Last night I drove up to Milwaukee with a couple friends to take in the Indians and Brewers game on "Major League" night. Fans sitting in certain sections (including ours) were treated to a talking Harry Doyle bobblehead, which we picked up shortly before the game began. Things went downhill from there.
Despite time spent sitting in traffic, the drive up from Chicago was a treat, because a hours of just shooting the breeze with two of my oldest and closest friends isn't something tI get to do all that often anymore. We arrived at Miller Park roughly an hour before first pitch, and settled in on the hood of my friend's car to drink a couple beers in the parking lot. We spotted a number of Tribe jerseys on people walking into the stadium, most of which had "Vaughn," "Cerrano," or "Dorn" across the back.
We went in, picked up our bobbleheads from a table on the concourse, bought some brats and something called "Nachos on a Stick," and went to our seats. Bob Uecker, who is far more popular in Wisconsin than any Brewers player, threw out the first pitch, and looked damned good doing it for an 81-year-old man who has had multiple operations on his ticker.
Our seats were in a spot without a view of the right-field corner, but as soon as Gerardo Parra lined Danny Salazar's first pitch down the right-field line, I announced it would be a triple. I still have no idea if Brandon Moss fumbled the ball or was just really slow getting to it, but that was not the way I wanted Salazar's night to begin. An inning later, when Jean Segura, who hadn't homered in a month and a half, cranked one over the fence to make it 3-0 Milwaukee, I started to sense it wasn't going to be the Tribe's night.
The Indians put runners in scoring position in the 2nd, 3rd, 4th, and 5th innings, but couldn't get even one of them home, a common them in recent weeks for the team. I found it far more frustrating to watch in person than on TV, especially Michael Bourn, who struck out three times and in the one at bat he didn't whiff, did something even worse, hitting into an inning-ending double play when there was a man on third base. That was one of four double plays the Indians hit into last night, matching their highest GIDP total from the last five years.
Salazar looked great after that 2nd-inning home run, not giving up another hit through the end of the 6th inning and running his strikeout total for the game up to 8. He was at 91 pitches, and had another good inning in him, but that's when NL baseball reared its ugly head, as with one run in and a man on second base with one out, Terry Francona decided to pinch hit for Salazar. David Murphy came in and struck out, the Indians didn't score another run, Zach McAllister came in to pitch, and by the time the bottom of the 7th ended, a 3-1 deficit had ballooned to 7-1, and that was that.
Carlos Santana reached safely for the third time of the game, because he loves me as much as I love him, and Parra hit a second triple, which I don't think is something I'd ever seen a player do in person before, and the Indians made three outs in the 9th inning in roughly 47 seconds, sending us on our way back to the car.
There was one other event worth noting though, which took place during the top of the 7th inning. A woman sitting behind us, who'd been talking loudly about everything under the sun all game long, suddenly climbed over the seats and took a seat next to one of my friends. All I initially heard was her say, "So you're a Brewers fan..." (which he is). My other friend and I thought she was drunkenly planning to flirt with him, and most of what she rambled on about for the next few minutes was difficult to hear. What eventually became clear though, is that her reason for talking to our friend was to ask him to ask me to stop moving my head around so much, which was apparently detracting from her stadium experience.
We had a good laugh about it, but now I'll forever have a complex about moving my head when in a crowded place. I've never thought of myself as someone who moves their head more than the average person, but what of this inebriated Wisconsinite was right?