18 August 2010

Blue Jaysin' It Up

I love Toronto.  It's the city where my cousins grew up, the city with the awesome Chinese food, in the land of maple syrup and poutine.  I pretty much love everything about Toronto, and no, not even the winters would make me think twice about moving there, if given the chance.  I mean, seriously.  The Chinese food alone is incentive enough.  Also, I love Canadian accents and cool Canadian currency... and Canadian boys.  Mmm... Canadian boys... with their accents... and access to excellent Chinese food... and legitimate cold weather... *swoon*

I meant, I love Atlanta!  (You can't call me a traitor, I DO love Atlanta.  But Toronto = VACATION NO WORK SLEEP EAT DRINK BE MERRY DREAMY MEN CITY, and Atlanta = Where the Players Play.  And I'm pretty tired of the players playin', ya know what I'm sayin'?)

So as I mentioned before, I was planning on going to a Jays game while in Toronto, though, I'm pretty sure nobody in my family wanted to go at all... I'm the baseball fan in the family.  *shrug*  Sorry, guys?

Besides!  It was my first Blue Jays game since June 22, 2004.  And in 2004, I saw the Jays play Tampa Bay, as well.  (yes, I cheated, and looked up the box score.  I wasn't as into the Jays then as I am now.)  BUT I did remember that Fred McGriff was the DH in that game (for the Devil Rays), and I also remember that the SkyDome was still the SkyDome, and the roof was open.  I could see CN Tower.  :)  Also, Eric Hinske was still a Jay at that point, so I saw Hinske play in a Jays uniform 6 years ago.  :)  I also saw Jose Bautista play in a Rays uniform.

Jays fell to the Rays that day, 5 to 1.  But to be honest, nobody expected otherwise.  (I say this with all the love in the world for the Jays... but they were not very good.  Howie Clark, who now plays for the Twins, scored the only Jays run, I think.)

However, the Jays game that I attended six years later was different.  I could choose between a Tampa Bay game or a Boston game.  As much as I wanted to do both, it just wasn't possible because there were 7 of us cousins... And also, limited funds.  For some reason, we thought that the Sunday game (August 8, 2010) was going to be a Ricky Romero game... even though my phone disputed this.  But I figured that Ryan would know since he lives in Toronto, and follows the Jays a bit more than I do.  Nope.  It was Brandon Morrow.  The boys (not my brothers or cousins) seemed displeased.  I was a little bit disappointed, myself.  Ricky Romero is awesome.  But I had watched (on MLB.tv) Morrow pitch against the Orioles, and he got himself out of whatever trouble he got himself into, every time.  I was impressed, and that was enough for me.
Plus, he's cute.

So of course, we get there late.  Look.  What can I say?  I'm the baseball fan, but I also like sleep.  Plus there were 7 of us... and 2 more meeting us at the game.  We got seats overlooking left field.  NICE view... but the the roof was closed because it was overcast.  I wish it had been open because it felt really still in there... like the air was dead.  (I like moving air... it's a thing.)  Also, no pictures of  CN Tower like this, so boo.

We were walking towards our seats when there was sudden cheering.  Want to know why?  Because Yunel Escobar (who Ryan likes to call my boyfriend) had scored a run in the bottom of the 1st, driven in on a single by Vernon Wells!  (Yay, Yunel! <3 <3 <3)  It was the only run that would be scored during the game.  The previous game was a 17-11 monstrosity (8 homers by the Jays, there), and the roof was open.  With the dead air and the offensive outburst the day before, the bats were relatively quiet.  

Meanwhile, Brandon Morrow had already had himself a 1-2-3 top of the 1st... 3 strikeouts, and that's including Evan Longoria.  Andrew then proceeded to explain to me that if a Jays pitcher has 7 Ks, then you could present your ticket at a Pizza Pizza (see Scott Pilgrim vs. The World) for a free slice.  
Yes, that ticket.  It's pretty.

Brandon Morrow had his 7th strikeout by the 4th inning.  He didn't stop there, though.  Jays fans should have been able to get two-and-a-half slices of pizza, because Brandon Morrow struck out 17 Rays.  That was not a typo.  SEVENTEEN.  One-Seven.  Against Tampa Bay.  The Toronto Blue Jays SWEPT the Tampa Bay Rays.  They won the series against the Yankees (in New York, no less!) coming into the Rays series.  How awesome was it that I got to catch this?  And I watched a BEAUTY of a game.  Pitchers' duels are boring for casual baseball fans or ... non-baseball fans.  But for people like me, it's super exciting.  (Or distressing, depending on which team you're rooting for...  Le sigh, Braves... le sigh.)

He had a no-hitter going up until the 9th inning, with 2 outs.  :(  And of course, it was Evan Longoria who broke it up.  And Aaron Hill looked absolutely distraught over not getting to that ball.  Honestly, though, I don't think he would have had a play.  Poor guy.  He clearly wanted very badly to help Morrow to that no-no.  BUT!  Brandon Morrow had his first 1-hitter, and his first complete game on August 8, 2010.  The only hit he gave up was a single by Evan Longoria.  There are really worse things, don't you think?  :)  The Jays players gave him a Gatorade shower and not one, but two shaving cream pies to the face after the game.  This video doesn't show the second pie, which involved Shaun Marcum hiding behind a lawncare vehicle and sneaking up and getting Morrow in the face after he'd already been doused and pied!  :)
Gatorade Shower! (AP)
Shaving Cream Pie #1 (Reuters)
Shaving Cream Pie #2, Courtesy of Shaun Marcum (Reuters)

Vernon Wells, I should mention, made a spectacular catch which I saw live... !  He's awesome.  

I'm sad that I didn't get to see any particular Yunel acrobatics or any Jo-Bau homers... but really, what could Yunel do?  Morrow had taken it upon himself to give everybody a nice relaxing day.  

OH!  And I saw Jose Molina steal a base.  Standing up.  IT WAS AWESOME.  I wish I had gotten a picture of it, but I'm not a very diligent photographer, in spite of my penchant to stick cameras in everybody's faces.  The Jays dugout was practically rolling around laughing when they saw what had happened.  Jose Molina stole a base, dude!  Get real! 

Another interesting thing (which I also failed to take a picture of):  the beers had lids on the cups.  There were LIDS on the cups of beer.  No beer spillage!  EXCELLENT.  :)

I'm still trying to get my pictures organized.  I have fuzzy iPhone photos, decent (and blurry) point-and-shoot photos, and disappointingly wobbly and blurry dSLR photos.  I promise that when I get those sorted out, I'll post them here!  I got a couple of decent Yunel shots (but he looks tiny in them).  And I got a couple shots of Jose Bautista, before he shaved off his beard.  Didn't get any of Aaron Hill or any non-blurry Brandon Morrow photos though... le sigh.


Ian H. said...

Wow - you picked one hell of a game to go to! A near no-hitter, a spectacular catch by Vernon, and a steal by Jose Molina? Definitely worth the price of admission.

DaiKamonohashi said...

So Toronto is your Canadian boyfriend then?

Does that mean Toronto secretly doesn't exist?

Alison said...

@Ian: I know, right? It was a fun (and very fast) game.

@Jared: Toronto totally exists. Haven't you seen Scott Pilgrim? Those are Canadians, right there. And I'm totally in love. :)