Dodgers at Mets – NLDS Game 3

October 13th, 2015 Posted in Citi Field, NLDS, Playoffs | No Comments »

Lines to enter

2006 was the last time the Mets were in the playoffs and I was lucky enough to see a few games. (My 2006 NLDS pictures. 2006 NLCS Game 1 pictures. 2006 NLCS Game 2 pictures.) Fast forward to the present and the Mets are back in the playoffs and I’m again lucky to be able to travel in from Chicago for the NLDS games against the Dodgers.

Jackie Robinson Rotunda

NLDS game 3 on Monday night was incredible. From every member of the Dodgers getting heavily booed, to the surprise of seeing Ruben Tejada lined up with his team to Rusty Staub’s ceremonial first pitch to Tim Teufel.

Ruben Tejada!

Mets and Dodgers

Rusty Staub first pitch

Matt Harvey was on the mound which always brings extra excitement. After an initial delay of the Dodgers replay equipment (very fitting) not working, Harvey got started. You could somewhat tell that it was going to be one of those games where he battled. He went 5 innings giving up 3 runs.



On the rest of the pitching front, Bartolo Colon and Addison Reed came in from the pen and did well. Erik Goeddel came in too, but didn’t do well, giving up 3 runs without even recording an out. Jeurys Familia came in and took care of business to help the Mets hold on for the win.

Bartolo Colon

Jeurys Familia


Luckily, the Mets offense came alive and though the team was down early, they took a lead and never looked back. Travis d’Arnaud and Curtis Grandson got things going in the 2nd and d’Arnaud kept his big game going again in the 3rd with a two-run home run. Later, the Dodgers intentionally walked David Wright. And it backfired.

Travis d'Arnaud home run


If Citi Field had a roof, it might’ve blown off when Yoenis Céspedes went deep in the 4th. His home run was lined off his bat and everyone knew it. And his bat flip was epic:


Mets win!

Mets win!

It was a great, great night. Even better? I was there with my dad.

My dad and I

Full set of pictures is here. All in-game pictures taken from section 507.

Playoff Game Watches!

October 1st, 2015 Posted in Uncategorized | No Comments »

It’s finally time that the Mets are back in the playoffs! The pitching we have and the trade deadline additions have made it an exciting second half of the season. That said, there will be some game watches at a NY friendly place: Racine Plumbing located at 2642 N Lincoln Avenue. NLDS game 1 vs. the Dodgers will be Friday October 9 at 8:45 CT. Game 2 is Saturday October 10 at 8:07 CT. Come on out and watch with fellow fans!

Shameless plug, the last time the Mets were in the NLDS, they beat the Dodgers and I was there:

Mets NLDS Game 2

If you haven’t already, join the Mets Fans in Chicago Facebook Group for the most up-to-date information and conversation among the local fans. A little more information about the game watches is below in the picture. Hope to see you and let’s go Mets!




Mets/Cubs – Wrigley 2015

May 15th, 2015 Posted in Mets, Mets games, Wrigley Field | 1 Comment »

Standings Flags

Panoramic View from 237

For the second season in a row, the Mets were swept by the Cubs at Wrigley Field. I was there for every game and combined with the cooler temps, it was more miserable than you could imagine. The Mets should have at least won on Wednesday and Thursday.

Without further ado, a quick summary and a lot of pictures from the series:

Monday May 11, 2015

Jacob deGrom

Jacob deGrom vs. Jon Lester. 2014 NL Rookie of the Year vs. highly paid veteran. The game was off to a rocky start when the Mets were retired in order to start the game. In the bottom of the 1st, the Cubs’ Kris Bryant and Anthony Rizzo hit back-to-back home runs to give the Cubs a 3-0 lead. Luckily the Mets got it back with back-to-back homers of their own from Lucas Duda and Wilmer Flores to cut the lead. The Mets were able to get some other runners on base, but the bats couldn’t get them home and lost 4-3.

Lucas Duda home run

Wilmer Flores home run

Other notes: This was my first game at Wrigley this season and my first chance to see the new video boards. I think they are great. Video replays on the left field video board were pretty instant and crystal clear. The information on the right field board was also great. I didn’t need to scramble and write down when a new pitcher or pinch hitter was announced. The information was always on the screen. The Mets even challenged a call last night and there were sharp graphics to show that!

Untitled Untitled

*Full set of pictures here.

