Tagged: Andre Ethier

L.A. River Clean Up

A little late, but better late than never.

Today was the first day of the two day Dodger caravan. When I read that the first event was going to be cleaning up the LA River, my first thought was … I wonder if it’s anywhere near the section of the LA River were I live.
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Sure enough, it was only a few blocks down the river from my house …
On the other side!
I know there were a lot of people who were not happy with how this year’s caravan was set up. But I enjoyed it. I had a good time. Once the players arrived and were announced, we started cleaning. The only current players were James Loney and Andre Ethier (Ethier arrived separately as he was just arriving from the airport). The former players included Tommy Davis, Rudy Law, Kenny Landreaux, Bobby Castillo, Jimmy Campanis. This event included two managers… current manager Don Mattingly and former manager Tommy Lasorda.
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At first, they had us go into our groups. The players were divided up among the groups. After about ten or fifteen minutes, it became more of an amoeba than several different groups working. Cameras were rolling and snapping every where. It was kinda interesting to be picking up trash and then realizing there was a video camera on me.
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I liked it. The players were able to mingle and talk with fans as we all pitched in to pick up trash. As bags were filling up, fans started taking pictures with players and asking them for their autographs. It was very casual. I waited till towards the end. By then, I already filled up one bag and started a second. I found a binder (full of mud), a door mat, and a golf ball. Patrick O’Neal was there and he found two golf balls.
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At least no one found a stool!
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Though there were a few rusted shopping carts stuck here and there.
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I managed to get two of the three autographs I needed in my scrapbook. I got Loney and Mattingly, and a picture with the new Dodger skipper. He is a sweet, sweet man!
Again, overall, I really enjoyed this experience. Though I may have had an ulterior motive … maybe not ulterior. But at least I get a sense of satisfaction in helping out my community since I do live in the nearby vicinity… granted on the other side of the tracks. I definitely enjoyed this one better than I have in recent past. Though Canter’s is probably still my favorite.
Now that I’ve been up for about 28 hours… it’s time for a nap!
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I love day games … (9/1/10)

We got into the stadium, and the first players we saw were Carlos Monasterios, Chad Billingsley, and Ramon Troncoso. I have to admit, I don’t think I’ve ever seen Chad sign before a day game. So, I was surprised when I asked him if he would sign that he came over. Not only did he sign my scrapbook, but he found a spot on my team ball to sign. He asked me if I wanted him to sign on the picture, and I said yeah. It’s funny how the players have been asking, “do you want me to sign on the picture or here?” Here, being a blank space on the page. Ted Lilly signed down by the foul pole, but I didn’t want to run over there. So, I stayed behind while my friends went. It took awhile before other players came out. Several pitchers would walk by, but say they had to go to the bullpen. Jeff Weaver came out to play catch with Belisario. He was right in front of us. I asked him to sign but he said something and went to play catch.
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I have been trying for over a year to get Weaver to sign my scrapbook from 2009. It’s the article when he and his brother faced each other last year. Today, I brought my 2010 book that’s a Work in Progress. I figured I’d try to get a few of the players while they were still with the team. I’ve gotten a lot of players in my 2009 book already. Fortunately, there’s a great picture from the LA Times from when Jeff Weaver pitched to Jered Weaver when the Angels played at Dodger Stadium. I was surprised that when I asked Jeff to sign, he actually came over to sign!
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And I also finally got a picture with him! I don’t remember who I got next, but I’ll go with Kuo. He was playing catch with Kenley Jansen, who I also asked to come sign but he said he had to go. So, Kuo came and I had a magazine I needed him to sign for my friend’s boyfriend. It’s the Dodger Magazine with the four All Stars. I got Ethier earlier in the week and Angelikna got Broxton at the signing. So, we just needed Kuo. There’s no way we’d ever get Furcal unless we catch him down in the Minors doing a Rehab assignment. So, as Kuo is signing our things, he had two baseballs in his glove. My friend asks Kuo for one of his balls and Kuo gave him a look and my friend said, “not that kind!” It was hilarious. I wish I had captured it on camera.
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Ryan Theriot came out with Stan Conte (the trainer). Guess he was testing to see how his knee felt after getting knocked over in Monday’s game. We’ve been trying to get Theriot to sign and he finally came over today. He almost didn’t sign for me. When I asked him for a quick picture, he said he didn’t have time.
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Sure. He didn’t have time. I don’t mind if they say no. I rather have them just straight out tell me they don’t want to or can’t. Casey Blake tells fans all the time he won’t take pictures. Andre was telling fans the same thing last year. If they say no, they say no. No big deal. Anyway, I’m letting go and moving on.

