Sunday, October 3, 2021

Truist Park Guided Tour

September 28, 2021

Let's start this post off by saying we thought we had quite the heavily stacked schedule on this day. We purchased the earliest possible entrance time to the largest Jim Henson collection in the world. We knew we had to leave this glorious exhibit no later than 1:30 if we were to get to Truist Park in time for our guided tour. Unfortunately, we finished the entire exhibit in 30 minutes. It was awkward because we had not planned for the extra time. So we went back to the hotel to nap instead of going to the World of Coca-Cola because who really gives a giant F about soda? It's not alcohol.

ANYWHO, back to the real purpose of this blog. We picked the last tour of the day prior to game time, so we didn't get to see the broadcast booth or visit the field and dugout, but we aren't totally sure if the tour guide would have hit the field and dugout ANYWAY because the team clubhouse is off limits regardless of game day rules due to an apparent "towel incident" on a prior tour. 

Our tour guide was a lovely, stereotypical southern gentleman type of man. Though he did give us a little ribbing from being New Yorkers and specifically to Lisa for being a Mets fan. Thankfully, his jokes never came across as being "dick-ish" unlike some other ass clowns we've come into contact with. Or else this tour could've gotten really ugly. And possibly criminal. 

We will talk about the area surrounding the park (known as The Battery) in our game post, so if you're interested in reading about that, you'll have to check that out. For now, we will keep this focusing strictly on the actual guided tour. 

When we do guided tours of baseball stadiums, we bump into two kinds of people. The first group of people think we're super interesting for being in the midst of a ballpark bucket list or having completed the aforementioned bucket list. These people ask us a lot of questions about ballparks they've yet to visit and opinions about the ballparks they've also been to. 

Then we get the second type of people. When we went to St. Louis, we had an entire tour group of these individuals. It's the type of people who hate us for this bucket list. We're not sure why, but they never make it a point to hide their animosity towards us. We've yet to meet anyone in this category that's actually completed the bucket list. Usually the fellow bucket list completers are found in the first category of baseball fans - cool people that are excited to meet other people that have done what they've done. The trolls tend to be openly mean and often aggressively challenge our opinions about the ballparks we've visited. On this tour group, we had a couple that fell into this category. At least, we think they're a couple. They may have been brother and sister or colleagues, but who the f*ck knows? They angrily asked what our favorite parks were and seemed offended that we didn't choose Target Field. She, in particular, also seemed offended when we said that Oakland's park was trash, but let's be serious. Even the A's agree that their stadium is trash. That's why they keep trying to leave. Both also rolled their eyes or had snide comments to make whenever we answered one of the guide's baseball trivia questions correctly. 

End rant. 

One of the first spots on this tour is this tomahawk made entirely of Legos, which was built by a young fan. If a grown man had built this, we probably would have spent some time making fun of him, but since a kid did it, we can call it, "impressive." He also apparently did this without any sort of directions, so it's possible that this kid is a borderline genius. Perhaps he will solve the environmental crisis. 

We headed up to the top level of the park where he showed us a few things, including the broadcast booth that we could not visit because it was too close to game time. 

Franchise titles and also Cathy the Cow (she used to hold a tomahawk over at Turner, but now she holds a Chik-Fil-A sign with the kind of spelling that makes Serena twitch in anger):

Retired Numbers (Dale Murphy, Bobby Cox, Chipper Jones, Warren, Spahn, John Smoltz, Greg Maddux, Phil Niekro, Eddie Matthews, Hank Aaron, Tom Glavine, Jackie Robinson):

A huge drum that is, from what we can see, purely ceremonial because we did not see it get used once. Not during the tour and not during the game. From our original position behind home plate, we did think that it was a large coffee cup. We did not figure out that it was a drum until we got next to it, so not sure what that says about us. Either we have a severe coffee addiction or our eyesight is failing us in our old age. Or mayhaps it is both. 

They do have quite a few luxury boxes and as usual with these guided tours, we visited them all. It's becoming pretty tired for us, so we're no longer going to report or share every single club that we're shown. We're only going to share the highlights of these locations. In the case of the Hank Aaron suite, they had two pretty cool features. 

The wall of bats represent each home run Hank Aaron hit, as well as the date and location/team he did it against. The bat is the  one he hit his 715th home run with. It HAS vacationed in Cooperstown, but Hank felt that the bat belonged in Atlanta and here it stays. 

This is a painting of dots:

He said quite a bit about the local artist that created this and the other dot paintings in the area, but we have ADD and we didn't pay attention to any of it. 

This is a suite with some sort with a "wall of fame" type of vibe, but again, we kind of zoned out, so you're lucky you're even getting these pictures. 

Braves Monument Park IS super cool, but not nearly as cool as the original museum that Turner Field had. Also, the tour is a good way to get clean photos of everything because during the game, it gets crowded.

Tom Glavine is the only Brave we can ever truly love. Javy Lopez is hot. Physically. He might actually be a beautiful idiot though. They always are beautiful idiots.

This is weird cafe/homage to Chipper Jones. Who is terrible. That is all you really need to know. 

Here is the view of the field from the fanciest seats in the house:

A Phillies player headed towards the dugout, but he had a sweatshirt on and we weren't close enough to really see who he was. Serena sat up at attention when he started walking towards the dugout because she wanted to flip the middle finger if it was Bryce Harper. It wasn't and apparently the player mistook her Kermit the Frog stare down as a compliment because he waved at us. We begrudgingly waved back. 

