This field is celebrating its 70th birthday this season. It’s incredibly unique, and quite an experience even with this tiny a crowd. You can hear every crack of a bat, thump of a glove, and “strike”-like grunt from the home plate umpire echo off the outfield walls, with some ambient, constant ribbits from frogs by the nearby Kern River. Not bad at all!
At the moment, the Lancaster JetHawks are leading the Bakersfield Blaze 3-2 in the bottom of the sixth inning. After this, It’s about a 90-minute drive home and then work in the morning. Through the week I’ll be blogging thoroughly about each ballpark I’ve seen thus far. But for now, I just can’t wait to crash in my own bed after all this motel-hopping. Now, back to the ballgame!
It’s hot and humid here, but this place’s teeny tiny foul territory makes every seat that much closer to the action. And they pulled out all the stops for that country/western theme all around the stadium. Free parking is also quite nice.
Each team hit two homers, but it was the Grizzlies’ 2-run shot that gave ‘em the win. 3-2 over the Salt Lake Bees, followed by a great fireworks show. Tomorrow, after I explore some nearby fruit farms, it’s on to Visalia
John Thurman Field. Modesto, CA.
I’m taking th scenic route to San Jose. Spent the night at my sister’s place and will take Highway 1 to Santa Cruz en route to SJ. Here goes…
Unfortunately, my idea of a road trip with friends from LA to Sacramento via Stockton fell through due to conflicting schedules. Fortunately, I had some credit left on an airline giftcard, so I put that to good use.
I think I'm not in Los Angeles anymore
I landed, drove to downtown and parked, then took a tour of the California State Capitol before lunch and further exploration of “Old Sac”.
A physical symbol of Democracy
After that, I hit the road for Stockton, and after about an hour’s drive arrived at Banner Island Ballpark (though it was signed as “Stockton Ballpark” on the outside)
I could have sworn it was "Banner Island Ballpark"
And I enjoyed an exciting game in a gorgeous ballpark. [TO BE CONTINUED...I have to board my plane back to Burbank]
It’s time for Dodger (Class ‘A’ affiliate) Baseball!
Another really quick post. Gotta be up early tomorrow, and then I’m heading to Rancho Cucamonga to watch the Quakes do battle with the Lancaster JetHawks on what should be a hot afternoon.
Tonight’s game was a lot of fun. I drove to San Bernardino and waited in line about 30 minutes before the gates opened at 6 so that I could get a free replica San Bernardino Spirit jersey with Ken Griffey Jr.’s name and number 24 on it! My stepdad took the Metrolink from Orange County and caught a cab from the train station to the stadium. Together we watched what was a pitchers duel until the top of the 7th when the Storm let loose. Arrowhead Credit Union Ballpark was beautiful with its mountain backdrop, and it was actually kind of interesting knowing that it was designed by the same architect (HOK Sport) and even has the same floor plan as Clear Channel Stadium in Lancaster. While the seats are arranged similarly, it absolutely has a different feel, inside and out.
As I said, more on this later. I’m drained!
Three ballgames in three cities in three days! Must be summertime.
Friday I will catch the High Desert Mavericks (SEA) in Adelanto with some ‘very extended’ family, and spend the night in nearby Victorville. They’ll be taking on the Visalia Rawhide (ARI) at 7.
Just for kicks, I think I’ll drive the entire length of California Route 2, or at least the portion that is the Angeles Crest Highway. I just think it would be cool to see ocean, beach, metropolis, forest, and desert all within a few hours of driving.
On Saturday I’ll drive to San Bernardino to watch the Inland Empire 66ers (LAA…and it really pains me to type that official acronym) face off against the Lake Elsinore Storm (SD). My stepdad will be taking a train from Orange County and meeting me there, and spending the night. He and I have gone on a few of these baseball getaway trips to Major League parks in Chicago, Oakland, San Francisco, and New York (the old ones), which I’ll be writing about in some future posts.
Sunday afternoon will bring us west along Historic Route 66 (Foothill Blvd.) to The Epicenter, where the Rancho Cucamonga Quakes (LAD) are hosting the Lancaster Jethawks (HOU). I’ve been there once before, probably about five or six years ago, but it was a night game, so I won’t be seeing that gorgeous sunset silhouette of the San Gabriel Mountains beyond left field. The weather should be nice, though!
Mom’s meeting us there for lunch before the game, and I’ll probably follow them home to grab some baseball photos and memorabilia from long ago, since I won’t have any similar baseball trips for about a month. That will give me some more content to share with you all in the meantime.
If you can suggest any good pre- and post-game hangouts in Victor Valley and San Bernardino, please sound off in the comments! Perhaps I’ll see you there.