The players started coming out to warm up. Jamey Carroll came over to sign once he finished getting ready. Since I had my book, I thought I might as well ask him. These ladies wanted a picture with him. Not sure if they remembered to ask him, because he started to walk away. Since they had their back to him, getting ready for the picture, I spoke up for them and asked if he had time for a quick picture. He put his hand on one and was trying to position himself between the two. The other lady didn’t see what he was doing and she was blocking Jamey. It worked out and they got their picture. He signed my book. He did the same thing Chad did, and asked me where did I want him to sign. I let him choose. There was plenty of white space for him to sign on the page if he wanted to, which is where he signed.

When Andre came out to warm up, I went over with my friend’s bobblehead to get that signed. I haven’t asked Andre for an autograph for myself yet this year… at the game. It gets too crazy to go over there consistently. And I don’t want to go all the time. I think I’ve gone over there like twice this year, and both times were to get autographs for friends. As soon as I got my friend’s bobblehead signed, I got out of dodger so other people could get their things signed. I even heard one person behind me say, “get out of the way so we can get something signed” or something like that. Fortunately, I was able to get out of there. Sometimes it’s not possible!

Frank Kramer from the Frosty, Heidi, and Frank show on KABC was supposed to be up at the Loge Terrace. By the time I finished down the in field level, I was hungry and didn’t feel like going up to the Loge Terrace. So I went to get food! I’ll try to get that post up tomorrow! This post turned out a lot longer than I expected.

Pepsi All Star Bottle

My mom asked me to go to Vons to pick up a few things for her. I don’t like going to the one on Alvarado, so my two choices were in Glendale or Eagle Rock. I decided to go to the one in Eagle Rock and go to Target while I was there. As soon as I walked in, the display caught my eye. Sorry, I didn’t take a picture of the display. But here’s a picture of what I bought.
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Yup. It’s a Pepsi Bottle… with 6 players on it.
The players include…
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Albert Pujols, Cardinals
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Our very own MLB Pepsi Clutch Performer of the year….
Andre Ethier!!!

Who are the other four? Guess you’ll have to scope out your nearest Vons and find out for yourself. Or wait for me to post the other four pictures.

Bobbleheads and Autographs

Last night I got my 10th Dodger bobblehead. My collection now consists of Russell Martin, Takaishi Saito, Brad Penny, Takaishi Saito, Joe Torre, Casey Blake, Manny Ramirez 1, Matt Kemp, Manny Ramirez 2, and Andre Ethier. However, my favorite bobblehead is the one I got off Ebay.
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Yup, sure it is. Randy Wolf.
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Last night being Andre Ethier Bobblehead night, Andre did something I do not recall seeing any player ever do. Then again, I guess being on the DL he had time. He spent about 30-45 minutes signing autographs at the Kiddie Korral. No joke. They rotated the people in and out of the Korral about four or five times. He signed everything from baseballs to caps to bobbleheads. He even put the drama of last year’s photo day behind him and posed for pictures with several fans.
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Word must have got out fast. Because the line got LONG. I called Dodger Talk to mentioned this and the call screener asked me if I got Andre’s autograph. I said no. He asked me why not? Didn’t I want it? I said the line was too long. It was ridiculously long! Maybe if I had gotten in line at 5:45, I could have gotten it. Oh well.
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Here’s the mess left behind by people who were taking their bobbleheads out of the boxes while they were in the kiddie Korral. Someone even lost the bat to the bobblehead.

