I wanted to share with you all some fantastic experiences that I had at Safeco Field 2 out of the last 3 days.
I attended on Friday night, end result 8-3 bad guys, but had P-R-I-M-E seats, with my best friend during and since high school. We headed to the stadium at about 4:45 from his house on the eastside of Seattle, proper. Arriving in the Mariner garage at 5:15, we parked directly next to the turnstile in our benefactors reserved parking spot. We got out of the car, walked in, and recieved our VERY nice Ichiro Bobbleheads. We walked directly across the walkway, down the ailse to the first row, turned right, went in 4 seats and sat down. We literally walked 400 feet after parking and took our seats.
The game was actually decent, in terms of playing, as both teams had decent pitching, and errors on the left side of the infield caused much of the scoring by the M's. I casually took in the game from ideal seats, and spent some very quality time with someone whom I feel is like family that I actually like. I took over 300 photos, and will be placing them online in the coming days. They were taken with a Nikon Digital SLR, so they are wallpaper quality, and I got some great action and contact shots.
Saturday, I helped my wife tile in our radiant floor heating in our bathroom, took my son to Baseball practice, where he is an aspiring catcher, adn watched the game in fast time on my DVR at about 10pm PAcific time. Seemed to be a struggled outing for Gil.
Sunday, and this is the day you have been reading for, was one of the most special days of my life.
My wife, Heather, and my 3 kids, Kyle, Hailey, and Katelynn accompanied me to the ballpark to watch my beloved Royals take on the Mariners. Now, all of my family became sports fans in Seattle, except for myself. This makes my house very lonely during the baseball season and quite hostile during football season.
My wife, dressed in her Mariners Baby Doll T-Shirt, pink for breast cancer support. She looked wonderful. My son wore my OLD (1987 I believe) Royals cap, adn his Mariners alternate jersey. Hailey, my middle, wore an Ichiro 3/4 sleeve and a pink KC cap. My youngest, Kate, wore a Royals home jersey. She is 3, wears glasses, is towheaded, and more active than most children. Great sense of humor -- A most wonderful child.
They brought me in the stadium and took me to the 3rd base dugout (Royals), where we stood for the next 1.5 hours. What happened here was so wonderful that it almost made it a perfect day.
Well, we were standing there, and hadn't seen a single player. BP was cancelled cause the Royals didn't want it, and the Mariners never take it on Sundays. I was wondering if they were going to come out and sign before we were ushered back to the outfield by the Safeco Staff, when Gil Meche came out and promised to sign after warming up. True to his word, he came over, and we chatted. He signed my daughters pink KC cap, my baby's Royals jersey, my Royals jersey, and my sons baseball that he caught at a game last year (foul ball, SEA vs TOR). I then met brother of Floyd Bannister/uncle of Brian, and his daughter. We chatted quite a while, and I asked him to pass along the thanks of KC fans for their service to our team (both Floyd and Brian). He said he would be delighted to.
Odalis Perez came wandering over, and gave Kate the ball he had been warming up with. He then signed it for her, as signed my son's ball. Hailey, the middle, was still oogling Gil (She thinks he and Ichiro are the cats' pajamas) and didn't want anything to do with anymore autographs.
Soria made an appearance, and then my wife and daughters headed to the play area whilst my dedicated son and myself maintained the watch for MLB talent to sign our stuff.
We were soon rewarded. A gentlemen named Kevin (same name as mine) came over to me, and identified himself as a RSTN staff member. He asked myself and another Royals fan couple where our seats were, and identified us as possible shots for breaks in the innings as local Royals fans. You guys may have seen us. I'm a goofy big dude, who has 3 adorable children and a wife who looks like she is way out of my league.
Immediately afterwards, John Buck interviewed directly in front of us with RSTN. Afterwards, he signed my jersey (I'm very picky about who I will let sign it. You need to either have suffered with the Royals and I for a long time already, or have just commited to quite a bit of suffering [i.e. Gil Meche]). He also signed my son's ball, and my son told him 'I'm a catcher in little league', to which John said 'Really? Keep it up!' This may have changed my son's life forever. He lit up about catching immediately. John just earned EVERY dollar that I have ever dumped into this team. Every dog, every ticket, every jersey. EVERY dollar. Thank you, John.
All in all, these players signed for us: Meche, Duckworth, De La Rosa, Buck, Soria, Wellemeyer, and Perez. I wanted to tell my son not to get Wellemeyer's signature, since I think he will be in Omaha soon, but I didn't want to be rude either.
We headed to our seats in Right Field, and had a nice mix of Royals and Mariners fans around us. One lady was from Moberly, MO, another guy was born/raised in KC, down the row was a guy in a early 80's poweder blue Brett jersey that looked QUITE worn in. There were lots of knowledgable and polite fans for the Mariners all around as well.
The game, as you have all read/heard/seen was decent until the 7th. DeJesus missed Bloomquist's double about 100-125 feet from me. My daughter consoled me as I once again contemplated suicide.
While I won't get into the gory details, my poor family has gone through a lot of stress over the past year, especially when I left the Navy after 10 years. We had a great day today, ALL together, and things have been going quite well for a while. We don't have a lot of friends here since we haven't lived here but for 2 years. Still, I wanted to air out to the masses how great the day was; how even though we all whine and complain a lot about how bad the Royals fucking suck, they are still able to orchestrate a special experience for us.
Thanks for listening.
-- Kevin the VERY happy Royals fan.