Sunday, May 5, 2013

I'm Back! Angels vs. Orioles Series: 5/3-5/5

          I'm back! First off, a HUGE thank you to DKWilson for helping me out and suggesting that I try a different internet browser. I was starting to become really disappointed and discouraged that I would never be able to post on this blog again. Anyways, now that I'm back up, I have some catching up to do. I figured that I'd start with the Angels vs. Orioles series at Angel Stadium considering how well I did.

Game One (5/3/13):

          Since I had just finished up with my state testing, I had a minimum day, which therefor meant that I could graph the Orioles' walk-ups. I was very excited for the Orioles to come into town. Last year I did fairly well with the club, and was hoping to repeat. The first Oriole to walk up was All-Star closer, Jim Johnson. Johnson actually rolled up with two other guys, but none of the graphers (including me) could identify the other two. None-the-less, I was more than happy to get Johnson on a ROMLB across the sweetspot.

          The next guy to walk up was Troy Patton. Patton is extremely nice when it comes to signing autographs and always interacts with the fans. Troy was nice enough to sign four cards for me.

          Then the man himself, Hall of Famer Jim Palmer walked up. Palmer was one of my main goals this series, however I was discouraged to hear that Palmer signed the previous day. Most of the time, Palmer will only sign one day a series, but luckily there were only about 10 or so graphers, and when Palmer saw us all form a single-file line, he came right over and signed for every one of us. I was very excited to get the 1990 HOF'er on a ROMLB across the sweetspot with the "HOF 90" inscription.

          About 20 minutes later an unexpected thing occurred. Baseball legend, Rod Carew pulled up in his car and walked up. It's not a rare thing to see Carew at an Angel game, but it is a very rare thing to see him sign at one. I approached Mr. Carew and politely asked him for an autograph, he kind of looked up, saw the ten other people behind me, and said he was in a hurry. I was a bit disappointed to say the least, but I continued to wait in hopes that he would come back out. Sure enough, about 30 minutes later, the 3,000 hit club member walked back out and signed for every single one of us. I don't think I've ever seen Carew in such a good mood, he was laughing, smiling, and was awesome to be around. I was thrilled to be able to get another HOF'er on a ROMLB across the sweetspot.

          My day was already made. Two baseball legends in one day is an amazing thing to accomplish. I was seriously debating on going home and calling it a day, but I figured that I'd try and get a few of the big name Orioles since it was there only time in town this season. Meanwhile, I was able to get Ryan Flarethy and Brian Matusz when they walked up.

          As for batting practice, things were pretty slow I was, however, able to get former big leaguer Chris Singleton, Jason Hammel, J.J. Hardy, Chris Dickerson, and coach Wayne Kirby on cards.

          I was also able to get young phenom Manny Machado to sign a ROMLB. I heard from the day prior that Machado can't sweetspot, but I figured that he was still worth it. At least if/when he become the next A-Rod, I won't have to worry about getting his autograph.

          That was it for game one. Overall it was a sensational day. It's not too often that you get 2 HOF'ers and a future superstar in one day!

Game Two (5/4/13):

          Game two was a rare, Saturday afternoon game at Angel Stadium. Why? Because Fox was airing the game on national television, which to my despair meant that I would have to wake up early to catch any of the Orioles walking up. The first person to come up and sign was bullpen coach, Einar Diaz. I was the only person to approach Diaz so he was more than happy to sign all three cards for me.

          Moments later Buck Showalter walked up and signed for the couple of graphers waiting. Buck had denied all of the graphers last night, so I was happy to get him on a 2013 Topps Heritage card.

          Unfortunately, that was it for walk ups. Almost the entire team took the bus in, which is almost a 100% "no". In fact, the only player that I saw walk in was Chris Tillman, who more than rudely denied me. I was very shocked considering I was the only person in sight, but sadly, denial is becoming a bigger part of the game. As for BP, it was also very slow. I was, however, able to get one of the tougher players on the Orioles, Adam Jones, to sign a ROMLB underneath the MLB logo.

          Jones is probably one of the biggest jerks in baseball. The only reason he came over was because my friend Kyle, from Addictive Artworks, had a painting of Jones and had contacted Adam through social media the night before. Even though it wasn't sweetspoted, I was still very happy to be one of the five people to get Jones over the entire series. I was also able to get Chris Snyder to sign a couple of cards right before game time.

          Luckily, postgame graphing was much better than the previous night. I was able to get Chris Dickerson, Miguel Gonzalez, Nate McClouth, Freddy Garcia, Brady Anderson, and Darren O'Day to sign cards for me.

          Overall it was a sub-par day of graphing. The Orioles really surprised me this year, considering how friendly they were last season. None-the-less I was still happy to knock a few guys off of my bucket list. I want to thank all of you guys for sticking around and still reading this blog. Hopefully this technical difficulty didn't discourage any of my readers. Keep tuned as I will be posting A LOT of make-up posts from the month of May! Thanks for reading!


  1. Do you get all of your baseballs signed in pen? I've heard sharpies aren't good, so I was just curious to hear somebody else's opinion on the topic. Thanks.

    1. Yes, I get ALL of my baseballs in BIC blue ballpoint pens. Sharpies are in fact terrible for MLB official balls, they look good at first, but over time they spread and fade.

  2. Nice job Matt! Love the Machado.

    1. Thanks Josh, if he would of sweetspotted I would have been much more excited, but still, the dude is a stud.