All the no name players left the practice fields and the fans did the same. People walked by me and left me alone, a blubbering hot mess. My mascara had run down my face. I was tore up from the floor up.
Out front Philly Billy from the Mighty XX had a booth and they were giving away free opening day tickets in a contest. As lonely as I was I didn't feel like dealing with Philly Billy. I sat out front for a bit while I waited for the A's to bring their tickets down to Will Call.
Dex's in-laws were nice enough to leave me a couple of tickets at Will Call (one for me and one for my Kev) and so when the tickets came I entered Peoria Stadium alone gripping Kev's ticket wishing I had a buddy. I saw local broadcaster Larry Himmel enter the stadium about the same time I did. I was going to say hi, but realized I didn't have much to say to him except to tell him I was sorry his house burned down in the fire. I figured I wouldn't bring that up again, so I left him alone (except for taking a sneaky spy picture).
I made my way over to Autograph Alley. I'm not interested in autographs so I stood, perched up on the bridge and watched the players come in. It was a bunch of kids giving puppy dog eyes at all the players and begging for an autograph like they were starving and asking for food.
The adults and parents berated the players for not stopping and signing. They kept saying "at least sign for the kids! We came all the way from the East Bay!" That's a no win situation for the players. Probably about a quarter of the guys actually stopped and they got stuck signing autographs forever because of the guilt trips. The only guys I really recognized were Bard and Gerut. I later heard a rumor from someone with an inside source that Gerut has a prescription for HGH and he's allowed to use it because of a medical condition. The source says Giambi has the same free pass. Must be nice.
As I was walking to my seat I saw former Channel 4 host of "Out in Left Field" Troy Johnson taking in the game. He's the one in the green shirt. I whispered meekly to myself, "will you be my buddy Troy Johnson?" I think an older gentlemen overheard me and gave me a look of disgust like "be a man! What's wrong with you?"
The game was about to start and thankfully I met up with Dex's father in law at our seats and finally I had a buddy to hang out with. Spring Training isn't so bad when you've got a buddy.