My son was on spring break last week, so it was a perfect time for us to take in our first game of the season. Since the Braves flew the coop in Richmond, Lynchburg is the nearest minor-league town to ours, and we go there often. This time out, I was excited to see the Pirates’ top new prospect, former Vanderbilt star Pedro Alvarez.
Alvarez went 0-5, but knocked in a couple of RBIs. The Hillcats beat the Potomac Nationals 14-7 to start their season undefeated. Here’s what it looked like from where I was sitting.
Jester-dude who made balloon animals/hats/stuff. My son was very skeptical of his schtick.
Jack with the innovative new Lynchburg Hillcats foam claw. He’ll never go back to the plain old foam finger now.
This young lady was the hottest concessions worker I’ve ever seen, but she messed up my order bad. That’ll teach me – always buy snacks from the old guy who’s been there a thousand years.
Fans are always welcome to chat or nab a signature. We sat along the third base line, right next to the home dugout.
National Anthem time. Even on cloudy days, like this one, the sun always seems to come out at this moment.
Alvarez at third. He made a couple of fielding errors, but he’s a rook, so we’ll forgive him.
Alvarez at the plate. He’s not the most patient hitter I’ve ever seen, but then again, it was his second pro game ever.
I bought a funnel cake at this stand. I hadn’t had one since my grandparents took me to Silver Dollar City when I was a kid. I figured, if it’s good enough for the cop, it’s good enough for me. Of course, I ended up with powdered sugar all over my clothes when the chilly wind kicked up.
With our apologies to Dippin’ Dots, Jack and I happen to believe that the simple sno-kone is the ice cream of the past, present, and future.
Southpaw dancing on the dugout. We got a new appreciation for the dangers of mascotting when he slipped in a rain puddle and went down. But he was a trooper, and he finished his set.
As night fell, it got colder, though the temperature never fell below 65 degrees. The wind was pretty cutting, though, so I bought jack a Hillcats-model blanket to cover up with. For those of you about to call social services, his lips were blue from the sno-kone, not the temperatures.
That’s our first trip. Very soon, I hope to make it to Salem, VA, where they’ve recently become affiliated with the Red Sox. They’ve stashed some great prospects there, including Ryan Kalish and Che-Hsuan Lin, and I want to get there before one of them is called up.