Monday, April 29, 2013


It was something I hadn't done in years-- attend a baseball game in Moosic.  They were called the Red Barons the last time I was here, and they were the Philadelphia Phillies AAA affiliate.  The weather was nice Wednesday morning, and the team had a 10:30 AM start against the Columbus Clippers.  It was a spur of the moment thing.  I jumped in the car and pointed it toward Moosic.

Times change.  I missed the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees era.  As you know, the RailRiders are in town, and the stadium has undergone a massive renovation.  The first thing you notice as you approach is the low profile.  The upper deck is gone.
Once you're inside, you notice those foul balls that used to land in the upper deck are now in the parking lot.

Something else is different.  Baseball is no longer enough to keep people entertained.  I get that.  A trip to this ballpark, and every other, means fans will be bombarded by a multi media blitz of ads and other assorted nonsense.  The between inning contests bordered on tedious, but at least they were short enough to avoid getting in the way of the actual baseball game.
Quill, the creepy, mangy porcupine mascot entertained the crowd, and he seemed to be a big hit with kids and adults.  The above photo was taken during pre game warm ups.  The RailRiders wore a combination of maroon, navy, gold, and white.  I'm a fan of neither the name or the logo, I will admit the uniforms looked sharp.
Champ is a hold over from the Yankees days, and that's a good thing.  Champ is still the best.  I'm fond of the furry, blue guy.  His first appearance, after the team's announcement a few years ago, was in the WNEP backyard on one of our weekend morning broadcasts.
Unlike the old stadium, you can walk around the outfield in this one, and a stroll through the outfield seemed like a popular destination Wednesday afternoon.  I didn't think it was the bast place if you want to take in the action, but it is a good spot if you want to snag a baseball.  I wondered how the lack of an upper deck affects the game.  Is it a hitter's park, or do pitchers have the advantage?  I'll have to consult the sports team on that one.  I suspect it's too early in the season for a definitive answer.
Speaking of the sports team, the station was well represented at Wednesday afternoon's game.  Sharla McBride is operating the camera.  Jim Coles is in the middle, and that's Courtney Harrison on the right.

A note of thanks before I go...

As I walked up to the box office to purchase a ticket Wednesday morning, a man approached and asked if I needed one.  I replied "yes" and was handed a freebie.  The man explained that friends and family couldn't make it to the 10:30 AM start, and he didn't want to see the ticket wasted.  I thanked him and offered to pay.  He declined.  By the way, the usher who showed me to my seat refused to take a tip.  Anyway, it was a great seat-- six rows up from the 3rd base dugout.  Bill, thank you for your generosity.

The food smelled great, but I didn't have any.  There are specials on certain days here, but be prepared.  It's not cheap.

All in all, and in spite of the sunburn, it was a really nice day.