Regular Life

Regular Life

In three words I can sum up everything I've learned about life: it goes on. – Robert Frost

Take Me Out to the Ball Game

Pic of the Week

Detroit’s Ivan “Pudge” Rodriguez hits a double in Monday night’s game against the Oakland A’s.
(click any pick to improve it)

Monday night, I went to a Major League Baseball game for the first time since I was eight, give or take a year. Last week two co-workers planned to go and offered to grab a ticket for me. I’m not wild about the game, but this being my first trip with my new department, I figured it was a good way to get to know some of the new crew. Plus, I can enjoy any event that gives me an outlet to use my camera without looking like a complete photo geek.

Our seats were the first row behind the visiting team’s bullpen (that’s where the pitchers hang out and stay loose during the game).

This next shot is of Jason Grilli, a pitcher who has appeared 16 times this season for the Detroit Tigers. He was walking straight at us, and my camera’s autofocus was hunting a lot. I think his right shoulder (not your right) is pretty sharp.


Two women a couple rows behind us flirted with him throughout the game. One, apparently recently divorced, seemed reluctant to go through with her friends’ plans of getting her “back on the horse.” Or, as in this case, the Tiger. Nevertheless, when Grilli offered her his room key wrapped in a note, delivered by a security guard, she accepted. At least, that’s what we were pretty sure she took from the guard’s hand.

That slut.

So, anyway, we were there for pro baseball, not some other form of debauched tomfoolery.

I took some pics, ate (I didn’t say “enjoyed”) a Big Dog and popcorn, and knocked the rust off my knowledge of the game’s rules. I was disappointed that nobody tried to steal a base. The only name I recognized was Piazza, and I got a picture of his name and his ass to prove it. (But not his name on his ass, which would be a whole different, umm… ball game.)


My favorite series was of the guy watering the dirt before the game. I’ve always enjoyed backlit water spray against a dark background. Here’s a sample.


The rest of the game was too dark for my meager lenses and archaic in-camera noise-reduction to handle to my satisfaction. Sometimes I feel saddled by five-year-old digital technology because in low-light situations I could pull out a roll of 400 ISO (ASA) film and get much better results than I do with my D100. Or a much newer, and much less expensive, D50 or D40. Meh. I make do.

We had fun and enjoyed the cool air blowing in off the San Francisco Bay. Although I can’t recall now, I’m sure it’s better than the weather we had in Houston the last time I saw a professional baseball game live.

10 Responses to Take Me Out to the Ball Game

  1. Ok, so you saw Detroit and Oakland. Where WERE you???

    I thought you were in TX?

    Have a great weekend Mark!

  2. Very nice pics, all, Mark. Of the ones here, that water dude is my favourite. Partly because, hey!, he’s watering dirt, and not the grass beside the dirt. That’s just funny.

    Seems to me that the lady a couple rows behind you, and Mr. Grilli, were both taking advantage of a mutually beneficial situation. If what you assume transpired actually did. I have a cousin whose mother once gave him some rather sage advice: the best way to get over a man is to get under a new one. Which makes more sense when I reveal that this cousin of mine is rather gay.

    So if it works out for a bit of fun both for Flirty Girl and Mr. Grilli, then no harm no foul on either account. Go get him, Tiger.

  3. Mark – You’ve confused your poor reades with your lack of tansistion here. Last Regular Life saw you were heading back home for New Mexico…now you’re running around in San Fran. For a guy who delights in sharing the minute details fo a story, you just left out a whole chunk of significance, dude ;)

    I am in awe of that top shot. To capture the motion of th ebat and th eball at that exact second…wow. Did you snap every pitch? Or did you just get THAT lucky? Either way, it’s a tremendous shot.

    And it seems pretty clear from the picture that Jason Grilli was flirting with you as well. Had you played your cards right…that room key could have been yours.

    When do you come home? Tonight right? I’m sure the whole Williams clan is looking forward to that. Have a safe flight.

  4. Dave – Oh, as Moksha pointed out, perhaps I left out a detail or two. But, I thought that the fact I was watching the Oakland A’s and that I enjoyed the cool breeze off San Francisco Bay would reveal that I was in Oakland that night. Oakland and San Fran both are on the bay. I didn’t go to San Fran on this trip.


    Long story short (riiiight), I’m on a business trip. I was going to post about that first, but time got the best of me on Thursday night, so here’s this light fare instead.

    Simon – “That slut” could apply to both the player and the woman. Of course, I only used it for fun. They’re adults who can do as they wish with their bodies.

    Moksha – Lack of transition? Lack of transition?!

    I like bunnies.

    Seriously, though, I took quite a few pics of guys swinging the bat (and standing there watching the ball fly past). This one was part luck, part patience and persistence.

    Grilli was, indeed, friendly to everybody. He was signing balls for fans who clearly were rooting for the A’s, and just generally having fun.

  5. Great pictures! I love going to major league games. I’d go every week if I could, and I miss watching the Cardinals when we lived in St. Louis.

    I still think San Fran is the most unique city I’ve ever been to. I guess NYC would qualify too, just because of the amount of people. But…you can go to most big cities and see something close to NYC, but you can’t go anywhere to see what San Fran offers.

    Have you seen 300 yet? I watched it on BluRay the other night and it is pretty cool. The cinematography is very unique.

  6. I don’t really get baseball, but it sounds like an okay way to spend time with friends. Love that first picture, the way you’ve captured the bat in motion, that’s exciting!

    p.s. Mark, there’s a chance I’m allergic to your blog – I’ve been sneezing since I got here!

  7. Ok Mark, you have been holding out on us. That jeep ride was a front wasn’t it? You have really invented the transporter like they had on Star Trek.

    You just couldn’t hide it for long. New Mexico, then San Franscisco, tomorrow it will be Paris.

    Great shots by the way!

  8. Charles – Yep, I saw 300. It was good. I think pretty much all of the “sets” in that were created digitally. I think they shot the whole thing with blue screen (or green screen) behind the actors.

    Jay – I’m not a big fan, either, but I always like a new place to play with my camera.

    I’ll be careful with the pepper next time to cut down on your sneezing.

    Mike – It is funny how I timed these posts. The Red River trip ended in mid July. I was still posting that trip when this one started. Craziness!

  9. I just bought 300 on my last shopping trip when I saw it for sale near the registers. Love that movie. I think all but a few of the city scenes were completely green screen. Amy has said that she thinks I’m in love with some of the hard bodies in that film, and she’s not far wrong. It’s OK to admire the exquisite masculine form, isn’t it??

    I like bunnies too.

  10. I love the first pic. If you take your software and get the orange tint out of it (no doubt caused by the artificial lighting), you would have a Sports Illustrated shot! I love baseball – Go Braves!!!


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