Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Six Down, Twenty Four To Go!

That was an experience!  Last night I made the trip over to Arlington visit my sixth big league park:  Rangers Ballpark in Arlington. 

If only the Jays could one day again obtain a fan base like these Rangers have.  The atmosphere was incredible.  On a Monday night they drew 37000 screaming Ranger fans who were all there to support their team and their love of the game, not just because it's something to do or they scored free tickets from somewhere.  That place was loud, and you could count the number of people who left before the game was over on one hand.  Everybody stayed until Feliz threw that final pitch to Ichiro to end the game and earn his first save of this young 2011 season.

Not only was it a great game, nice park, and great place to watch a game, but there was plenty to do before the game too with a number of kids games, attractions, and of course lots of shops to pick up the latest Ranger gear.

I wasn't there to experience any of the hoopla however.  I was there to watch Canadian Erik Bedard make his first start since 2009 against these Rangers in their home ranch.

Above:  Canadian Erik Bedard plays long toss before last night's bout with the Rangers at Ranger's Ballpark in Arlington.
Below:   Olivio and Bedard loosening up before last night's game.

The results?  Not great, but not bad for a first time out.  Bedard appeared to have a little bit of trouble locating his pitches early on, but he settled down and went on to throw 96 pitches over 5 innings, 60 of those for strikes.  Bedard gave up 5 runs, 3 of them earned on 4 hits.  He struck out 3 and walked 2 along the way.

Unfortunately 2 of the 4 hits allowed by Bedard were home runs.  One to Elvis Andrus in the first, and one to Nelson Cruz in the fourth inning.  The home run from Cruz is his fourth in as many games.

Bedard pitches to Josh Hamilton in the first inning of last night's 6-4 loss to the Rangers.

Again, not a great start, but not a bad one from Bedard.  3 earned runs on 4 hits over 5 innings against a hot team in their home park.  It could have been much worse.

The Blue Jays are back in action tonight on their first "Tweeting Tuesday" at the Rogers Centre where they welcome the Oakland Athletics for a three game set before heading out west to take on Vernon Wells and the Angels in Anaheim.  The Jays will send Jo Jo Reyes to the hill and the A's will counter with Brandon McCarthy.  I won't get to watch or listen to tonight's game but I will be sure to read the box score and check the highlights later. 

Tonight's my last night in Texas.  Tomorrow I do the trek back to Ontario and reality, so I'm not likely to post tomorrow.  Then again, you never know.  If something exciting happens tonight, then I will tell you all about it tomorrow.

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