I headed to a Pawsox matinee game against the Syracuse Chiefs.
Last year, Sean and I got our first Triple-A lineup card at a Pawsox game on this very date. This year, I was flying solo without Sean.
I got to the game early, and was able to ask Syracuse manager Billy Gardner Jr. if I could get his lineup card after the game. He said yes.
Fast forward about three hours. The Chiefs had gotten a great start out of Nats pitcher Joe Ross, who started the season at AAA as the Nats didn’t need a 5th starter. But the Syracuse offense was almost non-existent, and the score was 1-1 heading to the bottom of the 9th.
Of course, the Chiefs lost. A throwing errors allowed Pawtucket’s first batter to get all the way the second, and a bloop two-out single gave the Pawsox the win.
I had been rooting for Syracuse 1) because I am a Nats fan, and 2) even though Gardner had said he’d give me the lineup card, I knew I had a better chance of that happening if the Chiefs won.
So the walk-off loss was bad news.
McCoy Stadium is unique in that the dugouts and playing field are about eight feet below the lowest row of stands. So in the picture below, you have to be a couple sections away from the dugouts in order to see into them. If you are by the dugouts, you cannot see into them.
When the game ended, I immediately headed to right above where the lineup card was and asked for it a few times. No response. It’s easy to be ignored when players/coaches don’t have to look at you.
I then headed down a couple sections to see if the lineup card was still up, and it wasn’t. That was that.
I headed over to the Pawsox dugout, and there lineup card was also gone by that time, too.
I had thought about just trying to get the lineup cards from the home plate umpire if the Chiefs lost on a walk-off, but there’s no guarantee they would have given them and even if they did, they’re not as nice as the dugout version. I could have also tried for the Pawsox lineup card, but we had done that last year and the manager apparently kept it.
I think I made the right call, it just didn’t work out.
I did manage to get a few baseballs that flew out of the stadium. And it was a good game, so it was still a good day.