Thursday, August 12, 2010
Braves and bad bug
First comes the good part about a three-day vacation last week.
Good friend Don Brooks and I had been trying to work out some dates to see the Atlanta Braves play. I had hoped to go since day one of the 2010 campaign, because it’s manager Bobby Cox’s last season. He will be a Hall of Famer – no doubt.
We had considered other home games and even a weekend trip to Cincinnati.
Those did not work out. But Don got tickets for games Wednesday and Thursday nights of last week at Turner Field versus the New York Mets and the San Francisco Giants, respectively.
My son, Andy, joined us for the road trip prior to his starting back to school this week.
Once we arrived at our downtown hotel Wednesday afternoon, we made the short walk to the CNN Center for some shopping at the Braves Clubhouse Store. We just had to have some new clothing for the game.
Andy picked a cap. Don and I went with shirts.
Mine turned out to be good luck for catcher Brian McCann – not that the most valuable player of this year’s all-star game needs any luck.
I purchased one of the “older-look” Braves’ T-shirts with McCann’s name and number on the back.
That night the catcher drove in three runs with a homer and two doubles to lead Atlanta to an 8-3 win over the Mets.
Our seats were good ones in left field.
After McCann got his first couple of hits, Andy, Don and Don’s friend, Brian, who joined us for the game, all looked at me and said, “It’s the shirt. It’s the shirt.” After his third hit, there was simply no doubt.
It was a great game.
On the MARTA (Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority) ride following the game, Don sat by a man getting a lot of looks. He was dressed as a Brave. Come to find out, he had been to more than 1,000 consecutive Atlanta home games.
We looked for him the next night in his right field seat on the first row, and there he was. His streak continued.
Our seats were much better the next night. We were 22 rows from the Braves’ dugout with a wonderful pitching matchup – Jair Jurrjens for the Braves versus Tim Lincecum of the Giants. Lincecum has won two straight Cy Young Awards.
Alex Gonzales hit a two-run homer in the second inning and then Eric Hinske hit a solo shot in the sixth as Atlanta won 3-2.
When we left town, the Braves maintained a narrow, two-game lead in the National League East over the Philadelphia Phillies.
I’m hoping for the playoffs, a pennant and maybe even a World Series title in Cox’s last season. But if not, I’m OK with it – after getting to see a couple of wins in August. I’ve got the memories.
Now the bad part of the brief vacation.
I picked up a bug.
I did not feel well Wednesday night late. I was a bit better Thursday but unable to eat. Then Friday, for the trip home, I got worse.
After arrival back in Holly Springs about 1 p.m., I went straight to bed – where I stayed pretty much all weekend.
Some said food poisoning. Some said stomach virus. Most, like myself, were just guessing.
I know this – it was awful.
Thank goodness I’m bouncing back, slowly.
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