What a year it has been for baseball! This postseason has been no exception. So, let me set out the scene for what went down this last week:
Wednesday, Oct. 5th
All day I was pacing. Thinking about the game that was to come between the Diamondbacks and the Rockies. It was hard to think about anything else, but I got through the day and went to finish recording the radio show in the early evening. I felt kind of guilty because as we were talking about the topics we had for the week, the game was the only thing I had on my mind. As soon as we closed up shop, I told my dad that I was going to Phoenix had the D-Backs clinched a spot in the NLDS. Whether I meant it or not, obviously I would want to have a chance to see my team in the postseason live!
The game was everything you could imagine two teams with one game to prove their worth for the next round would be! Offense, offense, and offense for both teams. I was a mess when I watched that game. If you were in my shoes, I’m sure you could imagine. Cue Archie Bradley’s 2 RBI triple and I was sure that we had the win in the bag. Take that, Josele!
Luckily, we found a way to hold on and advance, but.... that meant I had to follow through. I’ll try to keep a long story short:
Thursday, Oct. 6th
First thing’s first. Ruben and I decided that it would be worth the flight to watch our two favorite teams face off in Game 3 of the NLDS - so we booked two flights and I bought 3 tickets to the game. (The 3rd ticket was big time because we scalped the ticket for a profit. Just kidding, my brother went with us - he lives in Arizona.) So, now things were official and I took the Monday of the game off from work. Our trip would begin Saturday afternoon.
Saturday, Oct. 8th
If you are a New Mexico native, then you know just how big of a deal the “Whole Enchilada” slowpitch softball tournament is. Well, after coaching our 7th grade football game we were off to Las Cruces to compete in the tournament and the crazy fun weekend actually began.
Within 3 hours we had made it to the tournament just to be put out in the single game I played (my team had lost prior to my arrival). This made way for us to hang out with my sister attending NMSU.
That night we took on the 3 lb Burger Challenge at The Game. Luckily, we shared it as we watched the more baseball in anticipation for our next adventure.
Sunday, Oct. 8th
We had a chance to hang out and relax throughout the day. Around 2:30 PM we took our hour trip down to El Paso to catch our flight.
Okay, so now we’re at the airport (flight at 5:45 PM) and we have the smoothest route to the terminal. I recommend that if you have the opportunity to fly with carry-on luggage only, you take it. We board the plane and I get wedges between my dad and some lady. That’s right, 6’3” me stuck with my arms crossed and hardly any arm rest for a little over an hour - staying positive though because this opportunity is a special one. We land, my brother picks us up, and we go for a drink at a popular spot called Bourbon Jacks before destroying about 4 baskets of fries and a burger at Red Robin, each. Finally, SLEEP!
Monday, Oct. 9th - Game Day
The day we’d all been waiting for! We woke up, had breakfast at Roman’s apartment, then drove around looking for new gear. The first 3 places we checked we flat out of Diamondbacks apparel. We kept searching until we landed at the mall around noon to find a new shirt for about $24. (I had found one for $35, but I took it back because I’m cheap like that.) Now, I was all set for Game 3 of the NLDS!
We decided to roam downtown Phoenix for a few drinks as we watched a few other postseason games and ended up eating some below average pizza for lunch. Fun nonetheless! After a couple hours of fun we headed for Chase Field and man, she is a beaut!
We got to the field at 4:00 PM and the gates were set to open at 5:00 PM for the 7 o’clock game time. We grabbed a few free D-Backs signs, checked out the scene, and had a chance to get within 20 feet of, former World Series hero, Luis Gonzalez. I was pumped! After an awkward picture with Gonzo in the background, we found a spot across from the gates to watch the ALDS Game 3 between the Yankees and Indians.
Around 5:30, we went through security and scanned our tickets. An old man was handing out Sedona Red Diamondbacks towels so we grabbed a few and went to the highest level of the stadium. Don’t worry, I’m working to get better seats next time. We roamed around, checking out concession prices. Surprisingly enough, they were the same prices they had in the regular season! Then, we found our seats - Section 301, Row 16, Seats 8, 9, & 10.
We caught the finishing touches of the Dodgers’ batting practice and then the grounds crew crushed the field prep. Then we sat and waited for the game to start seeing more and more fans fill up the stadium and we guessed that about 20% of the fans were for Los Angeles. Not a bad ratio! The biggest plus of the night had to be the fact that we got to see Olympic legend, Michael Phelps, throw out the first pitch!
The game started, and Greinke started with a rough outing. It was definitely difficult to watch our ace (mind you - he is paid more than any of the diamondback on the field combined) struggle to throw strikes. Dodgers get on the board in the first inning and it’s a 1-0 ballgame all the way into the 5th inning. Greinke’s pitch count was monstrous and Darvish was cruising like Tom with about half as many pitches thrown.
Greinke gave up his second run as he surrendered a solo blast to Cody Bellinger and the crowd was silent. Yu Darvish had only given up a single hit until the bottom of the 5th had Daniel Delscalso’s spirit lifting solo homer and the D-Backs pulled within one run (2-1). Top of the 6th inning didn’t make things any better with another solo shot given up to Austin Barnes (3-1), the fans deflated a little because of how hard we knew it was going to be to score runs on the LA bullpen. They decide to bring in Jorge De La Rosa, who had been great for us all year. He got out the inning.
The bottom of the 6th inning was interesting because pinch hitter, Christian Walker, tried to sell a hit-by-pitch with horrible acting. It was hard to watch the replay after Torey Lovullo had challenged the foul ball. We understood that a good sell would have earned him a base, but bad acting had him looking like a fool. Two pitches later, he really is drilled, but not a minute later David Peralta grounded into a double play and our hopes were slipping through our fingers pitch-by-pitch. As soon as we saw Kenley Janson coming out of the bullpen it was time to set our hopes high for next year as he slammed the door shut and the Dodgers were well on their way to the NLCS...
A couple of other things that stood out during the game included the fact that fans go absolutely wild for Archie Bradley and the red towel swinging covered the stands. It was such a blast to attend a postseason game. I highly recommend having a quick trip to see your favorite team in any situation, especially with family. It was an experience I’ll never forget - plus, my dad was super pumped to see his team advance, not a bad consolation prize. Believe me, material things are pretty neat, but experiences are was really make the world go round!
If you would like to write for AllSportsBest.com send us a message or find us on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter!