The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

Take Me Out to the Ballgame

Posted on | June 5, 2011 | 18 Comments

Emerson, 10, Reagan, 8, and Jefferson, 12,
at Municipal Stadium after Sunday’s Hagerstown Suns game.

My wife’s boss had extra tickets to Sunday’s Hagerstown Suns game, and we took our three youngest kids to watch the Suns win 6-5 over the Greensboro Grasshoppers.

It was a big crowd — 4,592 in attendance at Municipal Stadium — because Ryan Zimmerman, third baseman for the Washington Nationals, was playing in a rehab appearance for the Sally League Class A farm club. Zimmerman, recovering from a pulled abdominal muscle, was 2-for-2 with a double, a triple, an RBI and scored a run. Suns shortstop Blake Kelso also had two hits, and catcher David Freitas drove in two runs with a first-inning double.

Greensboro starter Jheyson Manzueta was wild, and three Suns were hit by pitches, including rookie right fielder Bryce Harper — an 18-year-old first-round draft pick for the Nationals — who left the game after been struck on the ankle by one of Manzueta’s wild pitches. Harper had been batting .338 with 13 homers this season for the Suns (now 35-22 on the season). Apparently the injury was not too serious, as Harper was seen near the Suns’ clubhouse walking normally a few innings later.

The rookie phenom’s injury, however, created an opportunity for outfielder Wade Moore, who came in as a pinch runner for Harper, scored in the Suns’ four-run first inning, and later had an RBI triple in the fourth inning. The 10-hit performance by the Suns helped starting pitcher A.J. Cole get his first win of the season, and right-handed reliever Wilson Eusebio got his second save, pitching two scoreless innings to end the game. (Complete box score here. And there’s a Washington Post story about the game here.) Here are a few pictures from our family outing:

Me, Reagan and Mrs. Other McCain. Notice that I was keeping score. An old habit from my days as a sports editor. My wife and I have been married 22 years, and she still refuses to learn to keep score.

Reagan waits with her glove by the left-field fence, hoping to catch a foul ball.

Wow! She caught one! (OK, she actually didn’t. My wife posed this photo. One of the ballboys gave Reagan a foul ball, just because she’s so cute.)

Emerson chills out in the picnic area at the stadium. His rugged good looks? Yeah, you know where he gets that.

Jefferson eats ice cream in the picnic area before the game. Notice the stadium has an old-fashioned manually operated scoreboard, but a big TV screen.

The kids get autographs from catcher David Freitas after the game.

Suns pitcher Shane McCatty hands an autographed baseball back to Emerson.

Reagan poses on the sideline. She takes after her mother. But maybe there’s still time to teach her to keep score.

Anyway, so that’s how I spent my Sunday afternoon. Kind of a welcome break from a week of Weiner. If you feel the urge to hit the tip jar — hey, don’t fight the feeling!


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