What Happened??

It seemed to be a normal Kershaw day.  Somehow it turned into something very different.

It started out to be annoying.  There was a line to get in which is unusual on a nongiveaway day.  I was sure all these people did not have an MVP card to show season ticket status to get in for early batting practice.  Silly me.  The thought occurred to me that it was USC Day and all these people in line had gone to USC.  Wrong.  They were in line to get in another line for the autographs being signed for earthquake assistance for Japan and Equador.  The signers were Maeda himself, Dave Roberts, Jaime Jarrin, and Yasmani Grandal.  Yasmani was a no-show.  Someone said that he was mad about something. The event was organized by Kenta Maeda.

So of course there was that other long line inside.  It took me 50 minutes to get into the stadium much to my chagrin.  Not happy.  The only good part of this whole debacle was that there was no one down at the seats or at batting practice.  They were all in that autograph line.

The guys were out shagging balls as usual.  It was wonderful not having the crowd there begging for balls and annoying the Dodgers as they practiced.
They all went into the clubhouse as usual around 5:00.  The only player left on the field was Kenta Maeda who was speaking again to the Japanese media.  

Trayce Thompson had been talking to media so was late going in.  I asked him for an autograph.  Yes, that is rare for me but it was a good time since I was the only person standing there.  He was happy to sign.  Another person was standing near me and asked for an autograph but he didn’t look so happy about that.  Most of the players know I’m not much of an autograph seeker.  I have one ball that I have that I will get autographs on.  I call it my team ball.  When it is full, I’m done.  I like pictures and hugs.  By the way, someone was mad at me because Puig gave me a hug.  I mean really??? Yasiel always hugs me.  She told me she had worked hard to earn a hug.  What does that mean?  

I saw Kenta coming into the dugout.  I hesitated a moment.  I was holding his Maeken jersey in my hand.  I like to show him my support by waving it but I had it rolled up.  He held out his hand to sign it.  I was excited.  I had my silver marker handy.  I asked him to sign it in Japanese.  Later I heard that since he came to the U.S., he won’t sign in Japanese anymore. I gave him a donation for the earthquake fund but I think he thought it was payment for the autograph.  He looked at me in confusion.  I said earthquake in Japanese and he understood and took the $20 bill with a broad smile.  I’m beginning to really love this guy.  He recognizes me by now which makes it even sweeter.

Lucky me.

It was then time to go up to reserve section to get my sister’s USC tee shirt.  It was a bit of a walk but I met a very nice guy on the elevator who happened to be going in the same direction.  His name is Sammy and he is in charge of all these special events.  I asked him about a special Japan night since the Dodgers now have a Japanese player.  He told me that the Kenta Bobblehead night would be Japan night.

Here’s Sammy.  He gave me some good information.

Always good to see a familiar face.

The tee shirts were being distributed at a special location.  I wanted to get there before the sizes were gone.  I shouldn’t have worried since few people wear extra teeny like my sister.

The tee shirt is nice.  My sister loved it.

I trekked back down to field level to the baseline club to eat.  The food was interesting:  two kinds of meatballs, turkey and beef, Brussels sprouts, porcetta.  Salads were delicious as usual.  I was happy to see my good buddy Yoshiko and her husband.  We talked a little before I had to hurry off.  I have a certain routine that I try to adhere to and I was a little off by that time.

I have a certain spot I like to stand in so I can get unobstructed view of the field.  It was indeed USC night at Dodger Stadium.

There was absolutely no one on the field.
Then Clayton Kershaw made an appearance.  
Then Yaz walked from the dugout to the bullpen.  He definitely is a better catcher than first baseman.
Clayton did his usual stretching routine.
Then he sat a while and contemplated world events.
After throwing a few balls, he went into the bullpen.
Chase Utley came out first followed by Corey Seager, pretty much the oldest player and the youngest.

It was good to see Carl Crawford who just was activated from DL.  He came out to the field with Joc Pederson who seems to be doing better with the bat.  I hope the Joc-hating criticism dies down.

Of course the guys had to go give Dee a little love.
Ha!!  I think I was spotted.  “Hey, isn’t that the girl I clocked a couple of years ago??”
Pics coming and going.
Joc doing some stretching with the trainer.
I really like Carl.
National Anthem.  Looks like they are sneaking a peek at….
USC cheer leaders.  After all, it is USC Day.
Kike and Justin playing catch
Yasiel came out to speak to the enemy
Ugh, some Dodger dirt got in my mouth.
Corey signed for the fans much to their delight.
as Yaz and Clayton walked by with pitching coach Honey.
Excitement was building.  Can you pick out Trayce, Kenta, Kike, Charlie and Dave from the pictures?
First pitch.  It seemed to be the typical Kershaw outing for the first 6 innings.  He struck out 10 in 7 innings.
The only Dodger runs were facilitated by walks given up by Tom Koehler, the Marlins ok pitcher.  He walked 4 in 5 innings.  Two scored in the first inning thanks to two wild pitches.  The third run was a double hit by Kershaw himself who sometimes has to give himself run support.

The Marlins always seemed to be in some sort of discussion with a lot of hugging going on.
As they say, the wheels completely fell off in the 6th inning when Kershaw seemed to let his emotions get the better of him.  The sports writers wanted to compare this game to the postseason games with the Cardinals.
The Dodgers had a 3-0 lead when the wrecking-crew-in-one Giancarlo Stanton hit a 3 run home run making the 6th inning a 5 run inning.  And that was the turning point of the game.  They were calling it two games in one….the stellar Kershaw in the first part and the emotional Kershaw in the second part.  

I went to the club to comfort myself with strawberry ice cream.
It really didn’t make me feel better.  I wasn’t so upset over the loss because as I told my friend Mika,  overall it was good.  It was USC Day.  I got a shirt for my sister.  Kenta signed his Maeken jersey in Japanese.  Mika got an autograph and was able to give Kenta a nice present of mochi, a Japanese sweet treat. I saw my good friends Veronica, Christian, Yoshiko and her husband.  I love my group of friends at Dodger Stadium.  I always like chatting with Norma and Cece.  I have a good life.

This is where I sit.  I am 3 rows back from the field.  I have a choice seat on the aisle.
But the game wasn’t over although it actually was pretty much over.  It’s always fun to see Ichiro no matter what team he’s on.  He’s got an interesting ritual which probably psychs out the pitcher.

It was enough to have an extensive discussion.

What do you suppose he’s going to do??  Figure out a pitch.
Well, go ahead and pitch guys.
So he ended up on base.  I took this picture with my phone so sorry it’s so fuzzy.  I had already put my camera away.  I knew it was over.  It felt over.
Wednesday is fleece blanket day.  Yes, another giveaway day.  Hopefully it won’t be another crowded mess at the gate.  The Dodgers play the Marlins again.  Scott Kazmir pitches today. Kenta Maeda pitches on Thursday.

Thanks for stopping by.  GO DODGERS!!!

Just a side note….so happy that my sister’s kitty Hobarito returned yesterday.  He had been missing exactly one week. He’s an inside cat and my sister was afraid he was dead.  He has been exhausted.  It’s hard work being beat up every night.  God is good.

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