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  1. Minor League Odyssey – Day Sixteen – Rochester (Game Ten)

    Note: This is the last in a series of blog entries detailing my game experiences on a road trip to see all the Twins minor league affiliates in their home parks. For those interested, links to previous entries are listed at the end in chronological order.

    After a quiet day visiting one of the local state parks and catching a matinee I head out to Frontier Field again. This time it is a beautiful night for baseball and while I am sad that this is the last game of the trip I can’t think ...

    Updated 08-15-2012 at 10:18 PM by IdahoPilgrim

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  2. Minor League Odyssey – Day Fifteen – Rochester (Game Nine)

    By late afternoon I am wondering if the game tonight is going to happen. A series of strong afternoon thunderstorms has come through the area and the rain has been heavy. The Red Wings do a good job, though, of keeping the public informed on their website of the game’s status, updating it regularly (are you listening, Twins?) and at 5:30 it is announced that the game is definitively on; the gates will open at 6pm, rain or no rain! Putting on my jeans (I have been wearing shorts the entire trip) ...
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  3. Minor League Odyssey – Day Thirteen – New Britain (Game Eight)

    After a much needed late wakeup and a quiet morning worshiping at a local church and stopping by a Dunkin’ Donuts (you can’t swing a dead cat around here in Connecticut without hitting one) for a late breakfast, I headed out to New Britain for my only day game of the trip. Temperature was in the eighties and the sky was partly cloudy; all in all a good day for baseball. Getting to the stadium I decide to splurge today and go for the preferred parking ($6) as opposed to general ($4). The extra minute ...

    Updated 08-13-2012 at 06:36 PM by IdahoPilgrim

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  4. Minor League Odyssey – Day Twelve – New Britain (Game Seven)

    I heard somewhere once that the biggest jump in the minor league system is the one between high-A and Double-A. I don’t know if that’s actually true, but as I get to New Britain Stadium and get settled I find that I can believe it. For the first time I am in a sizable stadium designed for a minor league team (Hammond Field was also sizable, but it was clearly designed with the Twins in mind – Fort Myers is just an occupant in the months between spring training seasons). I also immediately notice ...

    Updated 08-12-2012 at 07:32 PM by IdahoPilgrim

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  5. Minor League Odyssey – Day Eleven – Interlude

    I pull into the parking lot of the motel just north of Baltimore and get a room for the night. I lay back on the bed for a minute and I realize one thing – I am tired! So tired that I decide to throw dietary cautions to the wind and call the local Pizza Hut for a delivery. As I knew it would be, it has been a long haul these past couple of days, heading out from Fort Myers on Thursday morning, stopping for the night in Somewhere, South Carolina, and then continuing on today through North Carolina, ...

    Updated 08-10-2012 at 07:21 PM by IdahoPilgrim

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  6. Minor League Odyssey – Day Nine – Game Six (Fort Myers)

    I arrive this evening curious to see just how exactly they are going to turn bacon into a promotion. I end up being underwhelmed – all it means is that you can purchase a small paper basket of bacon strips for $1 when you buy any other concession stand item. I choose not to indulge, and judging by how many people I saw carrying those small paper baskets around, not many others do either. They also wrapped the ball for the ceremonial pitch in bacon too (I’m not sure why), but it doesn’t seem to have ...

    Updated 08-09-2012 at 06:45 PM by IdahoPilgrim

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  7. Minor League Odyssey – Day Eight – Game Five (Fort Myers)

    As soon as I get to the stadium tonight, I can tell that I am moving up the chain and getting closer to how things are done in the big leagues – for the first time, I have to pay for parking ($3). The stadium itself is actually a stadium – it isn’t just a ball field surrounded by stands – which you would expect given that it is the spring training home of the parent club. Two main seating options: there are the $9.50 box seats which are individual plastic seats situated in the lower half of the ...

    Updated 08-08-2012 at 03:21 PM by IdahoPilgrim

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  8. Minor League Odyssey – Bonus Coverage – GCL Twins

    I get into Fort Myers about quarter to two – too early to check into the motel, so I decide to buzz out quick to the Lee County Sports Complex to see if I can catch the tail end of the GCL game. Sure enough, I manage to take in the last couple of innings. I drive in the main entrance to Hammond Stadium, go past the empty parking lots, and at the west end of the complex pull off the road onto the grass where a number of cars have created a makeshift parking lot. Walking past the Twins offices here ...

    Updated 08-07-2012 at 09:56 PM by IdahoPilgrim

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  9. Minor League Odyssey – Day Six (Game Four) - Elizabethton

    No game tonight, as the “bible belt” proved to be all-too-true to it’s nickname and gave the residents here a reenactment of Noah’s flood. I pulled out of the parking lot in Johnson City at 6pm in the rain and promptly splashed water over the front of the hood. You could see the sheets of water running down the streets seeking lowest ground. Deciding that baseball is not worth sacrificing either myself or my vehicle (such as in trying to drive to Elizabethton) I decide to head back inside and await ...

    Updated 08-06-2012 at 04:33 PM by IdahoPilgrim

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  10. Minor League Odyssey – Day Five (Game Three) - Elizabethton

    I show up at the ballpark not really knowing what to expect. It is, by far, the smallest of the parks I will be attending (cap. 1500), which is to be expected for a rookie league team. It turns out to be basically a junior college or division III field. That being said, it does have character. It turns out I am visiting on a busy night. As I park the car and walk to the gate, I hear live music coming from inside the concourse. There is a fundraiser going on for the local United Way, with prize giveaways ...

    Updated 08-05-2012 at 02:34 PM by IdahoPilgrim

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  11. Minor League Odyssey - Day Two - Beloit

    After spending a relaxing day in the Janesville/Beloit area (went to see Cave of the Mounds and did some hiking at some local parks), I headed out to the ballpark again a touch earlier this evening. Had to stop at the Culver’s in Beloit to get my free dish of custard for last night’s win. Getting to the ballpark I have time today to walk around a little bit and see what’s there. One main concession stand right near the main entrance (operating at half capacity, and which I did utilize late in the ...

    Updated 08-03-2012 at 07:04 PM by IdahoPilgrim

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  12. Minor League Odyssey - Day One - Beloit

    I got to the stadium around 6:30pm, waited in line to get my ticket (box seat - $9.00), and entered the gates. Almost immediately I had to adjust my stride as I almost walked into one of the Kane County players. The dressing rooms are away from the field, so the players have to walk through the main concourse to get to the dugouts. It immediately drove home to me just how different minor league baseball is at this level from the majors (imagine walking into Target Field on game day and bumping into ...

    Updated 08-01-2012 at 04:33 PM by IdahoPilgrim

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