Saturday, September 18, 2021

Yankees v Indians 9-18-21

Well, it's the middle of September already. Not that you'd know that from the sweaty gym balls-style weather that we've been having. We were looking forward to a pleasant outdoor experience during a late season baseball game. Instead, we've left the game with sun burns and suffering from dehydration. Probably didn't help that we started our afternoon off with wine instead of water, but that is not our fault. It should have been mid-70's at most and the Yankees shouldn't be selling souvenir carafes and wine glasses. It just spells trouble. 
Also, as you can see in this photo, we totally crushed the Don Mattingly bobblehead giveaway. This is largely thanks to Clear. That line was super quick compared to the rest of the security lines around the stadium AND due to an unwarranted amount of traffic for a mid-Saturday, we were totally late getting to the ballpark. So, anyone that tells you that the annual fee for Clear isn't worth it is a big, fat liar. They're lying to you and to themselves. Clear, we're ready for our paid sponsorship/advertising contract. Hit us up. 

We actually watched 4 innings of the game from this view because it was shaded and the temperature was much cooler here. Then we got hungry and foolishly decided to head up to our seats, thinking that the upper deck "always gets such a nice breeze." We got no such nice breeze, but we did go old school with our food selection - a nice, reliable spicy sausage and peppers sandwich. We've learned a few things over the years and the number 1, most important thing we learned is to not photograph yourself eating a sausage or a hot dog. Ever. It's horrifying. 
The Yankees took a giant sh*t on the field and called it a baseball game. They chose not to play today. Unfortunately, they didn't give us the option to not pay for our tickets. At least we got our bobbleheads. We received several offers from people requesting to buy it from us, but Serena felt that since it was Don Mattingly, it was a priceless artifact and Lisa's asking price was too high. The highest offer we got was $10, but Lisa held out for a Louis Vuitton bag. 

We decided that we needed ice cream, so we went in search of a Ben & Jerry's. The line at the stand in our section was personally offensive, so we decided to go downstairs to the main concourse, thinking we'd have more stands to choose from. We did not. The line in the food court was even worse, so we ended up on the Grand Slam Shake stand because no one was there. 
While tasty, it wasn't what we wanted, so it didn't really satisfy our cravings. Lisa got the cereal one and Serena got the celebration one. It was too hot to go back to our seats, so we ended up watching the rest of the sh*t show standing around the main concourse. Bunch of clowns. 

Sunday, September 5, 2021

Mets v Pirates 7-11-21

We've not been the best baseball game attenders this season considering we're the "Traveling Baseball Babes," but in our defense, the extended lockdown done did us dirty. Suddenly, our weekends are filled with birthday parties, rescheduled bridal/baby showers, rescheduled weddings, bachelorette parties, anniversary parties, bbqs, and all of the other sh*t people enjoyed having before the pandemic hit and now they are all crammed into the same tiny window instead of being spread out throughout the year. We've literally had zero time to attend baseball games. Hell, we haven't even had time to post these recent blogs. Look at us. We're two months behind on sh*t.  

Which brings us to this particular Mets game. Normally, we pick games for a specific reason. Maybe it's the opponent, but mostly it's due to a special bobblehead giveaway. In this scenario, we picked it because it was the only Sunday we had free to go to game together. We didn't even know that there was a free giveaway (a Jacob DeGrom jersey) until the night before and Serena had to work so late on Sunday that we assumed we'd never get to the park early enough to get one.

For whatever reason, security had us circle around the ballpark before funneling the entire Tri-State area into one parking lot entrance. Seemed a bit ridiculous and inefficient to us, but what do we know? We didn't go to security guard school. We parked roughly 30 minutes to game time and since we were convinced that we didn't have a shot in hell at getting the DeGrom jersey, we meandered leisurely over to the gate with the shortest line. 

Lo and behold, we managed to get inside very quickly AND snag a pair of jerseys, which will come in handy next season when we finally get to make our way back to the ballpark again. 

They're shockingly not bad. Usually the free giveaway jerseys are absolute trash or the color is totally offensive, but here, neither was the case. 

We grabbed a pair of beers and headed up to watch the game. This is the view from our seats:

We weren't hungry yet (shocking, I know), so we hung out in our sweltering seats for roughly 6 innings. The Mets were performing marvelously, leading 5-2 before we headed to the Jim Beam Suite for air conditioning and food. This time around, we got ourselves some wine because we're classy broads like that. Also, we're suckers for souvenirs cups (as you can see). 

We also split a Polar Burger and an Ultimate Grilled Cheese. The burger was $16.50 and the grilled cheese was $10.25. 

The burger was Pat LaFrieda's black truffle blended burger patty with maple spiced caramel onions, smoked gouda, lettuce, tomato (which Serena picked off), and claw sauce on a brioche bun. The grilled cheese was provolone and american cheeses with pimiento spread in a pinwheel flatbread and it was served with what they called "tomato fondu," but let's call a spade a spade. It was served with a cup of jarred marinara sauce. 

While we stuffed our faces, Pittsburgh managed to scrape another 2 runs across, making the score 5-4. They wanted to make it interesting for us. We still didn't think much of it because the Mets were hot and the Pirates sucked (they still suck). We watched the game in the air conditioning until the bottom of the 8th when we decided that we needed ice cream (bottomless f*cking pits we are apparently). 

The line to the ice cream and waffle stand was so long that we ended up watching the remainder of the game from the line. 

And what a remainder of a game it was - the Pirates scored 2 more runs in the top of the 9th and closed it out to win 6-5.