Brewers Spring Training 2014 - Day 1



Oregano's is a pizza joint that has 14 locations in Arizona and a favorite restaurant of my Aunt Linda. She took my brother James here when he was in Phoenix on business. While we were waiting I ran into Brewers pitcher Donovan Hand and I was really awkward as usual around famous people. They had shitty coleslaw and sodas bigger than my head, but the food was really good and I had a great night out to dinner with my family.

It had been a really long day with traveling and enduring a rough Brewers loss, so I just wanted to relax. I was told that they had a hot tub at their apartment complex so we had to investigate. It turns out that the hot tub was being repaired so Tyler and I went in the pool instead. It was like 9 or 10pm. It gets real cold here at night when the sun goes down so it was rough but it still felt great. I had a couple of Coors Light tall boys and I was all full of rage and sunlight, so I went to bed early. Not too damn bad for my first day out here.

The Circle K also had a Del Taco, so I consider this a dual win. Del Taco might be the 2nd best fast food joint ever (sorry, In-N-Out Burger is still #1) because you can get a taco, fries AND a burger. How cool is that? I wish that I could eat here all day, every day.

My goal was to hit the ground running at see the Brewers take on the Anaheim Angels at Tempe Diablo Stadium at 1pm. I was right on schedule so I stopped for some beer. I bought a 12 pack of tall boy Coors Light. Strange things were afoot at the Circle K.














Tempe Diablo Stadium is home to the Anaheim Angels and is only 7 miles away from the airport. So it was probably fate that the Brewers were playing there that day. My cousins Troy and Tyler would be meeting me here soon. So I wouldn't be alone.


I'm from Milwaukee. The city that invented beer. We don't take no bullshit from anyone and we know how to tailgate the right way. I was knocking back tall boy Coors Lights but I was the only one in the parking lot doing it. We weren't in Wisconsin anymore.












All Spring Training and Minor League parks are basically the same. They are the same dimensions as Major League parks but with less seating capacity. They are almost always one level and the majority of them have grass seating in the outfield. What makes the parks down in Arizona unique is the beautiful weather, clear skies and abundance of sunlight. What's not to like? This is perfect.















There are no bleachers in Spring Training ball parks (or most minor league parks that I know of) so the Sombrero doesn't really have a home. But most parks do have lawn seating, so I kind of feel welcomed. It's the next best thing. I'll allow it.

I walked past the Brewers dugout to see if I recognized any of these guys. And to no one's surprise, I did. The common fan may not know who some of these guys are, but I'm not the common fan. I have a fever, and the only prescription is Brewers baseball.














I don't know what kind of Mad Scientist had has his Evil Empire built into the hill, but there it was behind left field. I have no idea what it is at all but I kind of like it. I will live there in a heart beat. I would do anything to be able to stay down here for a while.

Back home in Milwaukee my friends were going out for drinks after work. I was sad not to join them but glad to be here. I promised to send them a picture of me drinking, and it whitewashed the background. Go home phone - you're drunk.














I went in the far right field corner to record a video for my popular blog series 25 Brewers in 25 Days (in which I preview the upcoming season). Today's video is about catcher Jonathon Lucroy, and you can watch that video by clicking on this link.


My cousins Tyler and Troy joined me at the game today. Tyler is a huge baseball fan but his favorite team is the Chicago Cubs. So we can't all be perfect. It was good to see them and hang out, as I rarely hang out with my cousins on my Dad's side of the family.















The Brewers lost 12-2. Matt Garza gave up 10 runs in the first 2 innings and the Angels cruised to victory. It was a tough game to watch but it was great to hang out in the sun with my cousins. Besides, it was just Spring Training. These games don't count.












My car was really nice and it was amazing to ride around with the windows down and the stereo up. After the brutal Wisconsin Winter I was just happy to be here. Anything else would be a bonus, which made me think this would be the best week ever.