For those of you who have been obsessed with Norway for the last 24 hours, let me break the spell by bringing you back, back, back in time to June 5, the last game I attended at Dodger Stadium.
We played the Braves, and as you can tell by the sidebar, the result wasn't pretty: a 9-3 loss, thanks to a disastrous seven-run seventh inning in which Chad Billingsley, Ramon Troncoso, and and Ronald Belisario all melted down at once. For Billingsley, who had pitched six shutout innings, it was depressing. For Troncoso, who only got one out and gave up 3 ER, it was inexcusable.
Nevertheless, Mrs. Sax and I had a great time at the park, so here are some photos of the evening that I wanted to record for posterity.
First up, we noticed Security getting briefed as we walked into the stadium on the field level, which was a first. I've bemoaned the lack of visible ushers at the Stadium before, but I have to say, at this game, it was noticeable that the ushers were coming down the aisles during inning breaks to scan the crowds and provide some assistance. That's a positive step from what I noticed earlier this year, when they stayed up top at the concourses (if ushers were indeed there at all).
However, I still think there's room for Dodger Stadium security to improve. The ushers' descent to the front of each aisle during inning breaks is a visible reminder of security, but it's also noticeable that there isn't an usher dedicated to each aisle. And worse than that, the beachballs--oh, those cursed beachballs--which bounce around with reckless abandon, blocking views and spilling drinks and keeping people from watching the game: they frolic around the stands unabated nowadays, unlike prior years when ushers would discreetly chase and pop said beachballs. I know I sound like a crusty curmudgeon here, but in our game I also saw a woman in the Baseline Club (on the third base side) get hit in the arm with a screamer foul ball, and she was taken away by medical personnel. It's a good reminder that fans really need to be watching the game, not a beachball. And I wish Dodger Stadium security would get back on that crusade.
And now for my obligatory section immortalizing random people! Congratulations, Luis Olague, 7-year-old Emma Fong, and about-to-be-whipped Howard Halen! (I do hope Dodger Stadium wasn't the last stop of the evening, Howard--and best of luck to you and Liz this weekend on your big day (June 27, right?)!)
Lines for the concessions are still ridiculously long...
...and what's worse, the monitors were showing COMMERCIALS during the middle of an inning (note the 0-1 count with two out, and the fact that the image has nothing to do with the game in play. It's bad enough that these monitors, circa 1980-style tube televisions with faded images, usually run on a five-second delay from play on the field. Now, they don't even show the play itself, making one's time in line even more excruciating.).
Mrs. Sax and I skipped town right after the seventh-inning bludgeoning ended, with the images of the massacre imprinted on the backs of our eyelids. Let's get a win for Mrs. Sax next time.