Yes, Jeter. Of course. It was his night, and deservedly so. Even I, whose mother hates Derek Jeter, cheered for him. It was only the second time I've ever done so (the other being when I visited the original Yankee Stadium and pretended to be a Bomber fan for exactly one game). And tonight it felt weird and wrong and right and inevitable and necessary and splendid all at the same time.
Yes, Jeter. Of course.
But when I remember the 2014 All-Star game, here's the image that will probably always mean the most to me:
Now, I'll admit that this looks like a picture which could have been taken under a variety of different circumstances on any number of nights during this season. But that's only because I've removed the context. Let me rewind and zoom out.
Moments before I took that picture, I took this one, which shows the context in all its glory:
That's what I'll remember. That's the memory I'll cherish. Our boys. Doing it on the Big Stage. Right here at home. In that beautiful ballpark. Making it look easy. Saying, in effect, "Hey, we hope you like our city and our ballpark, but we've got some real players here, too. We play real baseball here."
When Perkins and Suzuki stepped onto the field, I was standing next to an usher who was simply bursting with pride. With each pitch, she grabbed my arm and gushed. Her smile was broad and genuine, like that of someone seeing something for the first time, though she was clearly past retirement age.
Her smile was contagious, but it didn't matter. Everybody wearing a TC logo was smiling already.
At least for this night, let the win-loss record be damned. This was a Twins Win moment not to be forgotten. True ballpark magic.
There were times, in the past week, when I started to get the feeling that the Convention Center would be a very empty place this weekend. Simply put, it seemed like everyone wanted to give away their Fanfest tickets.
On September 10, 2008, the Twins called the media (including yours truly) to the roof of Target Center to announce their pipe dream of starshine at their nearby, gradually-materializing new home.
It was a very cheery event, with tons of back-slapping and gleams in the eyes of politicians and other notables. There were hot dogs and Cracker Jack, bats and balls festooned with prototype All-Star logos, and lots of posing after the requisite speech-making. In the near distance cranes soared and silently twirled, and orange safety fencing adorned construction edges which would one day be actual places.
It is rainy in the Twins Cities today. The sky is as grey as it gets, and the chances of actual sunshine are around zero percent. There is more cold, and more snow, in the forecast.
My yard is still partially covered with snow, the top of which now sports a crust thick enough that my kids can walk across it without leaving footprints or, thankfully, getting their socks and shoes wet. The remaining cover is thickest out in the middle of the yard, about where home plate generally gets placed, right in front of the garden bed that my mom will fill with hostas in a few weeks. Those plants will be mined over and over all summer long for balls which got by someone's bat, but my mom doesn't seem to care. She's a fan.
Reports in the media have been generally favorable toward this year's TwinsFest reboot. I didn't get to go, but here are some highlights as reported by BPMers who did.
First, from CSG Mike:
The crowds were not bad on Saturday afternoon from 1-3pm, considering it was "sold out." I think they probably limited it to the right number of tickets. I would compare it to a full game scenario in the LC. Make sense? Overall the spaces seemed rather disjointed. Unlike previous TF where it was all held in one giant space... They used the Suite level, LC, and service level (-2)...
"You talk about the magic, the aura, but what really makes a stadium is the fans. Concrete doesn't talk back to you. Chairs don't talk back to you. It's the people who are there, day in, day out, that makes the place magic."
– Bernie Williams
Explore the Site
Here are 50 images chosen randomly from the 3042 found on this site. Click the image to be taken to the original post. A new list is created every 10 minutes.
This will be a great sight on game nights.
Working on the main concourse right about directly behind the plate.
Here's an idea of what these Loge Boxes are all about. That guy is a waiter with no fans to serve. They seemed to have one server for about every four boxes.
This area will supposedly show the Twins chronology. Will it stretch back to 1901?
The limestone now wraps around onto the HERC side.
Viewed from another angle, you can see that the bullpens now sit beneath the upper deck outfield seating.
Stairs down to Seventh Street now have the start of railings
The alumni band sounded great.
Skywalk over Seventh
20 minutes to get from our seat to the street. Miss this place? Nah.
Gate 3 "Killebrew"
The old flour Gold Medal Flour Mill, located next to the new Guthrie theater (Source: RP)
Here's another look at the Oliva gate.
Serious home dugout work in progress.
Fun with section counting!
The brick has been tinted where the circulation ramp meets the admin building.
The original Candlestick Park
Detail showing clubhouse and home dugout (click to see the entire drawing)
Steel meets concrete, with the last rays of sun visible through the suite and concourse openings at left.
The rendering which excited a fan base! (Inset is an enlargement of the pictured neon sculpture.)
The steel cage expands.
This is why I get it, even if I don't like it.
Click to enlarge.
The Northstar station.
Here is where the signature art (original Twins logo) will be placed.
Bronze glove delivered (awaiting installation) with Met flag pole horizontal behind the gate
End of the line.
For reference, here's that spot on the model.
Just up the foul line, it looks like the base of the wall in foul territory on the right side.
Note that, even though the scoreboard appears strategically placed, it's the outfield stands which block any potential view of the field from this roof.
Ballpark magic: Infield materializes (click to enlarge)
Look at all those flag poles! But wouldn't the one from Met Stadium look great just inside the gates in the middle of that entrance plaza?