Wednesday, May 20, 2009

A Dodger Blogger in Vin Scully's Court

10:45 p.m. I ASKED JOE TORRE A QUESTION! It was a stupid one, but still.

"With the off-day tomorrow, do you have any plans to rest regulars during the Angels series?" I asked.

"They'll all rest tomorrow, I think," Joe said.

Ouch.

10:07 p.m. Sweep! Down to the clubhouse. Glad it'll be a happy place.

9:37 p.m. Steinberg was right: People are really singing along with "Don't Stop Believing."

9:35 p.m. Everybody on your feet!

9:32 p.m. They just handed out Casey Blake bobbleheads out to everyone in the press box! The Dodgers are a CLASSY OPERATION.

9:21 p.m. The complimentary Dodger Dogs are out! But I've already stuffed myself at Dave's Diner. I settle for a cookie.

9:14 p.m. Under the lights:

9:08 p.m. The seventh-inning stretch. Nancy Bea Hefley is right with us in the press box!

Nice loud bobblehead-fueled crowd tonight. They've only done the wave once.

8:37 p.m. A condom balloon just floated by. I kid you not.

Is this another one of Charles Steinberg's marketing ideas?

8:27 p.m. Half the press box was watching the end of the Magic-Cavs game.

8:07 p.m. Forgot to mention Mark Sweeney was in uniform, helping out with batting practice. Is he a coach now?

I'm starving. Who has time to eat?

7:29 p.m.: Two on, no out in the first inning. Urge to clap is surprisingly strong, especially since we're surrounded by cheering fans.

7:04 p.m.: McConaughey throwing out the first pitch:

6:00 p.m. Back into the Dodgers' clubhouse. Russell Martin's got these huge headphones on, looking meditative. A man asks Juan Pierre to sign something, Beast Mode obliges. Chad Billingsley walks by. Virtually every member of the team passes through at some point. Which makes perfect sense, if you think about it.

5:50 p.m. Patrick shows me the visitor's clubhouse. Also small. And dull. But there's Livan, and he's got music cranking. (No music in the Dodger clubhouse when I was in there.)

5:30 p.m. Introduce myself to Dylan. Turns out he is one cool motherfucker. "I have you on my RSS feed!" Sweet. Introduces me to Patrick Cain of ESPN the Magazine. Another very cool fellow. Future "Blog Spot" attendees: Seek out Dylan! (Sorry, Dylan.)

4:40 p.m. Onto the field for BP. Remember that scene from Dave as they go on the field? Here's how it starts:

The crack of the bat!

Trying to cover all the bases:

A window into XP's life:

Dodger and Dodger-related people spotted on the field: Eric Collins, Michael Eaves, Steve Lyons, Drew Merle, Rick Monday, Patrick O'Neal, Josh Rawitch, Jon SooHoo, Charley Steiner, Jeanne Zelasko. Ceremonial first pitch-thrower Matthew McConaughey is hanging out and chatting with Torre.

4:20 p.m. Joe Torre's pre-game talk. Lasts 20 minutes. He's pretty candid and seems to have a comfortable relationship with the media. Our group includes Michael Becker, Ken Gurnick, Dylan Hernandez, Ken Levine, Ben Maller, Doug Padilla, Josh Suchon.

4:00 p.m. Hit the clubhouse. Chat with the very helpful usher working the door. The clubhouse is smaller than you'd expect. Hey, professional baseball players! Be cool, Orel. Joe Jareck gives some helpful tips.

3:49 p.m. Unfrozen. There is one player on the field, practicing his bunting. His name is BEAST MODE.

3:48 p.m. A stentorian voice, louder than you'd expect, at the back of the press box. I freeze.

3:47 p.m. The view from the press box—er, the Vin Scully Press Box:

3:36 p.m. Just saw Charley Steiner. He is beardless. Repeat, beardless.

3:29 p.m. Greetings from the Vin Scully Press Box. That's right, from inside the Vin Scully Press Box. What the hell am I doing here? Well, if you thought Josh Rawitch (Vice President, Communications) was cutting-edge in creating Blogger Night, now he's positively bleeding-edge in granting some of us bloggers media credentials. Meaning that today, I, SoSG Orel, have access to the press box. And the clubhouse. And the field.