Man. Every player on the DL should spend time signing autographs. Just one player per game. Come on. How awesome would that be? Yesterday Andre, tomorrow Raffy?

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If you’re friends with Jon SooHoo on facebook, then you’ve seen this picture from his vantage view on the other side of the plate.
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Here’s Blake DeWitt thinking, man that was close! James Loney has been putting the wheels in motion. He stole his 6th base of the season last night. He also tagged up and scored on a sac fly that I think most fans weren’t sure if the ball was deep enough.
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Xavier Paul putting the ball in play.
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Matt Kemp caught stealing second base.
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Xavier Paul watching the ball bounce away as he lays down a perfect sac bunt.
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I think Xavier Paul forgot about the celebratory air bump. He started running in, then turned and looked at Matty. He changed his course and headed to center field instead of towards home.

Dodger Caravan – Day One

Let me just say … from the moment I got up, it was one string of bad luck after another. Quick story – accidentally deleted all my Dodger photos from 9/20 – 10/16 (five games, two autograph signings), went to get gas and ended up waiting over 15 minutes for my change, and by the end of the day, I kept hoping for things to get better.

Nina and I got to ESPN Zone a little before nine. There was no one there yet. A few people arrived right after we did. We started on one side of the ESPN Zone, but then found out the line was actually going to be on the other side. So they moved us over. There weren’t any signs anywhere, so we didn’t really know that it was supposed to start on that side.

Fast forward to right before the event began … they had two tables and two wristbands. But they weren’t telling us who was on what table. All they told us was, there was a cancellation and a surprise guest. We already knew who the surprise guest was. Thank you, Twitter. They weren’t even going to tell us anything except “It’s luck of the draw” on whose table you got. They handed everyone in my group (just the three of us) a red wristband. They were giving every other group. We went in and got seated. They assured us that when it was time for autographs that they would keep the same order. Guess what? Surprise, surprise. They didn’t. On the red table, they had Al Downing, Tommy Lasorda (the special surprise guest), and Tommy Davis. On the yellow table, they had Andre Ethier, Ken Landreaux, Bobby Castillo, and Rudy Law. After lots of cajoling, I manage to swap bracelets with David’s wife (he was in line behind us).

Before the players showed up, Josh Rawitch walked by. He stopped to say hi and chat with us. He asked us what time we got there and I told him nine. He said, wow. He had heard people were already there by 10, but he didn’t believe it. I told him, if Wolfie was still on the team and would be at the event, I would show up at three in the morning! He said I’d have to go to Milwaukee for that. I mentioned that the Dodgers will be in Milwaukee right after Randy’s birthday. He noticed my scrapbook and commented on it. I told him I should have him sign it, right next to the other Josh, since they were always competing with each other during the Think Cure auction.

When it was time to start the autograph session, they took the row of tables in the middle first. Apparently, showing up at 9 AM and being the first people there really didn’t give us much of an advantage. You’ll see why later on. When it was our row of booths turn to go, we found out that we got the table we didn’t want. Nina had photos with Bobby and Ken that she wanted signed. Afterward, we realized I should’ve gotten the photos from her since I switched lines. Nina and Cat actually got ahead of me, so I managed to get a picture of Tommy signing her baseball for her. He took a spoonful of soup, signed her ball, placed the ball on the table, and then rolled it to her!

