Tonight I went up to Grand Rapids to see the Silverhawks play the West Michigan Whitecaps. Part of the reason that I wanted to go was to see Fifth Third Ballpark again. Don’t be confused. The park in Toledo that I have visited twice this season is Fifth Third Field. This one in Grand Rapids is Fifth Third Ballpark. Don’t even ask about Dayton. The other reason that I went was to meet Rick Leach. Rick was a dominant quarterback at Michigan as well as a Major League Baseball player. Rick played for the Tigers and Blue Jays for most of his career before spending one year stints with the Giants and the Rangers. I of course got a ball autographed for my collection, and I also got a couple of cards autographed. The Whitecaps are having a different Tiger at every Friday home game this season. This is a great promotion that gave me an idea for a new weekly post for this blog. More on that later.
As for the game it was the first time that I have seen the Silverhawks away from Coveleski Stadium. They looked just as bad here as they did at home. In the bottom of the first a single followed by a triple and another single plated two runs for the Whitecaps. West Michigan scored again in the second inning, and that is all that they would need. The Silverhawks scratched a run across in the 8th, but it was too late. Gustavo Nunez and Brent Wyatt had a hand in all the runs for West Michigan. The real stars of the game were the defensive players. They turned four double plays, and made some great plays on defense. The great defense kept the Hawks off of the board until the 8th. In a 3-1 game, they made all the difference. They deserved to win this game, and they did. After the game the fans were treated to the end of the Pittsburgh/Detroit hockey game. I am glad that I left before the Penguins won the Stanley Cup.
This was the 19th baseball game that I have seen this year. This makes the eighth professional park that I have been to as well (I have been to two college stadiums as well). With a couple of months left in the baseball season, this could be a great year for the junkie. I already know that I am going to see at least 3 other pro stadiums in July. Maybe another one next weekend when the Sox go to Cincinnati. The sky is the limit.