Siberian Baseball

Monday, March 31, 2008

Ernie Banks has a big day

Like a few hundred other fans without the good sense to stay out of the rain, I was at Wrigley Field this morning with my cup of coffee to stand in the cold, misting rain to be there the day that Ernie Banks was rewarded for his years with the Cubs with a statue at the corner of Clark and Addison.

There was the statue, followed by a media platform with a people pen behind that for the fans to stand and cheer. Those fans hoping to actually see or hear the speeches honoring Banks should have just stayed in the bar at 10 a.m.

I had a very nice view of the back of the platform and local media personality ass. I can only imagine how awful the view would have been if I wasn't at the front near the railing.

Still, it was fun to see the TV folks being babies and stomping their feet when told they needed to walk around the crowd to get to the media pen (a distance of 50-60 feet and certainly easier than jumping the wet railing in the rain). The biggest baby of the day was Jim Rose from ABC who couldn't believe he was being asked to walk around, despite showing up late.

The audio was spotty, but we caught glimpses of the retired players through gaps between legs and the highlight had to be the glimpses we caught of Hank Aaron.

The running joke from the cheap seats was that they could just keep announcing people and we wouldn't know the difference until we got home and saw the news to learn that the corpse of Babe Ruth wasn't really dug up for the occasion.

I also learned this morning that Banks was technically the first black manager in the big leagues when he filled in for Whitey Lockman who was booted from a game against San Diego. It's always nice to know that your morning wasn't a total waste, regardless of crappy weather.

I made it home in time for the pregame ceremony and first pitch, which featured Mr. Cub, Aaron, Fergie Jenkins, Billy Williams and Jesse Jackson. Yeah, I'm still confused, too.

In any event, the HD for WGN looks great and should look even better in three months when the field isn't covered in fog. The photo gallery from this morning can be found here.

(Image taken for Siberian Baseball)

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