The last day in Bradenton

I’ve been back in cool, rainy Chapel Hill for almost 24 hours, but I’ve still got stuff from Bradenton to share. Let’s start with some pictures from yesterday’s Pirates/Astros’ game. Most of my recap of the game can be found in this post, though there may be stuff I’m forgetting that will show up here. 

In the car between Fort Myers and Bradenton, I saw that the Eastern League Championship ring presentation for last year’s Altoona players would be before the game. My uncle wondered whether Matt Walbeck would be invited back. He was not. I hope they at least mail him a ring. Here are your 2010 Eastern League Champion Atloona Curve. Rudy Owens is the big guy in the middle with the neatly combed hair, and I’m pretty sure Bryan Morris is right behind his right shoulder, though I’m not positive. You can click to enlarge. 
Altoona Curve champsI like this shot of the National Anthem for a bunch of reasons; it’s got Pedro and Walker (hidden behind Pedro) and ‘Cutch and Tabata all in it, Ronny Cedeno looks kind of like an alien with his giant sunglasses, and GARRETT JONES IS ALMOST AS TALL AS THE PIRATE PARROT. I mean, holy crap. Also, Matt Diaz and Lyle Overbay are there. Well, I’m pretty sure that’s Overbay behind Diaz. 
National anthemIt’s a little blurry, but tell me Ray Searage doesn’t look a little bit like Stone Cold Steve Austin. Stone Cold Ray Searage. I like it.
Stone Cold Ray Searage  Let yo’ freak flag fly, Brian Burres. 
Brian Burres MulletHere’s Ryan Doumit with his arm cocked and ready to throw. I’ll take, “Things We Didn’t See During the Game” for $600, Alex. 
Ryan Doumit throwingEvery time someone made a bad/brainless play in the field, Luis Silverio was waiting at the top of the dugout for a chat. He and Corey Wimberly chat particularly often. Also, Brian Burres looks like someone kicked his puppy. 
Luis Silverio and coI’d been trying to get a good shot of Andrew McCutchen at the plate all week when I held down the shutter and managed to catch the follow through on his homer off of JA Happ. Mission finally accomplished. No wonder they put him in the Swingman commercial this year. 
Andrew McCutchen homer follow through Safe or out?
Neil Walker Lyle Overbay double playUmps called safe, but it was really close. It was another nice turn by Walker. His range may be debateable, but he really does turn a nice double play. 
Brace yourself for this one; it’s Ryan Doumit lacing a right-handed base hit. He had two (!) yesterday. Ryan Doumit right handed hitI mentioned Hunter Pence’s massive homer yesterday. The arrow is approximately where it landed in the tree that sits behind McKechnie. Note Jose Tabata, the height of the fence, and keep in mind that that part of the tree sits probably 10-20 feet back from the fence. Holy crap. 
Hunter Pence homer with arrowThis is really a pretty bad picture of Michael Crotta (I’m not sure what my camera was focused on, but it wasn’t Crotta and it wasn’t Pedro), but I’m including it to emphasize just how awkward Crotta looks on the mound. This is not his motion midway through the first step, it’s the way he sets up on the mound. 
Michael Crotta from the stretch The awkwardness does not cease there. 
Michael Crotta herky jerkyI’m pretty sure Steve Pearce ended up with a hit here.Steve Pearce mid-swingAnd here’s Chris Resop, ready to take the NL by storm as this year’s Evan Meek Memorial Surprising Set Up Man of 2011. 
Chris Resop deliveryThat’s about it for the most interesting stuff from yesterday. I do have more pictures, which I’m going to try and put up over the weekend. 

Pat Lackey

About Pat Lackey

In 2005, I started a WHYGAVS instead of working on organic chemistry homework. Many years later, I've written about baseball and the Pirates for a number of sites all across the internet, but WHYGAVS is still my home. I still haven't finished that O-Chem homework, though.