NYC to San Francisco

Two days ago, a reporter from the San Mateo Daily Journal left a comment on this blog, asking me how San Francisco compares to other host cities for the All-Star Game. I didn’t know what to say. I hadn’t even left for San Francisco at that point, and I’d never been to an All-Star Game.

Anyway, the trip to San Francisco was brutal.

I woke up at 9am with four and a half hours of sleep, raced to Newark Airport, ate the worst chicken wrap of all time, and learned that my first flight was delayed. Not a major delay. Just long enough to make me miss my connection in Detroit, where I had plenty of time to eat another sickening meal and write about it in my journal. My second flight landed in San Francisco after 7pm, and Brad met me at the airport.

Things got better from there, in part because of the jolly volunteer “All-Star greeters”–and because of the huge All-Star banners hanging all around town.

all_star_decoration.jpg

I was here. Finally. I couldn’t believe it.

I checked into my hotel, dropped off my bags, and had dinner with Brad at Lefty O’Douls. Then I met my friend Hannah and KGO_studio.jpghung out with her ’til around midnight. Then I cabbed to the studios of KGO 810 AM and did an hourlong interview until 2am with John Rothmann. Then I cabbed back to the hotel and eventually got to sleep at 3:15am–which felt like 6:15am.

I woke up early the next day (yesterday) and headed to the ballpark for the Futures Game and Celebrity Softball game. I was hoping to blog about it by now, but I couldn’t. Too much stuff happened. I got balls. I got autographs. I got threatened. I got sun-burned. It was a long/fun/crazy day, and I’ll blog about it as soon as I can. Right now, though, all I can think about is the Home Run Derby, which is taking place later today. There’s gonna be some STIFF competition in my section. You remember where I’m sitting, right? If not, check out my last entry.

35 Comments

I looked for you today! Didn’t get to see you though.. I’ll be looking for you tomorrow though.

I had a pretty baseball-exciting day as well. I have a huge chance at getting to see a couple games next month at Great American Ball Park, Angel Stadium, and PETCO Park!!! What a good month! I’ll ask for tips when your caught up with your blogging. Good luck tomorrow!!!

–Ethan

Er, Good luck TODAY!!!

Good luck at the HR Derby Zack! Try tracking down the sideline reporter for ESPN so you could get some airtime!

So what hat(s) will you be wearing? I take it you won’t jam a hat for every team in your backpack? haha

Good Luck tonight! The past Home Run Derby’s I have attended have been so ridiculously crowded that actually catching a ball is tough and not getting beat up afterward is tougher!

So Good Luck … all eyes are on you!

John

http://majorleagueballhawk.mlblogs.com

http://majorleagueballhawk.com

hey ethan, he was the guy scrambling for that triple hit off the wall by jay bruce. he almost got it too. how do i know for sure? i asked him.

ETHAN-
I spent most of the Futures game wandering around and taking pics and eating and talking to people, so I wasn’t in my seat too long…but I WAS right there when that deep drive smacked the bricks just to the side of me. Tonight and tomorrow, I’ll definitely be staying in my seat, so you can look for me with confidence.

PSU532-

Thanks. I don’t think I’ll be able to track down anyone. I heard that fans will be kept in their ticketed sections DURING BATTING PRACTICE, so my chances of moving around and finding anyone are really slim. I decided to bring four different hats, and I based that decision on which teams have the most pitchers and outfielders on the All-Star rosters…because those are the players that are likely to be shagging balls closest to me. Any guesses about which hats I’m bringing?

JOHN-

Thanks very much. I’ve already encountered some NASTY people who will be sitting right in my row during the Derby. They’ve already threatened to play dirty and to team up against me to make sure I don’t get any balls. To them, all I can say is: “San Francisco, meet New York ******’ City.”

TSWECHTENBERG-

Word.

EVERYONE-

If my obnoxious shirt doesn’t get horribly sweaty (or if I simply have good luck while wearing it today at the Derby), I might wear it again tomorrow during the All-Star Game. I’ll try to make a decision and leave a comment about it by this time tomorrow.

just make sure your cap is red, that ought to do it

Posting frm ifone in store really cool I’m write smthin important wen I get home done is really cool

y did u have to saty in your section DURING BP?

wow, that last commment was really bad. so hard to type on that thing.

bergin- r u a brewers fan, or did you buy all the gear to get autos?

My guesses at your 4 hats are: Red Sox, Tigers, Mets, and Brewers?

did you guys just see zack catch morneau’s 1st homer?

