By Josh (9 Inning Know It All):
Saturday night marked the end of my third season volunteering with the Salem-Keizer Volcanoes, the short-season Single A affiliate of the San Fransisco Giants. The conclusion of the season means a few things for me. First is that I suddenly have a lot of time in the evenings that I’m not sure what to do with (but I’m sure my wife has some ideas), and second that I once again have nine months without being able to watch baseball in person unless I find the time and money to drive to Seattle.
I know that I’m not the only person who kind of feels that let down of no longer having baseball to watch. Fans, staff and host families all feel a little different this week as “normal” suddenly changes in a drastic way. No longer do fans set their schedules around the home and away schedules of their team. Team staff members now go to work with out the constant flow of players, vendors and fans walking through the stadium. For host families it means that the newest member of their family is now returning their home or making their way to Arizona for instructionals. Suddenly what once was a busy and non-stop summer as become quiet and slow.
The Volcanoes didn’t make the playoffs this season, and even though I would have enjoyed watching my first Northwest League playoff games, this season was still a great success for me. So I just want to list some of my favorite memories from the 2012 Volcanoes season.
Top 10 Favorite Moments of the 2012 Season
10. Listening to “Radio” Rob and his Rob-isms. Easily one of the funniest and enjoyable baseball radiomen I’ve ever heard.
9. Getting to meet both the Volcanoes players and many of their families. Sometimes fans, including myself, forget that these are just young men who still need their families support at times and being there to see it and share photos with the families is great.
8. Catching a photo of Joe Rapp’s first professional home run. I’ve been able to catch a few home run swings but getting a first career home run is amazing.
7. Hanging out in the press box and down near the Lava Lodge. Norm, Trevino, Hauser, Mig, and all the Volcanoes staff are always fun. It’s the reason I keep coming back each year.
6. Meeting Mike Zunino. Not only was he the most talented player I’ve ever seen in the Northwest League but he was a really cool guy. Stopping to take photos and talk with fans.
5. Throwing out the first pitch on father’s day. It was the first time I ever through out a first pitch and I enjoyed it. Plus I threw a strike.
4. Buying garlic fries for the Vancouver Canadians bullpen. It is funny watching guys in their 20’s act like little kids hiding their food so they don’t get in trouble.
3. Participating in the Oregon League of Awesome Fantasy Football live draft. (Some may ask how this relates to the Volcanoes season? All the team owners either worked for the Volcanoes or were interns with the team. Trust me it counts.)
2. Being able to interview Josh Parr and Adam McConnell. These two guys are amazing young men and I wish them all the best in their futures. Oh and good luck to Josh Parr in the Northwest League playoffs that start tonight.
1. Being able to take my daughter to her first Volcanoes game (fourth baseball game overall). In total she went to 13 Volcanoes games and 19 games total this season.
Even though the season is over that doesn’t mean that there isn’t anything to talk about, so remember to check back here regularly as I will be breaking down off season moves, laying out what an Arizona Fall League Trip could look like this year and anything else about baseball that I feel like talking about. Thank you to everyone who made the 2012 season such a great success.
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