Monday, April 12, 2010

14 Hour Giants Extravaganza

The day started at about 7:30 am with the sound of people shuffling around, preparing for a cold, rainy day at AT&T Park. I got up from my spot on the hard wood floor in the dining room, threw on my Tim Lincecum Cy Young t-shirt, (It was a give away at a Fresno Grizzlies game last year) and was ready to go.

As we traveled north on highway 101, the sky steadily became more and more ominous. Once we passed San Bruno, the rain began to fall, and didn’t let up until about 4:00 pm. Regardless of the rain, we remained optimistic that there would be a game; we just didn’t know when.

We reached San Francisco by 10:00 am, parked at a sleazy lot a few blocks north of the stadium, and began our wet, rain filled day. Luckily, one of the guys with us had ponchos, so we all were prepared for some rain. We cracked open some beers, and hung around in the rain for about an hour before heading into the ball park.

The field was drenched, infield covered, and the rain was relentless. We hung around the stadium until about 2 or 2:30, when we decided to wait out the delay at a nearby sports bar. By this time, we had been in the rain for about 4 hrs, and my shoes were wet with no prospect of drying out any time soon.

rain game

Every bar within two miles of the park was jam-packed. With the group becoming restless, we headed back to the parking lot to drink more beer and listen to the radio. The rain came down with force, and it was cold to boot, but we still stood out in the rain and drank, clinging to a slim hope that the game will be played.

Suddenly, around 4:00, the rain let up. About 15 minutes later, the staff at the park announced a projected 5:15 start time. We were all about to call it quits when we heard the announcement; I was preparing myself for some clean socks and some Super-T. We all pounded another beer and felt a second wind. I threw another jacket on to bring my layer count to 5.

First pitch was at 5:14 and the crowd was pumped. The Giants started off slow. Brian McCann hit a two-run dinger off Lincecum in the first, and the Giants didn’t get on base until the 4th inning. It was Pablo Sandoval’s two out triple in the 4th that got things going. Huff then came up and pushed a grounder through the gap between SS and 3B, to bring the Giants within 1. The next time through, it was Sandoval once again that got things going, hitting a single and was eventually driven in on a two-run single by DeRosa. Lincecum lasted 7 innings on 108 pitches while striking out 10, limiting the Braves to the 2 runs they got in the first.

Sandoval Catch

The highlight of the night had to be Sandoval’s solo shot into right center field, although Matt Diaz’s error in the 8th caused quite a stir. It was a rough night for Diaz as he struck out to end the game. Immediately after the last pitch there was a sudden down pour. Talk about good timing. The final score of the game was 6-3 Giants.

Based on the length of the wait, the extremely miserable conditions, wet socks, stiff joints, and my wind burnt face, it’s hard to believe that this game was probably one of the best experiences I’ve had at a Giants game. We arrived home around 10 pm and it took about a whole 5 minutes for me to pass out.

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