It was my turn to get my things signed. Andre was up first. With the help of others, we selected the photo from the paper when Andre “reacts after his bases-loaded walk in the eighth inning brings home the decisive run” against the Phillies in Game 2 of the NLCS. I asked him if he wouldn’t mind adding the Silver Slugger on there. I had to think about it, cause I almost said “gold” but then I was like, no, wrong precious metal. So, he wrote “2009 Silver Slugger” and then he paused and added “+” and kept going. After he signed his name, he said “I added that.” “That” being, he added “MLB Clutch Performer of the Year”. How sweet was that! Since he wrote all that, I was holding up the line. .
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At first I felt bad about it. But afterward, I didn’t feel so bad
anymore. I noticed people were taking photos with him, so I asked him
if I could get a quick one. I apologized for holding up the line. I have 3 other photos with Andre, one in 2007, two in 2008. This one was definitely the BEST of the four I have. Sadly, I didn’t have one with him in 2009. So I missed a year. LOL I think the only person who I have a photo with EVERY year is Steve Lyons. Last year, the only opportunity I really had at getting a photo with him was either the Caravan or Photo Day. And you all know what happened at Photo Day. If you don’t, long story short, Andre didn’t stop to take a photo with anyone (at least not that I’ve heard or seen so far). At last year’s caravan, I suppose I could’ve tried, but I didn’t think about it. At least last year, I got a fist bump from him!

2010-02-02 011.JPGHere’s Andre signing my scrapbook. After Andre, it was Ken Landreaux, Bobby Castillo, and Rudy Law. I asked Bobby if he had any french fries yet? Last year at Canter’s, he came by our table and saw our food sitting there. He said he was so hungry because they hadn’t fed them yet. We offered him some of our fries. He took some … and kept coming back for more! When I came to Rudy, I pulled out a baseball card that I had found in my collection. He saw the inside cover when I pulled it out and he commented that he already signed the book. I told him, yeah, he signed it at least year’s event when it was only this (two fingers) big. He asked me how did the book get so big? I told him it does it by itself as I add more articles to it. He told me thanks for coming and I told him, anytime.

After I got my things signed, I went back to our table. We hung around and mingled. I told David and his wife thanks for swapping with me. After people paid for their checks and got their autographs, the screening room cleared out. About half an hour into the event, Tommy Lasorda left and they combined the two tables into one long table so it didn’t matter what color wristband you had! Man, too bad we weren’t further back in line. I already have Tommy’s autograph and so did Cat. We wanted to see our friends Bobby and Ken (and of course Andre). Like I said earlier, apparently being the first people to show up at 9 didn’t really give us much of an advantage. I got to talk to Jon SooHoo (the official photographer of the Dodgers –
and my fellow John Marshall High School alum) and Josh Rawitch again. I told him I was serious about having him in my book, since I have the other Josh. He made a comment about he’s not a player, so he doesn’t have a number to put by his name or even KABC like Josh did, so under his name, he wrote “PR Guy”. It’s great that Josh took his time to talk to us.

2010-02-02 016.JPG Thanks Josh! Hope we weren’t a thorn in your side.

Mr. Walk Off Does it again!!! (8/6/09

I knew today’s game was going to be a good one. First off, this was the first game all week that I didn’t go to alone. I was going with Nina, Jon and Roxie, and their daughters Julia and Natalie.
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Randy Wolf became one of Julia and Natalie’s favorite players after he signed a softball for me that reads “Happy B-Day Natalie! Randy Wolf”. Ever since then, Julia said he’s one of his favorites. Natalie’s still little enough that she doesn’t remember who all the players are. Nina and I were running a little late and got to the gate about ten till five. We walked to the gate and then down the street a little to find them. Hopped in the car and waited for the gate to open. We walked in and went down to the field level to see if we could get the girls any baseballs. No luck. As cute as they are, how did they not get a baseball??? They were wearing Wolf shirts and visors I had made for them. (Oh, yeah. I forgot my Wolf hat in the car. Didn’t realize it till we got into the stadium).
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Several people (including Ernie – my wonderful usher, and Ken Levine) asked me how my lip was. (In case you didn’t know, I got hit by a baseball yesterday). Batting practice went by quickly. When the Dodgers left the field, Jeff Weaver came up to a kid and gave him a bat. I was talking to Cari and Kristin when a ball bounced off the foul pole and a guy standing two seats away from Nina caught it. I’m quite relieved it did. I did not want to get hit again and not get the ball. Very possibly could’ve happened.