Tuesday May 12, 2015

It was Noah night! The debut of Mets phenom prospect Noah Syndergaard vs. Cubs’ Jake Arrieta. Both pitchers were cruising along until Syndergaard gave up a few runs. It was the same ole story where the Mets couldn’t get any offense going and ultimately lost 6-1. Sitting behind home for the second half of the game to see him pitch was great though.

Noah Syndergaard

Noah Syndergaard

Noah Syndergaard

Noah Syndergaard

Jake Arrieta, Johnny Monell

*Full set of pictures here.

Wednesday May 13, 2015

Harvey Day! By this point, everyone was expecting a win. Matt Harvey did his part, throwing 99 pitches, 69 of them for strikes, over 7 innings. Not only was it the offense that let him down, but the bullpen too. Carlos Torres struggled and gave up the tying run. Jeurys Familia came in for the 9th and walked in the winning run. Mets lost 2-1.

Silver lining: with seats right behind home plate, it was a treat to watch Matt Harvey:

Matt Harvey

Matt Harvey

Matt Harvey

Matt Harvey, Starlin Castro


*Full set of pictures here.

Thursday May 14, 2015

The one game of the series where the Mets had a good lead, 5-1, at one point. Anthony Recker hit home runs in back-to-back at bats. Wilmer Flores had a homer of his own. Jon Niese pitched alright, but once the lead was gone, the wheels fell off and the Mets lost 6-5.

Jon Niese

Anthony Recker home run

Wilmer Flores home run

Anthony Recker home run #2

Jack Leathersich


*Full set of pictures here.

Overall, the series stunk. The Mets should have won at least two games and even a third. I can only hope the games next year are warmer and have better outcomes.

Juan Lagares Steals Second Base

May 12th, 2015 Posted in Mets, Wrigley Field | No Comments »

At Monday’s Mets/Cubs game, I just so happened to have my camera focused on Juan Lagares at first base. It paid off for me when he stole second:

Juan Lagares steals 2nd

Juan Lagares steals 2nd>

Juan Lagares steals 2nd

Juan Lagares steals 2nd

Harvey Day at Citi Field

April 24th, 2015 Posted in Citi Field, Mets, Mets games | No Comments »

Happy #HarveyDay!

I usually make at least one spring trip to NY and try to tie in a Mets game. When Nik and I planned this years spring trip a few months ago, we picked the April 19 game against the Marlins because it was the only day game they were playing during our trip. As the game approached, the pitching rotation aligned that we would see Matt Harvey.



It came out after the game ended that Harvey was a little under the weather. I guess it showed in his pitching, but luckily the offense performed so well, you didn’t notice that he was missing a little something on his pitches. The Mets exploded for seven runs in the 4th inning and held a lead the whole game. The Mets gave up a few late runs, but they held it together and picked up the 7-6 win.





We had seats in section 109, row 15 and they were great for such a sunny day. Once you got into the shade of the concourse it was pretty cold because of the wind coming through. A bonus was the cute dog parade before the game for Bark at the Park.

Bark at the Park

It was great to see the Mets sweep another series and continue rolling along. It makes me even more excited that I’ll see the team again in about 2 weeks at Wrigley. I have tickets to all four games. I think since living in Chicago, (moved here in 2007), I’ve only missed seeing the Mets once, and that was because of a conflict with Pearl Jam’s night at Lollapalooza.

Mets win. Familia with the save



**Full set of pictures is here.

Road Trip: Mets Spring Training

April 10th, 2015 Posted in Mets games, Road Trips | No Comments »

Tradition Field

Bartolo Colon warming up

Buddy Carlye and his kid

I can finally knock seeing the Mets in Port St. Lucie off my wish list as Nik and I made a trip to Spring Training last week. It was great to have live baseball in front of me. Literally. The seats we had were front row by the Mets bullpen so I was mere feet away from Bartolo Colon warming up. It was great seeing guys like Jacob deGrom, Zack Wheeler and others all hanging out by the pen being loose and relaxed.

Pitcher brain trust

Anthony Recker giving hugs

The game itself wasn’t that great for the Mets as they lost 4-3 to the Cardinals. Outcome aside, it was great exploring Tradition Field. Nik and I didn’t spend much time in our seats because it was so damn hot. We roamed around the stadium going in and out of the shade. Making our way down the first base line to right field, then out to the outfield berm and all around. I loved the easy access to walk around and it was great to be around baseball again. (Full set of pictures here.)

David being David

Bartolo Colon

View from right field

As for other games on my agenda this season: April 19 at Citi Field against the Marlins; May 11-14 against the Cubs at Wrigley Field and perhaps a game in St. Louis.

