2009 Cactus League

camelbackranch08 After a week in the Sunshine State watching the Grapefruit League, a weekend in Chicago to play some APBA, it was time to travel to the desert to enjoy some Cactus League action. Met up with DonS & Tom at the airport and it was off to the ballpark.

First stop was Scottsdale for a game between the Angels & the Giants. Sitting behind us was a tattooed couple & their son Dylan, they live on 100 acres, 2 hours north of SF, what nice people, really enjoyed meeting them. The Angels won the game thanks in part to SF reliever Luis Perdomo, who walked three, gave up one hit, committed two errors, in 1/3 innings of work. Brandon Wood looked overmatched, Macier Izturis had trouble hitting the ball past the pitcher, and Nick Adenhart had trouble pitching out of the stretch for the Halos. For SF, Emmanuel Burriss had to leave the game after getting plunked by a pitch, right after I said, he was injury prone, Justin Miller threw the ball well in his two scoreless innings, and Waldis Joaquin was lights out striking out three in 1 1/3 innings.

St. Patty’s Day it was time to go to Phoenix to see the A’s host the split squad Diamondbacks. Highly touted Max Scherzer barely broke a sweat, as he was pulled after only 2/3 of an inning, three hits, one walk, one error, five runs, only one earned, it’s tough to get by with only a fastball. Sean Gallagher looked sharp for Oakland against minor leaguers. I enjoyed seeing Aaron Cunningham go yard for Oakland, he’s a real hustler, reminds me of Lenny Dykstra. 11-3 A’s. Celebrated St. Patty’s Day at the Library a bar near ASU, lotsa green shots.

Wednesday it was time to check out the Ballpark at Camelback Ranch as the White Sox hosted the Angels. DonS wanted me to bet him a shaved head on the outcome, not much point in that, as his melon was already polished. The Ballpark was unbelievable! Thirteen practice fields for the LA Dodgers & the ChiSox, Connie’s Pizza, place holds 13,000 fans, and they even have a stirfry noodle dish. For LAA Dustin Moseley worked five shutout innings and Chone Figgins & Gary Matthews, Jr. hit homers. Chris Getz hit the ball sharply, Octavio Dotel struckout three in his perfect inning, and Mike MacDougal showed why he’s so overpaid, three hits & one run in his one scary inning. The Halos won this one, 4-1. Went to my favorite pizza place Pizzeria Bianco with Joe after the game, waited three hours, better than I remembered, it’s all good.

The last game of our trip was back where it all started in Scottsdale. DonS’ brother Kevin, his wife Dawn, Rob T, and his wife Vicki joined us for tailgating before the game. John Danks worked five scoreless innings for the Pale Hose, Carlos Quentin & Paul Konerko went deep, and Aaron Poreda punched his minor league ticket, spitting it out, five runs over 1 1/3 innings. Jeremy Affeldt worked out of a self induced bases loaded jam for the save, he started the game on Monday for SF, so it all came around in a great big circle. Sox lost 6-4. After the game we took a trip over to the Salty Senorita for some Mexican food, Mexican food, and some Margaritas. Can’t think of a better way to bid Arizona adios.

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