The grounds crew came out to paint the lines. I asked one of the guys which guy drove the tractor. He told me the regular guy wasn’t here today. He asked me why I wanted to know. I told him what happened yesterday. He was like, “really? sorry!” He said they’ve been on the tractor guy about doing stuff like that and being careful. He made one of his crew members go get me  ball from the pen. He said he couldn’t wait to give the guy a hard time. They’ve been on his case about it because they didn’t want something like what happened to me to happen. It was fun talking to him. He said he was going to text him and tell him what happened, that I was mad and going to tell the Dodger’s Front office (which I wasn’t! Mad or going to tell). He looked like he was going to have some fun with the guy. I told him, I wasn’t mad. Just wanted to know who to look out for. (Plus, it didn’t help that the guy I was talking to is REALLY good looking. Man, they employ too many good looking guys at Dodger Stadium).
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Here’s a picture of him from the Angels’ game. It’s just his back, but you get the idea.
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After Cat came back, we went up to our seats. The sun hadn’t set yet, so we had the sun in our eyes for the start of the game. Wolfie gave up four runs in the seven innings he pitched. Does that qualify as a quality start? Not sure how many of them were earned. I know he caught the Kershaw bug and walked in one run. But you know what? Wolfie even got a hit and his first career stolen base!!! Which I missed because I got up to get some napkins. That is why you never get up when a Dodger is batting.
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I did happen to get a beautiful picture of the moon while I was up. My friends left after the seventh inning stretch, so it was just Nina and me. The guy in front of me kept standing up and blocking my view. Since we had four extra seats now, I moved over. There was moment in the ninth inning when Andre chased a foul ball that landed in the stands. I saw him stand at the wall for a long moment. Turned out, the ball hit a kid in the face. Is there anyone out there who wants to ask that kid, were you paying attention? Because I was asked a lot of times when I got hit if I was paying attention. Of course, his was a million times worse because he was on the receiving end of a batted ball. Oh, and this wasn’t some little kid either. But if i had to guess, I’d say somewhere between eight and ten.
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Andre must’ve taken the kid getting hit to heart. Even though in the post-game show, he said he hit the home run for Lucy for her birthday … I like to think it was also for the kid who got hit by the foul ball. With Andre up to bat as the possible winning run… I told Nina, “watch. Mr. Walk Off right here.” BAM! Sure enough. Walk-off homer to win the game.
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Umpire watching to make sure Andre touches home plate before he gets mobbed and thrown to the ground and piled on.

Nina and I made our way down to the third baseline club. Ken saw me come in and he said hi. I showed him the Dodger magazine with my picture in it, which he was gracious enough to sign. Before the post-game show started, I went to the bathroom. Didn’t see the puddle of water on the floor that someone was cleaning up. Let me tell you something I learned in college. Puddles of water and flip flops don’t mix. Whoosh! Down I went. Thankfully, the only thing that got hurt was my pride. Which, after being burned with a marshmellow that I was roasting and getting hit by a ball, and slipping on seat earlier today… my pride already had some major dents in it. So slipping on a wet floor wasn’t going to do that much damage. That was just the kind of clutzy week I’ve been having. It’s kinda funny how many of the KABC employees now recognize me and know me for my Wolf hat. One of the guys jokingly kicked me out because I forgot it today. And look what happened. Randy got his first no decision since he changed his jersey number.
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Steve Lyons came in just as Dodger Talk was going under way. A bunch of us yelled out to him. I wanted to go over and get another photo with him. I was thinking, do I have anything for him to sign. Wouldn’t you know it? Today, as I was getting ready for the game… I took his 1989 White Sox baseball card out of the case where I have an autographed photo of him and me and put it in my baseball card case. So, I went over to the bar where he was. He was talking to someone else (a former baseball player who I didn’t catch the name of). I got his attention (forgot if I tapped him on the shoulder or called his name) and he said, “hey Linda, how are you doing?” and gave me a hug! I was first of all surprised he remembered my name (not sure if we were ever formally introduced, so he must have gotten my name some other way) and even more surprised that he gave me a hug. I told him Diane (a mutual friend of ours, she went to high school with him) said hello. He asked if she came to the game and I said no, she went to the Hollywood Bowl. He asked who was playing and I said I didn’t know. But I told him she was coming to the game with me tomorrow. Then I asked him to sign the baseball card. I think even he was surprised I had one. Everyone around me was surprised. A lot of people were like, “she has a REAL baseball card of HIM?” Mind you, it is a 1989 card… 20 years old! Well, maybe not the card itself. I certainly didn’t have it for that long. After that, I had to wait as my two sharpies (black and silver) got borrowed by other fans who wanted Steve’s autograph and the other guy who was there. I asked someone who that was, and he said it was player from the 1988 World Series team. I couldn’t catch the name. Before anyone jumps all over me, remember, I have only been going to Dodger games since 9-2-2006 and don’t know too many players from before then. A lot of fans were just getting either their ticket stubs signed or a hat.

