Monday, July 18, 2016



With the season at the half way point, the Eastern League will showcase it's best players in the All Star Game. One of the reasons I got the season tickets was because of the All Star game. This will make my first of any All Star week that I have attended. I'm excited to see the celebrity softball game, Homerun derby (two Ducks in the showcase) and of course the All Star game itself. Friday night concert in Lock 3 was Aerosmith tribute band Aeroforce.

12 Jul
The EL All Star celebration kicked off with the celebrity softball game. Both teams had former Indians and local celebrities. Team (Carlos) Baerga vs Team (Dave)Wallace at first it looked like team Baerga was going to make it a laugher after posting a 10 run top of the 3rd inning. But, team Wallace answered with a two out 8 run rally in the bottom of the 3rd inning. In the end Team Baerga won 18 - 17.

The night was not over, as the top EL homerun hitters had their chance to show off their power in the Homerun Derby. There were two Duck players in the showcase, Bradley Zimmer and Nellie Rodriguez. In the first round I sat in my seat and watched on onslaght of power by the eight players. After the first round it looked like the two Ducks players made it to the second round, but after further review Zimmer had 7 HR and Rodriguez had 8 HR. Zimmer was out and Rodriguez was the last Duck to represent the local fan favorite. In the Second round I mover the the Homerun porch in left field. It was a made house. Hundreds of people (mostly kids and fathers) trying to catch the elusive homerun ball. Rodriguez tied for second and went on to the final round. With no chance at a ball I mover the the first base side and watch the final round. Rodriguez put on a power hitting clinic, but it was not enough as he finished second in the homerun derby. I usually don't stay for the firework show, but  tonight I mad an exception. Lot of Ohio and local band music played to the fireworks.

13 Jul
I was driving to the stadium and I saw the Goodyear blimp as I drove into Hartville. When I got the the stadium the blimp arrived. I beat the blimp to the stadium? I guess the blimp got stuck in traffic.

I kind of thought that it would be crazy to try and get autographs during the All Star game, and it was. I could have gotten the VIP pass with my season ticket holder points, but there was no All Star team set and I did not have cards from every player. I thought it would be wasting my points so I did not do it, I was just a baseball fan. Former Indians manager Mike Hargrove threw out the first pitch to Carlos Baerga behind the plate.

Then, the EL All Star game was in full swing. There was even a flyover during the National Anthem. (Sorry no PIC) In the 5th inning after the third out all the kids where running down the stairs and leaning on the dugout asking for the player to throw them the ball and out of nowhere for the corner of my eye I see a ball thrown from the dugout by a different player, I grabbed it. My First game used All Star baseball. I don't know what player did it, but I will never forget it. The game was lopsided as the Eastern Division powered there way to 10-2 victory while pounding out 20 hits to the Western Division only collecting 5 hits.

14-17 Jul

The kick off to the second half of the season where the Ducks host the Erie SeaWolves for a four game series.Akron current 1.5 back in the division needs to start out of the gates strong and but a winning streak together.

Game one: I got to the stadium at 5:00pm to watch BP and hope for an All Star ball. No All Star ball, but did get four balls. Three were practice balls and got my first 2016 AZ spring training ball. Good thing I got a game used All Star Ball during the game, the team shop was selling them for $12 a piece.

I was at the Ducks dugout close to the entrance to the clubhouse. I wanted to get the coaching staff autographs. When they come out they stay close to that side, however they did not come out today until the last second and did not have time to get them. I did get four autographs before the game.

After a long week where most of the team had a few days off Zimmer and Frazier both had the night off. I noticed the Eric Stamets was called up to Columbus. Good for him and I wish him luck, but I think he was the spark plug Ducks. Whenever he was in the lineup the team did good. Now that Stamets is gone, Zimmer and Frazier has the night off it doesn't look good for the home team. Erie jumped on the board 4-0 by the second inning and added one more in the 7th. Nellie Rodriguez hit a solo homer in the 8th, but by then it was to late. Duck lost 5-3.

In the 8th inning the sun was setting and the sky was pink and purple. I moved to the first base side to get some good pictures.

After I took the picture I gave away three BP baseballs and wouldn't you know I got a foul ball off the bat of Akron's Jordan Smith.

Game two: I arrived early again for BP. I Called out Erie's Cal Drummond and later Tommy Collier and both of them threw me up a ball. To my surprise both balls were 2016 AZ Spring Training Balls. I would get three more balls at BP. Before the game I got eight Ducks autographs. During the game I called out Jeremy Lucas name as he was returning to the dugout after the third out and threw me the ball, but some old guy sitting next to me jumped out of his seat and snagged it from me. I let him have it, then I showed him the five I got a BP.

