Thursday, August 25, 2011

Baseball trip 2011 - KC and the Sunshine Band

As you can see, Sax has done a pretty comprehensive recap of our trip. Which leaves me the random crap to write about. The background on me is that I DO love baseball, but I DON'T do baseball trips. Unlike Sax, I have only seen 10 baseball stadiums (now with KC and St Louis) with 2 of those stadiums having been torn down. I really went to spend some quality time with Sax and the other "non-Son" and with Mrs. Cora giving me the OK, I was on my way.

Traveling with the guys is always fun as they have access to the lounge at the airport. The bonus was when we walked in, a fellow traveler who was leaving gave me his 2 unused free cocktail drink cards. Score! These were quickly snatched up by Sax and 2 bloody mary's popped up in front of us (at 1 pm no less).

View from the American Airlines airport lounge - Is that our plane?"

When we landed in KC (after a layover in Dallas - GO LAKERS!), we raced over to the Jack Stack BBQ rib joint. Pretty neat ambiance as it is located in an old rail yard. The place was huge, but getting there so late, I think the staff was more concerned about getting us out of there so they could clean up and go home. The waitress even spilled some of the wine she was pouring on the table and didn't even acknowledge the "party foul". Grrrr...that is some expensive wine lady! The food was pretty good, but everything was so big I was ashamed that I couldn't eat it all and even more ashamed that I couldn't take it home for some wicked leftovers. Also, even though we were full, the kitchen was closed and they were not serving dessert. Wouldn't you think that a place would want to milk as much money as possible out of you? Off we went to the hotel for some much needed rest to get up early for the next day.

Jack Stack's BBQ.

Gluttony baby.

Hey that place looks familiar!

As for the game, Sax took many of the same pictures that I took, but I have to give the Royals serious props with the Hall of Fame museum. The Dodgers MUST do this and make it accessible to EVERYONE! I know that they have some great memorabilia on the club suite level, but not everyone can get to it. Build something beyond the outfield and it is sure to have a line out the door. Here are some pictures of the museum to inspire the Dodger architects.

Ok Kevin Appier wasn't that great, but seeing a huge ring is pretty cool.

The original Matt Kemp - BO Knows Baseball.


Hot pants night. Sweet.

El Segundo's own George Brett.

Gold Gloves.

One baseball for each of Brett's hits. Look how much pine tar is on George Brett's bat!

Cy Young Awards. Kershaw, yours is waiting.

World Series trophy. Not many years before the Dodgers last one. (Sigh)

I see where they get the Sunshine part of the KC and the Sunshine Band. It was hot and humid and I don't do well with either one. It was kinda sad to see more red Boston fans that blue KC fans, but I guess that's life of a KC fan (and evidence of the Boston bandwagon). Here are some of the food offerings at the lovely stadium.

My sad meatball sandwich and pepsi.

Didn't see anyone get the turkey leg, but I always imagined it would look like those ones the vikings eat.

Funnel Cake Fries. Gotta love the midwest.

Did I mention that it was hot? I had to take some breaks and walk around the shaded concourse when I ran into a bunch of guys standing around, drinking beers, and wearing Dodger shirts. I walked up to them and asked "Is this where the Dodger fans stand?" It was great to talk to fellow Dodger fans and road trippers. Looks like they do one of these trips a year. We agreed that the stadium in KC was pretty, but small compared with LA, McCourt needs to leave, and the Dodgers need to build a Hall of Fame at Chavez Ravine. Looks like they buy cheap tickets and just walk around the stadium drinking beers and eating. Nice. Hope the rest of the trip as great guys!!! And if you guys are reading this, comment below to tell us your thoughts on KC and St Louis!

A la Milwaukee, the Hot Dog Races with little kids in Mustard, Ketchup, and Pickle Relish. Mustard won (and Sax took my 20 bucks).

Dustin Pedroia at the plate. Dude is kinda short, but can blister the ball.

My inner technophile side was raving about the great scoreboard!

Fellow Dodger fans in KC.

Running the bases after the game was great. It was also fun to interact with the other KC fans. It was a thrill for me to get down on the field, as one doesn't get to do this very often. It was fun jumping against the padded outfield wall, feeling the warning track gravel crackle under your shoes, and stepping on a real base and home plate. Such a simple activity, but one that conjures so many childhood fantasies.

View from the centerfield warning track. Looking up at the sun, I have no idea how these professional ballplayers catch a flyball - even a can of corn.

Foul Pole.

We were all winners today!

Thanks KC for a great time!

After the game, we were pretty famished (along with a touch of heat stroke) so we stopped at Arthur Bryant's for rehydration and ribs. Sax's recommendation was great and I actually liked this better than Jack Stacks. Plus Sax paid, so it tasted even better. All in all, the first leg of the trip was great. I don't know if or when I will ever get back to Kansas City, but if I do, I know that I need to get back to the beautiful stadium! Thanks KC!

Great place. I think better than the other fancier KC place.

Earlier: Part 1, Getting to Kaufmann Stadium; Part 2, The Fountains; Part 3, Fun Stuff And The Royals Hall Of Fame; Part 4, Baking In The KC Sun; Part 5, Running The Bases