YOU’VE GOTTA BE KIDDING ME!!! FIRST HR IN THE DERBY AND YOU CATCH IT?!?!? WOW!!!

NICE CATCH ZACK!

OMG!!!!! i cannot believe that. zack, im almost speechless!!!!!

LOLLL I JUST SAW ZACK TOO!!

the loom on ur face was great. 7 seconds of air time

OMG, ZACK, AMAZING, FIRST HR MY MAN!!!!! SANFRAN HAS BEEN BERRY BERRY GOOD TO YOU!!!!!

First Bonds HR and now this. Awesome job dude, just awesome!

omg…holy $h!+ dude, i just saw you catch morneaus homer. awesome dude. you were on TV! very nice catch! thats so insane…im gonna keep watching…and let you know if i see you again…but thats so awesome. you looked suprised as **** and then you looked at the ball really quickly and then started up and down again.

hope to see you again soon…

let us know how the futures game was

AWESOME!!!!!!!!!! You were on TV for a good five seconds. They zoomed in on your face and everything! I’m so happy for you!! (But you do look like a complete idiot in that shirt!)

And you were close to Morneau’s second/third HR too! Awesome!

ZACK!!!!!

YES!!!!

NICE JOB ON THE FIRST HOMER!!!

Great job Zack! Wow! I just told my wife about you and that she should look for you and then… there you are catching a ball. Unbelievable!

Steve

http://mybrewers.mlblogs.com

FOLLOW the ZACK-O-METER on my MLBLOG … I am also Live Blogging the HR DERBY — Thank god he is wearing the Where’s Waldo shirt so we could see him!

John

http://majorleagueballhawk.mlblogs.com

Zack!

I just saw you get the 1st home run ball of the game! I knew it was you when I saw your shirt. Are you going to add the ball to your collection??

Nice job Zack!!

Chris

Dude – Nice freakin’ catch! I thought it was you and then someone else from Shea called so I had to rewind the DVR and there you were…kudos on the choice of shirt as well…

-Evan from Shea

Ok Seriously good choice of shirts Zack. I’ve seen you three or four more times, running here or there, trying to snag another ball. You almost grabbed Morneau’s gold ball and I saw you shuffling over in the event of an odd bounce from Rios’s last shot. So jealous….

yeah great choice on the shirt. i literally jumped up in the air when i saw you catch it. i said, “i know him!”

When I saw you catch it I said “Holy ****!!!! Well, it’s only fitting… really”

Congrats again.

Zack,

Congrats on catching the FIRST HR ball. That’s absolutelY AMAZING!!! And your shirt really standed out

Zack,
I’m heading to Shea on the 29th of July and its a 1:10 game. Do the players still take BP on day games.

Thanks

Great catch Zack. But who was the guy next to you that decided to throw a punch when things didn’t go his way(last Morneau HR of the first round), and more importantly, did security handle the situation?

Hey Zack-

Unbelievable. Simply amazing! I have been reading your blog for over a year now and almost did a spit take when I saw you jumping up and down with the Morneau catch. Congrats!

I figured, for my first post, I’d bring a little something to the table…

So,

Here is your catch:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=um7nEd1o_hc

and the replay:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D9M87YSRFzs

Congrats again. Can’t wait to read your write-up!

-CP

hey buddy, check your e mail. i just sent you a video clip of the catch
mike

Hey zack i told you that i would count how many times i saw you on tv if you count the ones where you look little bity 12 but if not 7 at the derby nice catch first ball WOW.hey i didnt get my bonds homerun ball but i did get my bonds ball in the bottom of the sixth inning when barry bonds and Bill Hayes got done and steve kline promised me a ball so he took that ball from Bill Hayes and tossed it up to me after a couple innings of talking with him and telling him he was my favorite player when he played for the cards he laughed and said that he would have to wait until the bullpen coach was’nt looking because he gets charged $10 a ball he only gave out three to people who were not begging for a ball so if you’re ever at a giants game next to the bullpen and he is in there dont beg and only ask once about every other inning have fun at the all star game did you see the out field grass pattren with the ball thing that is a pretty cool

EVERYONE-
Ohmygod. What a crazy day at the Home Run Derby. Thanks so much for your comments. As I headed back to my hotel from the ballpark, I was *really* looking forward to reading all the reactions. I’m too tired right now to answer everyone individually, but I hope to catch up on the whole week’s worth of comments at some point soon, so keep ‘em coming…

how was the ball hit by? did u use the glove trick?

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