Michael Brantley rehab assignment with his second stent on the DL was in Ducks lineup.

He looked good in the field chasing down ball. With his bat he could not get a hit going 0-4. The Ducks won 2-0. On my way out of the stadium I gave three of the baseball away to kids.

I arrived at Lock 3 to see the last three songs of the first set of Aeroforce. The Second set was all early 70's songs. What a night of good old Rock n' Roll.  At the end the guiterest threw out his pick and I chased it down. Then some lady came out of nowhere and jumped on me trying to take the pick away from me. I told her I would give it to her. She did not believe me and would not get off of me. Then, she said she would give me $5 for it. I still told I would give it to her. When we stood up I gave her the pick for free. She jumped on my and would not stop hugging me. It's only a tribute band with a common pick nothing special. Then her friend came over and started to hug me too.

Next Friday is Nightrain a Guns n' Roses tribute band. I have already talked Hiromi into coming with me. GnR is a special band in our relationship. The night before I went to see them live in Tokyo was the night I meet Hiromi. If I would have not gone to see GnR in concert we would have never meet. I'm hoping to post about this night next week... stay tune.

Game three: Newly enforce stadium rule NO early entrance to Saturday games, So I showed up at first pitch. It was a good pitcher dual lasting just over 2 hours. One bad pitch by Duck pitcher in the fourth that was hit for a homerun was the only scoring in the game. Ducks lost 1-0. The game was over and the sun did not even set yet, not good for a fireworks night. I did not stay for the fireworks so don't know if they still had it after the game or did they wait for the sky to get dark.

Game four: The final game of this home stand to see if we can split the series or do we start the second half of the season with a losing record? I arrived early for BP, there was not BP this Sunday. I did get to see the Ducks pitchers workout  and got 8 autographs. I also got to walk the outfield pre-game to play catch, but I did not have anyone so I walked around taking pictures. I got a close up of a ball that got stuck in the outfield wall during the Homerun derby. The I took one of me making a catch at the wall and the with the Areos/Ducks Eastern League Championships

Michael Brantley was back in the lineup. His bat was nowhere to be found as he went 0-3. I got a game used foul ball toss up by Akron's JD Brown (pitcher), Ducks lost 8-5.

After a great start to the season, then a drop off at the end was the only thing keeping Akron alive. After the first week of the second half of the season the Ducks are 51-44, fall into third place and out of the playoff berth. Next week on the road for seven games, where will Akron stand in the playoff berth when they return?

Week 14 Haul

Week's total: 4 games, 12 balls (6 give-a-way), 20 autographs
Games: 1 day  3 night  0 doubleheader   Home record: 1-3

Akron's total: 38 games, 133 balls (56 give-a-way), 131 autographs, 2 bat, 9 SGA,
Games: 9 day  29 night  1 doubleheader   Home record: 25-13

2016 baseball season total: 55 games, 165 balls (61 give-a-way), 216 autographs, 9 bats

Sunday, July 10, 2016



A bit of good news for the RubberDucks... the Eastern League All Star roster have been chosen and there are six Ducks player who will be represented in front of their home crowd next week. They are;
Clint Frazier, Bradley Zimmer, Nellie Rodriguez, Jeremy Lucas, Shawn Morimando and  Perci Garner. Unfortunately or fortunately (depends on how you look at at it) Morimando and Garner were promoted to AAA Columbus and will not be on the All Star roster. However, two other Ducks have replaced them on the roster in Luis Head and JP Feyereisen. Next week will be busy a one for Frazier as he was also selected to represent the USA Team in the Sirius/XM Futures game in MLB All Star week in San Diego on July 10th. Another Indians minor leaguer Francisco Majia was also selected to represent the World Team in the Futures game too. It was also good news for two Indians who was selected to their first All Star games Francisco Lindor and Danny Salazar.   There was a late addition to the AL All Star roster where Corey Kluber was add to replace and injured player.

Before the All Star festivities kick off the Ducks has business to complete this week with a four game home stand against the division leading Altoona Curve. From most of the games I've seen the Ducks handled the Curve and have a good record against them. Only 1.5 games back in the standings this is the perfect time for the Ducks to retake the division lead.

Game one: Did not attend, spent 4th of July with family. Ducks won 5-3.

Game two: Cult movie classic night Willy Wanka and the Chocolate Factory and a fan came out in costume.

