A Day in the Park
As I mentioned yesterday, it's still hectic here and has been for the past three weeks -- but the things than I can do here is winding down, and getting a bit under control. So, I felt I could afford to finally take a breather and have a "day off."
That's why I didn't post anything here earlier. I was still rushing around a bit in the morning in order to get a few small things done before I took off for the ball game, and wanted to get there a little early to wander around the park. I took the El in from Wilmette, and got off at Addison, from which it's only one-block walk. Getting there early worked out well, too, because it turned out that there was a promotion giveaway today to the first 20,000 fans, and the place was absolutely packed with the attendance ending up being over 38,000
Great game. Oddly, even with the wind blowing out to left,field, which is usually the harbinger of a very high-scoring game, the Cubs were only leading Arizona 1-0 for most of the way, and it was quite tense. But then Chicago blew it out with five runs in the eighth inning, to win 6-0. Major clutch hit by shortstop Addison Russell -- about as perfectly named a ballplayer as the Cubs could have, given that Wrigley Field's address is 1060 Addison.. He'd had the day off, but came in for defense a few innings earlier, and then a big follow-up hit was crushed to center by Javier Baez -- who'd started the day at short but moved to third base when Russell came in. The roars of the jammed ballpark were visceral throughout the inning whenever there was another big hit.
It was a particularly special joy because my dad grew up walking distance from Wrigley after, about 8-10 blocks away, towards Lake Michigan (out over right fight). He'd walk to games as a little kid, and even played football in the ballpark -- back when the Chicago Bears played there, rather than have a marching band at halftime, in the early days they'd have the kids in local neighborhood football leagues play to entertain the crowd. As one might imagine, my dad was a major, lifelong Cubs fun who happily got to see them doing so well this year, so it was just absolutely great having the Cubs win today, and with such an enthusiastic crowd.
One of he unique charms of Wrigley Field, having been built in 1916 is that they have posts through the interior of the grandstand area, which obstruct the view. This would normally be quite annoying, yet you accept that it's part of the history and another era.
This was my first time at Wrigley Field to see in person that two new Jumbotrons -- the huge one in right field and the even more massive one in left. The one is left field is ridiculously big and, to me, it’s unnecessary. The new Jumbotron in right field is itself bigger than the legendary manual scoreboard in center field, and it’s plenty big enough. (Also, with all the new Jumbo-screens -- there are six – together showing all manner of stats…NONE of them ever once showed how many walks and strikeouts a pitcher has during the game! Very odd. Yet they do show, how many walks and strikeouts a pitcher is averaging per nine innings… The big, new screen aren't distracting, and are reasonably fine. It detracts slightly from the 100-year-old sense of the ballpark, but it's still Wrigley and still a joy. If you own one of the rooftoop buildings behind them, though, you might disagree...
But finally, I at last got the opportunity to console the elves back in Los Angeles, who were saddened that they weren't able to be at the ball yard themselves and were stuck taking care of the homestead themselves. Having free reign of the place just didn't seem as good today...
Go, Cubs, go..!!
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Robert J. Elisberg is a political commentator, screenwriter, novelist, tech writer and also some other things that I just tend to keep forgetting.
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