I've never been in a press box or clubhouse of any sort. (The field? Once.) I've never even taken the Dodger Stadium tour. My main points of reference are Eight Men Out and Ball Four. (Josh and his staff have kindly compiled a list of basic media etiquette, so rest assured I do know enough not to cheer in the press box, or to ask for autographs. Especially during an at-bat. That would be embarrassing.)

My primary mission is to get you Joe Torre's pre- and post-game quotes as quickly as possible. Those will go up in separate posts. My secondary mission is just to observe, and to pick up my jaw off the ground before anyone trips on it. Because I want to get used to this.

So stick around as your humble blogger brings you his impressions of behind-the-scenes Dodgerdom. I'll update this post throughout the day, and look for me in tonight's Game Thread. Go Blue!

P.S.: Thanks to Josh Suchon for the wireless help!

58 comments:

kroxx said...

How cool!!!

I am curious, what other things are on the list of basic media etiquette?

Looking forward to the updates!

Rob said...

Congratulations!

Orel said...

Kroxx: Generally use common sense. It's basically an office...just one attached to Dodger Stadium.

Rob: Thanks! I'm quietly freaking out a little bit.

Steve Sax said...

Great shot of the laptop, Orel!

ernest said...

Way to go Orel!!! I look forward to reading about anything.

Hey, can you walk around taking pictures or do you have a tape recorder to do interviews?

Keven C said...

Try not to get trampled in the clubhouse. It's pretty cramped in there.

Eric Stephen said...

I'm looking forward to your updates, then stealing any great ideas you have in coverage strategy for Saturday. :)

Orel said...

Pictures are not allowed in the clubhouse. Press box is okay, although we want to avoid picturing people at work. This may be like an office, but it's not like "The Office."

I'm going to use my iPhone to record any interviews.

Thanks for the tip, Keven. About to venture forth.

Orel said...

Steal away, Eric! Although I'm clean out of good ideas right now.

Webmeister said...

Can you bring a laptop and camera to the press box? Do they have wireless internet?
vr, Xei

Alex Cora said...

Dude, that is AWESOME! Have a great (and professional) time.

Brandon said...

I'll be there on Sunday, I'm looking forward to reading your report.

Steve Sax said...

xei, are you reading the rest of this post / these comments?
vr, SS

Erin said...

Orel, I got the letter about the media guidelines the other day, and I about cried. I can't wait to get back to town so I can do the same thing.

Webmeister said...

Saxy, no I'm not. What's up.
vr, Xei

Rob said...

Some years ago, I shared a tiny press box at Rancho Cucamonga with Rich Lederer on the occasion of Jered Weaver's first professional start. I found the press box rules so annoying I decided then and there I never wanted to be in another one; you must suppress all your native urges as a fan, and that to me is a dreadful chore. But good luck with your maiden run!

Natalie said...

Very cool, Orel! Have an awesome night!!

Brandon said...

Ask Torre...with Andre Either slumping so bad is there any chance XP could work his way into the lineup?

Brandon said...

If only for one game. Would never advocate sitting Ethier for longer than a game.

Eric Stephen said...

Brandon, X-man is starting tonight, but for Kemp.

Orel, what app are you using on the iPhone to record?

Also, that is a beautiful shot of the Stadium!

Neeebs said...

Orel:

That must be Fan F***ing tastic.

Q, is one rule that you are not allowed to ask Andre Either to pose for a picture so that it doesn't end up on Myspace or Facebook. Just curious.

Also, please try to keep that Lady Ga Ga poker face when Russell Martin hits his first HR of the season tonight.

Steve Sax said...

Xei, I'm pretty sure the answers to all of your questions can be derived from the post / comments...kuo take a look!
vr, SS

Neeebs said...

We can have a contest to guess what the heck "vr" stands for.

Brandon said...

I'm willing to guess "very respectfully."

Brandon said...

I guess Ethier should be starting tonight. He is hitting .429 against Hernandez.

Time for some slump busting.

rbnlaw said...

Orel,
Of course Steiner is beardless. Right now there can only be one Beard and it's on Blakes chin.
Even his bobblehead has a beard.

Have a good game in the box and below.

Webmeister said...

ss, that's fine I will ask Phil. I read the post and the comments as you suggested. Still doesn't say if you can bring your own laptop or not. I can assume that's your own, but you know it's an assumption. Like I said, if you don't want to answer and feel the question(s) are dumb, then I will ask others. Have fun.
vr, Xei

Chris said...

