Sunday, July 19, 2009

RAP Improvements Continue

The base and framework for the new video screen have been erected and it looks like it will be operational in the near future. I'd be surprised if it isn't ready for the July 28-30 series versus (you guessed it) the Edmonton Capitals. As you can see from the photo below, it dwarfs the old scoreboard.

The other small change I noticed at the ballyard is that there are signs on the home run fence indicating the distances to left, centre and right field. According to the signs, it's only 317 feet down the left field line, a respectable 400 feet to straight-away centre and an above average 330 feet down the right field line. I always suspected that the left field fence was significantly closer than the right field one and the signs confirm it. Unfortunately for guys like Jamar Hill who hit most of their homers to left field, their home run totals don't seem quite as impressive as before.

The organization also added screens along the first and third base lines a few weeks ago. I normally sit in section 8 or 9, and the early-season games were a bit nerve-wracking when players swung late or had a check swing that rocketed a line drive into the stands. Kudos to the Seals organization for doing the little things to make the old ballyard seem as cozy as possible.

Seal Blubber Bits

  • Losing Isaac Hess and Austin Bibens-Dirkx to the big leagues was a big blow to the Seals' second-half chances. On Saturday night, the team took another hit when injuries to Chris VanRossum and Brian Rios occurred. VanRossum suffered a broken wrist and was seen sporting a cast on his right arm at the ballpark on Sunday. Rios was more fortunate and only suffered a sprained ankle. Sergio Pedroza moved over to VanRossum's centre field spot on Sunday and Terry Mermer started in right field. Mermer will see lots of playing time while VanRossum mends his broken wrist. The team will definitely miss Rios' fielding at the hot corner.
  • Brett Flowers continued his hot hitting on Sunday, going 4-for-5 with 2 homers and 5 RBIs. On Thursday night, he went 3-for-4 with a homer and 7 RBIs. Flowers is now third on the team in RBIs with 30.
  • Walter Young of the Edmonton Capitals made his debut with the team this past weekend at RAP. He DH'd for the first three games, but played first base on Sunday afternoon. Young, who played briefly with the Baltimore Orioles in 2005, is best known for being the heaviest player in Major League Baseball history. He's generously listed at 6' 5" and 290 pounds.
  • The Seals' next game is Friday night in Tucson.