Baseball, rock and roll and Draft day..

April 29, 2007 | Nestor Aparicio

So, I’m sitting at The Port right now waiting for the draft
to begin and I thought I’d clean out my folder full of crazy stuff from this
week.

First, I’ve been to three Orioles games this week: Sunday,
Monday and Thursday at Camden Yards.

I must say that as much as I’ve pretty much hated the Red
Sox all of my life — but not nearly in that Yankee-sorta way — they and their
fans sure make nights at Oriole Park more fun, even in dramatic defeat. Just
seeing in living, breathing color what 15,000 Red Sox fans looks like and sound
like, is really kinda amazing.

They love their team. Peter Angelos has killed that sort of
“blind faith” love for the Orioles. If you EVER doubt what Free The
Birds is all about, just go to an Oriole game when the Red Sox are in town.
You’ll see just how sad this situation has become when the Red Sox fans shout
down the few Orioles fans in our own ballpark.

I want that passion that these drunk Red Sox fans have for
their team. Today, sitting inside on a beautiful day watching a goofy NFL Draft
and hanging on EVERY pick — that’s what makes the Ravens and the league fun.

I don’t have that for baseball anymore. But I DO want it
back!

Thursday night was a VERY memorable game and lots of fun,
even though the Orioles took it on the chin with the Wily Mo Pena grand slam in
the 8th inning.

I went with my wife and Peter King from Sports Illustrated,
who might be one of the biggest baseball fans I’ve ever had the privilege to
sit with at a game. Strategy, discussion, stories, friendship, conviviality,
laughter — that’s what I always remember about my best nights at a baseball
game. We were joined in the late innings by WNST VIP Thom Mattson, and my pals
Agent Orange and Hockey Meg.

I’ve come to realize that it’s not even the game that matters.
It’s who you GO to the game with and the company you keep that makes a
memorable event memorable. I can honestly say that I’ll never forget where I
was or who I was sitting with when Pena launched that bomb toward North Avenue.

I’ll spare you the stories of the Red Sox fans (believe me,
I live with one, so it’s painful enough), but we really did have fun at the
game.

Here’s the evidence:
IMG_9036.JPG

This was Thursday night, a fun night at the Yard.

On Friday night, the WNST.net staff went a little country and
a little rock and roll, as Casey Willett and Ray Bachman and friends joined us
at the First Mariner Arena to see Lynyrd Skynyrd and .38 Special downtown.

I’ve known the guys in .38 Special from my days back in the
1980′s as a music critic and they’re just great Southern guys. The bass player,
Larry Junstrom, is a huge sports fan and a Jacksonville Jags fan.

We actually didn’t get a chance to say more than a brief
hello, but we did take some pics with the guys from Lynyrd Skynyrd. Here is one of us with Johnny Van Zant!

IMG_9038.JPG

So, today I’m at The Port with Spencer Folau. He’s sitting
next to me right now eating wings and crab pretzels. We’re having fun in
Fallston watching Roger Goodell call out JaMarcus Russell and Calvin Johnson as
the first two picks for Oakland and Detroit.

We’ll check in later…

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