Obviously there are some high expectations for the Mets this season. Let’s just take it one game at a time and enjoy the ride.

Let’s go Mets!

The Mets/Cubs Debacle

June 10th, 2014 Posted in Cubs, Mets games | No Comments »


I love the Mets. I look forward to schedule release day every year to see when they’ll come and play the Cubs. (Playing the White Sox in 2013 was just a bonus.) No matter how good or bad the team has been before coming to town, I always plan to go. In my seven years living here, I’ve missed one Mets/Cubs game – because of a concert.

David Wright

David Wright

Last week, the Mets came to town fresh off four wins over the Phillies. It was great for the team, and one would think the Mets would have a good series against the Cubs. As Lee Corso would say, “Not so fast, my friend.” The games are already a week old, but here’s a quick recap:

Tuesday June 3

Wilmer Flores

Zack Wheeler

Zack Wheeler went 6 2/3 innings, giving up only two hits, while the Mets held onto a 1-0 lead. The game was turned over to the bullpen…and it was just the same ole story. The Mets had so many opportunities to blow open the game with countless base runners, but they couldn’t get the runners home. Josh Edgin gave up a game-tying homer to Chris Coghlan in the 8th, and then Scott Rice lost the game in the bottom of the 9th on a Nate Schierholtz walk-off single for a 2-1 final score.


View from my seat

For this game we sat in section 237. Full set of pictures from the June 3rd game can be viewed here.

Wednesday June 4

David Wright

Lucas Duda

Curtis Granderson

The second game of the series was a lot like the first. The Mets took an early lead, let the Cubs score some runs, and back and the forth the teams went until the Cubs held on for the 5-4 win. Once again, the Mets had plenty of opportunities but stranded far too many runners on base. Adding insult to injury was the weather. Tuesday was sunny and warm. Wednesday was cold and breezy, making the game even worse to sit through.

Daisuke Matsuzaka


View from my seat

For this game we sat in section 208. Full set of pictures from the June 4th game can be viewed here.

Thursday June 5

Jacob deGrom

Eric Campbell

Curtis Granderson

This was the one game of the series in which the Mets didn’t take a lead until a little later in the game. But, much like the previous two games, they couldn’t hold the lead. A highlight of the night, if there was one, was Andrew Brown’s 7th inning home run that tied the game at 4. The joy was short-lived, as Anthony Rizzo went deep the next inning, and the Cubs sealed the win with two more runs in the 8th on its way to a 7-4 final. (It should be noted that Brown made a killer throw to home to tag Luis Valbuena out. But after a challenge by the Cubs manager, the call was overturned and the run counted.)

Andrew Brown home run

Anthony Rizzo about to go deep

Fun with camera filters

For this game we sat in section 214. Full set of pictures from the June 5th game can be viewed here.

As of now, I don’t have any plans to see another Mets game this season. Not because they are playing badly, just because I don’t have an interest to see them in Milwaukee; nor do I have other plans to see them on the road. Slim chance I’ll see a game at Citi in the fall, but who knows. That’s a little ways off.

Road Trip: Las Vegas

June 4th, 2014 Posted in Road Trips | No Comments »

Panoramic view from my seat at the Las Vegas 51s game vs. Reno.

I love seeing baseball games on the road. I have seen the Mets in Minneapolis, Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, Washington DC and San Francisco. I saw the Binghamton Mets in Portland and even saw a Cubs-Rockies game when I was there for a wedding. Needless to say, when I knew I would be in Las Vegas for a wedding, I immediately kept tabs on the Las Vegas 51s schedule. (If you’re not familiar, they are the Mets current Triple-A affiliate.) It just so happened that they had a home game on the one night that I didn’t have any wedding-related events.

Cashman Field, Las Vegas, NV

Cashman Field, where the 51s play, is about a 20-minute car ride from “The Strip,” and so Nik and I rented a car to make it easy to get there and back. The stadium complex was much nicer than I expected. There was a cute team store and a variety of concession stands. Like most minor league games, it was very family friendly. We bought seats that were five rows behind the 51s dugout and had great views once the sun went down.

Getting the start was Darin Gorski, who held his own for awhile. But alas, a win was not in the cards and the Aces won 4-3.

Darin Gorski

Allan Dykstra

Omar Quintanilla

Josh Satin

Kirk Nieuwenhuis

It was nice to see guys like Allan Dykstra, Omar Quintanilla, Josh Satin, Andrew Brown and Kirk Nieuwenhuis play. All of them, except Dykstra, have been up and down with the Mets at some point. Hopefully they can keep improving and have a chance to make the big league roster full-time next season.