Hey Orel, I'm representing in the "blog spot" for Friday's game. Let me know if we can talk tomorrow on the phone or something as I'd love to hear your perspective.

Steve Sax said...

xei, we're just pulling your leg

--photo in the post is of Orel's laptop, in the press box, so I assume laptops are okay (unless they've confiscated it already)

--he also took the picture from the press box, which okays the camera (though to be fair, I don't think it's an SLR)

--the post also mentions "thanks to Josh Suchon for help with the wireless access", thereby evidencing the wireless access available.

I never insinuated the questions were dumb--they make sense. I just was trying to tell you that the answers were referenced as part of the post, so I thought you would have read the post on which you chose to comment.

No worries, we're happy to help you.

Neeebs said...

Don't forget to tell him about our witty repartee that we have here, all in good FUN, and with malice towards none.

Neeebs said...

Hell, I have three (e)s in my name.

Loney Fan said...

I'm very jealous. Are you going to ask Torre about why Matt Kemp is not starting? Or why he is in a lineup spot that befuddles most of the readers of this site?

Loney Fan said...

Yeah, three E's in one name is the dumbest thing I have ever seen in my life. You have to be some kind of a**hole to do that. But I would never say that to Neeebs because there is no malice on this site.

Orel said...

"Can you bring a laptop and camera to the press box? Do they have wireless internet?"

Yes, yes and yes.

"Orel, what app are you using on the iPhone to record?"

iTalk. VoiceNotes is also good.

Chris: Shoot me an e-mail.

Neeebs said...

LF that's aaa**hole to you.

And didn't I kick your aaa*hole in March Madness?

:-)

Loney Fan said...

I'm pretty sure I beat everyone in my March Madness bracket

rbnlaw said...

I'm feeling the love here.

karina said...

Wow, Orel, i bet you're having the time of your life, have fun! (i'll look forward to your coverage)

Guys, is that much affection the definition of bromance?

Fred's Brim said...

nice work Orel! I used to work in sports media relations (the Rawitch side of the fence) and it's a pretty fun time. Have you learned the sportswriter's motto yet?
"If it's free, i'll take three!"

enjoy the buffet!

Loney Fan said...

Neeebs and I definitely have a Dodger bromance.

Eric Stephen said...

It was a nice pitch by M McConaughey

Eric Karros said...

Very cool, Orel.

Eric Stephen said...

Orel, do you get a bobblehead?

Orel said...

Alas, no. I suppose I could have tried to get one, but this experience is much better. Much, much better.

Orel said...

Torre quotes are up. Explains resting Kemp and two of next week's starters.

Eric Stephen said...

That's Dr. Steinberg to you! The love doctor.

Orel said...

Nice.

Fred's Brim said...

i caught a glimpse of the condom balloon on the mets telecast!

Orel said...

New mascot!

Eric Stephen said...

Nice!!! Glad you got a bobblehead.

Steve Sax said...

Eric, methinks you're going to have a grand time at the game this weekend...

Eric Stephen said...

Sax, the only thing that could make it better is if Steve Perry himself showed up! :)

Orel said...

The game is almost an afterthought.

Steve Sax said...

Eric, that is a pretty funny comment given our blogger night story. Nice.

If I don't talk to you before then--have a great time Eric.

Chris said...

Eric, have a blast! I'm going on Friday and can't tell you how psyched I am.

Orel, I shot you an email at the SOSG email address. Looking forward to connecting, and great job asking Torre a question!

Eric Stephen said...

Sax, Orel, and Chris...thanks. I'm looking forward to Saturday. I have a lot to live up to with Orel's prolific posting today!

Chris, have a great time tomorrow.

Brandon said...

Orel, great job!

As I mentioned earlier I'll be covering the game on Sunday for Reflections of Blue...so nervous.

I'll be emailing with questions.

Falling LEAVes said...

I like singing along to "Don't Stop Believing"... don't laugh... but I didn't realize they posted the lyrics on the scoreboard till yesterday's game ... my ninth homegame of the year... silly me... I'm usually too absorbed watching the players moving around. Man, if your picture of the third base side of the field level was more clear, I wonder if I could find myself in there... my friend got me an I-Talk device for my Ipod. I love it!