Nestor at the bat: Orioles fans invade Fenway…sorta


With the advent of the internet, it becomes possible to send back information via almost instantly, which is really cool.

This is my second trip of the year to see the Orioles play on the road. My first was in Tampa a few weeks ago.

I am relegated to only getting press credentials on the road in MLB, because Peter Angelos and John Angelos have decided that I’m not a "real" media member anymore. But, at least for today, I get to do what I’ve done my whole adult life,. And with the advent of the new, I get to share the cool people I meet and the stories I find with anyone who cares to read my silly blog.

Once I got to the field, about 90 minutes ago, I got a chance to chat with Jay Gibbons, who is one of the good guys on the team. I know he said some stuff last week about playing time that ticked off some fans and media, but believe me, Gibbons’ attitude isn’t a major problem with the Orioles.

We discussed FREE THE BIRDS briefly — he said his "peace" and I said mine — and we shook hands like gentlemen. He didn’t think it was cool that we walked out in the middle of the game (and said so in the press last September), and I assured him that I took no offense to his comments and clarified my position.

I made it clear that it was not an attempt — in any way — to disparage the players, who are giving it all they’ve got. I wanted him to know that we were NOT "mocking" the players in any way. We’re trying to fix the team so guys like him don’t have to play in front of an empty stadium in the future. And I gave him an earful about the city, the economy and what the fans of Baltimore have come to expect from a sports franchise.

I’m still a Jay Gibbons fan. He was my favorite Oriole in 2001, when he first got called up after being a Rule 5 draftee from Toronto.

And, like I said, it was a really good and pleasant and dignified conversation! I felt good about interacting with him, and I told him so.

By the way, I mentioned Melvin Mora in my previous blog. He was signing autographs in front of the Orioles’ dugout during batting practice. I snapped a picture because I thought it was a nice gesture on his part, making nice with the fans who flew up from Potomac, Rockville and Baltimore.

The picture from the top of this blog is one I took en route to walking back up to the press box to write.

There were about a dozen fans on the third base side of Fenway in Orioles gear, all hanging, drinking beer, taking in the sights and sounds of BP. For several, it was their first few moments at Fenway Park, a place they’ve seen on television their whole lives and have waited and saved money to visit.

They will NOT be disappointed today, because Fenway Park is basking in the glow of all that makes baseball (and baseball HERE, specifically) great.

Tradition, families, hot dogs, beer, the revelry of the game, a brass band playing, the smell of sausage in the air, the crack of the bat — oh, and it’s about 65 degrees here today — perfect in the sun, a little chilly in the shade.

I’m going to join my family in the seats. We’re in Sect. 21, right behind home plate.

Shonda and Curt Schilling left us their tickets, so I wanna give them a public Rex Barney-like "Thank YOOOOOOuuuuuu!"

This is us taking the subway earlier! (They call it the "T" here…)

And if you’ve never been to Fenway Park, you really oughta come up and see a game.

It would immediately show you all that is missing at Oriole Park at Camden Yards under the ownership of the Angelos regime.