The Mudhens let season ticket holder in an hour before the gates officially opened for autographs. At first I was a little worried about the event. They set up a second gate and allowed people who weren’t in the first line to queue up there. But, when the time came they opened the first gate for 2, or 3 minutes before the second so it was both quick to get in and fair for those who waited a bit longer. The players were a little slow to leave the club house so people who lined up at tables in right field eventually had to give up and move to left field first. There was plenty of time to visit every table though, so it did not prevent people from getting autographs from any player they wanted.
Every player was available except for the starting pitcher, Turner. My children got all 23 players. I had picked up a dozen baseballs at K Mart this morning for each of us to use as they saw fit. I have Oliver’s signature on one ball. Crosby, Ciriaco, Strieby, Bootcheck, Wilk and Weber are on another. Worth, Dlugach, Diaz, Holaday, Ortega, Hoffman, Henry, Frazier, Santos, Eldred, Patterson, Downs, Berry, Young, Waite and Brown are on a third. I gave my Ni signed ball to my daughter who did not get a late-arriving Ni’s signature when she visited his table.
We were able to leave and go eat and re-enter using the bracelets provided for the event.
As for the game itself, well we were there, so the Mudhens lost. Turner did great through five innings. In the sixth he allowed 5 hits and a walk. This gave the Chiefs a 4-2 lead. The Mudhens would catch them in the bottom of the 6th, but Syracuse kept scoring and won 8-5.
Skelton, who the Tigers traded away after he was selected in the Rule 5 draft had a strange line for his first few plate appearances. He had 3 walks and was hit by a pitch. Young hit a long home run in the 5th to give the Mudhens a 2-0 lead in what at that point appeared to be a pitcher’s duel. Danny Worth had 3 hits in his first 3 at bats.
We also stayed for the fireworks. It is a much shorter show than Detroit as you’d expect. They do have some nice effects though that cover much of the sky above Monroe Street.
With the liberal ticket exchange policy and the special events like pre-sale on the Tigers-Mudhens game and autograph day we cannot complain about the entertainment value the Mudhens provide their season ticket holders. The only thing that would stop our renewal is if we find the drive is too much as the summer goes along. Of course if the team won once every few times we went that would help, too.