One of the KABC employees (Aris or however you spell his name) saw me and asked me if I saw the latest Dodger magazine. I was in it. Of course, by then I had seen it. Then there was Jeffrey who was amazed how prepared I was (with all the sharpies and the baseball card). And I even showed him my picture of the Manny Ramirez grand slam. He said I have skill. Or something like that. The one earlier who teased me about the Wolf hat saw me coming up to Josh and asked me, “are you leaving? You can’t leave yet!” I was just getting Josh to sign the magazine since Ken already signed it. Actually, we did leave after that. I was worried about the gates closing before we could get out (since we parked outside of the Stadium). Funny thing was, the gates were still open when we left. And the Dodger Talk show ended just as we got into the car. Over all, a good way to bounce back from the night before.

I hate Macy’s signings

I knew about a month ago that Andre Ethier and Matt Kemp were going to be at the Macy’s in Northridge for an autograph signing. And from past experiences, I know you had to spend X amount of money in X department to get a Macy’s baseball signed. What I didn’t know was how strictly Macy’s enforced said rules. I showed up around 10:30 and Macy’s was packed. There were two lines, VIP (those who made a purchase) and those who didn’t. I was not going to make a purchase, but I didn’t really want an autograph Macy’s ball or picture. I didn’t want an autograph really. I just wanted a photo. I just wanted to see Andre Ethier and Clayton Kershaw. Oh yeah. They changed Matt Kemp out with Kershaw. And must have forgot to tell whoever was advertising the event because they had signs that still said Kemp. Long story short, they told us only one person can go up to the table at a time. That person must have the Macy’s ball and a receipt. No personal items allowed. You are given a big Macy’s bag to put all your personal items in so that when you approach the table, all your have is the ball. You want to know how strictly enforced this rule was? Not sure if this was the outcome of the rule … but as we were getting closer to the front, a little boy in tears was brought to the DJ table. Poor thing was probably between 6 and 8 years old. He got separated from his mother. I can totally see the Macy’s people separating a child from the parent because of the “one person only” rule. When it was Hannah’s turn to get her ball sign, I couldn’t even go up with her to take her picture. They practically pushed us out of the store. I didn’t get one picture of them. And so I was trying to meet up with Hannah again. There was a security guard yelling at people to move, that they were not allowed to stand in the walkway in front of Macy’s, the entrance to the mall. He was yelling practically every five minutes. This will probably be the last Macy’s event I will ever attend. And there was nothing announced at Dodger Stadium or on their website about the Macy’s rules about the signings. Poorly run in my opinion. But that’s because I’m still seeing red. I knew it was going to be a mad house because Andre Ethier was going to be there. But I didn’t care about seeing Andre as much as I wanted to see Clayton. There were a bunch of people who were disappointed that Matt Kemp wasn’t going to be there. One guy blamed last night’s loss on Kershaw. Three runs is nothing when our team averages 5 runs a game. Then again, that’s why it’s called an average. Because we can score 10 runs one day and zero the next. Kershaw didn’t single handedly blow last night’s game. He must have forgot the other eight players in the lineup who weren’t able to beat Cole Hamels. Then again, it was Cole Hamels.