I don't no for sure, but since Eric Stamets came off the DL the Ducks are 3-1.Whatever it may be the Ducks came out to play tonight. Jordan Smith set the tone for the defense with an outfield assist gunning a runner out a second. The starting pitcher DJ Brown flashed the leather starting not one but two ending inning double plays. The offence was just as good with Bradley Zimmer started the onslaught with a solo homer in the first and then following that up with a 2RBI double in the third. Not to be out done Mike Papi had even a better game with a 2RBI triple in the fourth and caped off the night in style with a grand slam in the seventh.
The Ducks minor league team set are out and I got three sets. One set is for my collection and the other two are for autographs.

Game three:I arrived early for BP and got one ball before the staff put the rain tarp on the field. It rained for hard for about 30 minutes and then stopped. They used weighted rubberducks to hold the tarp down from the winds.

The tarp was removed and the game started on time.

The defense once again flashed the leather when Mike Papi threw a canon from the deep left field corner to get a runner at second. The offence did not disappoint either scoring 6 runs in the 2 second inning. This was a team effort as eight Ducks had a RBI as they won 8-4. Julian Merryweather picked up his first career AA win after getting promoted from Lynchburg. I saw another first tonight. Leading off the game in the bottom of the first the music and PA was still playing, but the time clock hit zero and batter was giving a strike by the umpire. The home plate umpire was dramatic behind the plate call strikes, screaming loud and pointing his finger. Close, but not as bad as the umpire scene from the 1988 movie Naked Gun.

I had a good night for autographs too, I got 7 from Altoona and 16 from Akron.

Game four: Arrived early for BP and the tarp was on the field again. A few seconds after I entered the rain came. But, just like last night the clouds cleared and the game started on time.

One costly error by the pitcher scoring 2 unearned run was all Altoona need to take the lead and keep it. Ducks lost 6-2.

Akron won the series 3-1 and took the lead back in their division by .5 game. They are on the road this weekend to close of the first half of the season before the All Star game in Canal Park next week.

Week 13 Haul

Week's total: 3 games, 1 balls (0 give-a-way), 23 autographs
Games: 0 day  3 night  0 doubleheader   Home record: 2-1
Akron's total: 34 games, 121 balls (50 give-a-way), 111 autographs, 2 bat, 9 SGA,
Games: 8 day  26 night  1 doubleheader   Home record: 24-10

2016 baseball season total: 49 games, 153 balls (55 give-a-way), 196 autographs, 9 bats

Eastern League All Star Game at Canal Park.

Thursday, July 7, 2016



We have completed all our holiday shopping and running around. We have locked ourselves in the campground and are not leaving until the holiday weekend is over.... It's gonna be crazy out there!

Monday I finally found a tripod at the flea market. I knew if I keep going back sooner or later I would fine one. It's a good size, small when it's folded up and pretty tall and sturdy when opened to it's full size.


Thursday was a big spending day. I found some GoPro accessories (gooseneck and roll bar mount) at Wal Mart for cheap. I don't know why, but I did not ask either. We also found a portable propane grill at Target (assembly required). After three plus year our charcoal grilling we burned a hole in the bottom and was needing to get replaced.

I have been working on ideas for my Youtube channel and it went live last week. My first episode is an intro to why I set up the channel and what kind of videos I will be posting. You can view all my vlog post by clicking on the Youtube icon to the right. (If the link is not working, let me know) Along with my blog post I will post a video every 5-7 days. Right now I'm using a GoPro and Fuji Film XP for my videos. When shooting in low light the video is a little dark. The sound on the GoPro is OK as long as I not using it with the waterproof case. These are just a couple things I have noticed. Hopefully, I can work on the lighting and sound to make the videos better. This summer will be easy, but once we leave and head to TN for Amazon it will get tricky. I just hope I can keep up. Sometimes it was hard to keep the blog up to date when I'm on the road and now I will be doing videos too. I think that is why I said I'll post about once a week to start.

To clear the air, I did NOT start the Youtube channel to make extra money. I will NEVER ask for anyone to donate. I'm doing it because I like taking pictures and editing videos. Also, sometimes I might not write in depth details on where we are and I think showing the videos will make it feel like you are right there beside us. All I do ask is if you like my videos to give it a thumbs up and subscribe to my channel. Because, I will not post in this blog every time that I have a new video uploaded. However, I will post it on Facebook so my family and friends will know.

1 Jul
I hope this is not a sign of thing to come this weekend as we woke up to rain. When the rain finally stopped one of our canopy strap stitching ripped off by the rain. After the canopy dries I will have to glue or tape it back together.  

2-4 Jul

Cutty's kept me busy with lots of actives to photograph and videos to shoot all weekend long. Lots of kid actives so I will not post pictures. I did get some nice sunset pictures and even got some help from Hiromi in one of the picture.