Wally Backman, Andrew Brown

*A ceremonial first pitch was thrown by Guns ‘N Roses member Dizzy Reed:

Dizzy Reed first pitch

** More pictures can be seen here.

My First Gary RailCats Game

September 4th, 2013 Posted in Gary Railcats | 1 Comment »




For about six years now, Nik and I have driven past the U.S. Steel Yard baseball stadium in Gary, Indiana, home to the Independent League’s SouthShore RailCats. Each time we’d say to each other that we need to see a game. It finally happened this past weekend on Labor Day. I bought a $15 Groupon deal that included two tickets and a $10 “Cat Coin” good at their concession stands. We took the The South Shore Line train from Millennium Station in downtown Chicago to the Gary Metro Center stop where it was a short walk to the stadium.

Playing the El Paso Diablos, it was the final regular season game for the RailCats, and so it was fan appreciation day. Each fan was given a team photo as they entered the stadium and many of the players were out in the entry area signing autographs and posing for pictures. I took advantage of the photo opportunity:

Collage of pictures with Railcats players

As you’ll notice in the picture above, and pictures below, several of the RailCats players have some amazing facial hair.

Starting pitcher Morgan Coombs

Pitcher Morgan Coombs

Above: The amazing facial hair of pitcher Morgan Coombs.

Pitcher Stephen Hiscock

Above: The amazing Rollie Fingers-esque mustache of pitcher Stephen Hiscock.

Back to the game. Our tickets were behind the RailCats dugout, and we decided to sit in the first row until someone asked us to move. We never had to move and we thoroughly enjoyed the game. The stadium is nice and the environment is definitely family friendly with a lot of on-field contests during the game. Unfortunately, the RailCats lost 4-1, but the team is playoff bound, and hopefully it’s not another six years before Nik and I see another game there.


Starting pitcher Morgan Coombs


Rascal, the Railcats mascot

Relief pitchers heading out to the bullpen

Nice to see the tradition of a rookie carrying the pink backpack of supplies to the bullpen lives on in the Independent Leagues.

*Full set of pictures can be found on my Flickr page.

Mets Split with Sox

July 2nd, 2013 Posted in David Wright, Mets games, U.S. Cellular Field, White Sox | No Comments »

Mets at White Sox

I’m not a recap blog, so click here for a recap of the June 25 Zack Wheeler game against the White Sox and here for the June 26 Shaun Marcum game.

Warthen, Wheeler, Buck

David Wright, Adam Dunn

That said, it was great to finally see the Mets play on the South Side. It’s the first time they’ve played in Chicago since 2002, which was before I moved here. I’ve documented before that I much prefer The Cell over Wrigley Field. It may not have the historic charm of the Friendly Confines, but it has good food and much better bathrooms.

Tuesday’s matchup gave us Zack Wheeler vs. Chris Sale. While Sale lived up to his side of the hype, with 13 strikeouts, Wheeler struggled a bit more than his first outing. Unlike some fans who are freaking out about it, this happens. The kid is a rookie and will take some time to get polished. I welcome him to the starting rotation with open arms and hope he’s with the Mets for a long time to come.

Zack Wheeler

Chris Sale

David Wright

A popup snafu was due to happen to a team other than the Mets, and on this night it did. Daniel Murphy was at bat, with David Wright at second and two outs, when Daniel Murphy hit a popup. Sox third baseman Conor Gillaspie seemed to be headed to make the play when Gordon Beckham also charged in from second base, tripped on pitcher Addison Reed’s foot and fell forward as the ball dropped to the ground, allowing Wright to score the tying run. The excitement didn’t last long, as LaTroy Hawkins blew it in the bottom of the ninth, and the Sox won 5-4.

Gillaspie, Beckham drop popup

Gillaspie, Beckham drop popup

Gillaspie, Beckham drop popup

Wednesday’s game had a much better outcome, as Shaun Marcum finally picked up his first win of the season in a 3-0 victory.

Kirk Nieuwenhuis

Tim Teufel tossing BP

We arrived early enough to catch the end of batting practice, which is always enjoyable. I made my way over to the side of the Mets dugout to find Zack Wheeler signing autographs. The guy could not have been any nicer when he signed my scorecard from the previous night’s game.

Josh Satin

Daniel Murphy

David Wright

Mets win

Zack Wheeler signed scorecard


*Full set of pictures from the June 25 game is here.

**Full set of pictures from the June 26 game is here.