Rumor has it that this would be Appel's last game with the team as he will be promoted to Double-A which is also the same rumor for the Quakes Corey Seager who is tearing up the league and if not now will soon be shipped to Double-A as well. Two players that I needed before they were gone.
Wife dropped me off at the park as she went to go get her friends and I headed to the line in front of the stadium as it was Altuve bobblehead giveway night. By the time they let people in the line was about 200 deep. Thankfully I was about the 20th in line.
Not into bobbleheads anymore but that is one cool looking Star Wars Jedi Altuve here. Noticed that people are asking $60 on the bay for him so I will be underselling this bad boy for some pocket change.
View from my actual seats. Front row. See what $8 seats gets you in the minor leagues.
A little less up to date than the screens at Dodger Stadium
Time to acquire some autographs.
I was prepping my materials when I heard a fellow fan say he walked by Julio Urias. I looked around and saw him and a bunch of fellow Quakes walking through the concourse towards the bullpen/locker area. They were not in their uniforms yet but in T-shirts with their numbers on their back. Easy to spot him and I had my photo ready.
Perfect placement of his signature. My first in person autograph of the young phenom. He was still signing for fans and since their were not too many I pulled out a black ball to see if I could acquire another autograph.
Not as nice as the photo but still love the look of it. Two autographs and I was done with Julio for the day. These are for my personal collection but when I go to Rancho next month I will be acquire an autograph for good friend Janet. I didn't forget about you.
At the same time of Julio signing I ran into Josh aka Dodgerbobble. He also made the trek up for some bobbles and autographs. His partner and crime Franz was also in tow and with the Quakes no longer around we headed to the Jethawk side to acquire some autographs. I wanted my two ( Appel and Correia ) and be done but they had more on their wish list. Appel walked by and said he would be back as he had somewhere to go. More on that later.
One by one the Jethawks came out to do stretches and warm up and signed for fans. I was still holding out for Carlos. He finally came out and with no more than a handful of us he started to sign.
He was giving his "short" signature today. I didn't care as an autograph is an autograph. This one came out much better than Julio's on the ball. Thank you again Carlos for stopping and signing for us.
I waited for a little to see if Appel would walk back but I decided to head back over to my seats on the Quake side as I saw Seager was out and warming up now. I was able to see his number from 300+ feet away. More on that later as well.
Made my way back there and saw that Appel was there.
He was doing a Q and A with fans. Good speech. I enjoyed listening. Problem was that I wanted his autograph and in the corner of my eye I saw Seager as well. Wanted both but had to play it smart and no leave on area to get one and miss out on the other. To complicate matters I saw Matt Herges down the line and wanted his autograph as well. I risked it and ran down there to see if I could get a quick signature.
Perfect timing as when I approached him he was finishing up with a young fan and promptly signed for me. Thank you Matt for finally signing for me. Also turned down in Rancho.
Interesting "autograph" to say the least.
Back to Appel I went. He was finishing up his speech and as soon as he did a group of us approached him for autographs. Very cordial and nice about it. He did stick to one per person except for Franz as he got a second one once he asked for a personalization.
Nice signature. Would have came out great if he didn't have to shrink signature to add the bible verse. I am not going to complain as I have no problem with players putting those on signatures. Thank you for signing and speaking once again.
Back to my seats I went and Seager was finishing up his warm ups and he had to walk right by seats to get to the dugout and I asked him for an autograph on a photo.
As in Rancho he signed with a smile on. Thank you for the autograph Corey.
I was actually planning to graph post game but I actually got all the signatures I wanted pre-game. That is a first. That has never happened for me. Man, I love minor league baseball. So much easier to acquire autographs. With that behind me it was time to watch some baseball.
Star Wars characters helping out with the national anthem
Darth Maul stalking the fans
Seager after the 3rd out of an inning
Seager at the plate
Time to go get munchies.
The Lancaster mascot and I
The wife and I and some storm troopers
Munchies in hand. Back to the seats.
During the course of the game Franz and I ended up each acquiring a ball from a Quake player.
During the game a Quake player threw a ball into the stands and it bounced around among fans until it landed into my wife's hands.
My ball on the left
Her ball on the right
Even though Julio is a starting pitcher I knew he might be called in as a relief pitcher today and thankfully he was as I got to see first hand how he pitchers. Pretty damn good.
Julio warming up
Julio on the mound
Julio delivering a pitch
Quakes game was about over so we took some pictures of the four of us.
Steph, Josh, Bonita Esposa and me
Just the wife and I.
As stated earlier I picked up all the autographs I needed pre-game. BUT, as we were leaving I noticed that Corey was the last Quake in the dugout and fans were leaving and not bothering him for an autograph. Well I had one last picture of him ( always bring back up ) so I asked him for another autograph. He was more than happy and told him it was nice to watch him play and wished him well in Double-A. He laughed.
Second Seager autograph of the day.
To long time readers of the blog you might have noticed that I am now wearing glasses. I knew I needed them for awhile but I continued to delay the inevitable. When my wife went in to get her eyes checked Dr. Liu checked mine and said I needed to finally get glasses. I knew this day would come. Dr. Liu did a tremendous job on the prescription and I am now able to see player's numbers from far away and balls that are heading in our direction. Protect the wife !!!
If you have any eye issues Dr. Liu can help you out. Tell him Dodger Penguin sent you. Thank you once again Dr. Liu for helping me see the world in 1080i high definition.
He can be contacted HERE
Great time in desert was had by all. Can't wait to make another trip up there.