Last Saturday the family got together for a day at the Cleveland Guardians. Although we are lifetime Cleveland baseball fans, this was our first Guardians game. I am trying to get used to the new name. After a lot of practice, I get the name right about 90% of the time. Spelling it, however, is another matter. I always want to put the “a” first. Gaurdians. I mean, it is pronounced “gar.” Why is the “u” the first vowel?
We set up the date with Mom and Dad. Tom and I wanted a Saturday game so that other members of the family could come. We didn’t want an evening game because it makes it too late at night when we get home. So we found the game of July 16 at 4 p.m. And it was the Jose Ramirez bobblehead giveaway, which made it even better. I contacted other family members and we ended up with 13 people who wanted to go to the game.
Getting tickets, however, was tricky. First of all, the tickets are a lot more expensive than they used to be. Second, we needed tickets in a section close to an entrance. We wanted Dad to be able to go, but he can’t walk a long way. Third, the Guardians website wouldn’t let me buy 13 tickets. I could buy eight tickets. I couldn’t buy eight and then log on again and get five more. I could only buy eight, period.
After much searching, I finally found 13 seats together in Bleacher section 181, rows L and M. I knew we would have a good view of the game from there. The bleachers are close to the entrance near the ticket office. They are also around the corner from the handicapped drop-off area. The tickets were $44 each, which I thought was a lot for bleacher seats. We could have gotten tickets in section 178, but they were $71 each and the view wouldn’t have been better.
I bought eight tickets in row L. Then I called my daughter-in-law Jackie and explained the problem. She logged in to her MLB account and ordered the other five tickets. I was thankful she was able to get them before they were gone.
Getting the tickets to everyone in the family was another interesting issue. In the past, I would have printed the tickets out and given or mailed them to the family members. The Guardians no longer accept paper tickets at the gate. You can only get e-tickets that can be scanned on your phone. And you have to pay a $4 convenience charge for that. Why do I have to pay a convenience charge when everything is done electronically and it is LESS convenient?
When it came time to send the tickets to everyone, I found out that I couldn’t get the tickets with the same app that I used to buy the tickets. I bought the tickets from the MLB app, but I had to have the MLB Ballpark app to access the tickets. Two apps for one ballgame. Sheesh! Once I got the right app, sending the tickets to the family was easy. The app was also very convenient for getting into the ballgame. I could have even ordered food at the ballgame with the app and picked it up close to our seats.
We traveled to the game in stages. Steve, Grace, and John came to our house in Columbus and we drove to Mom and Dad’s in the Prius. It was a tight fit but worth it with the gas prices. At Mom and Dad’s we all got in the minivan. All together it took three hours to get to the game and then home again, so we were especially thankful it was an afternoon game.
After all the hassle with the tickets, the game was a breeze in comparison. My dad was a trouper walking slowly but steadily to his seats. Once you get inside the gate, they have a wheelchair hosts available to help handicapped people to their seats. We didn’t need the wheelchair inside the stadium, we needed it to get to the entrance. They need an entrance where the handicapped drop-off is. We also got there early enough that five of us got bobbleheads. We shared them with the rest of the family who got there after the bobbleheads ran out, so we ended up with one per couple.
The game started out with a bang and Jose Ramirez hit home runs his first two at-bats. By the end of the second inning, the Guardians were ahead 8 to 0. It was also raining. No rain had been forecast, so some of us were not prepared. Although the rain was a nice, soaking rain (we were soaking), there wasn’t any thunder or lightning so there wasn’t a rain delay. It rained for a couple of innings, then the sun came out.
The first half of the game went slowly. The Guardians were scoring, which was fun, and it was raining, which was not fun, but it took a while. At one point I looked at the scoreboard and thought, “It has to be more than the second inning!” But the rest of the game flew by. In fact, the second half of the game went so fast we didn’t even have time to get ice cream before it was over!
Having the family together at the ballgame was a lot of fun. I am really glad we were all able to go and that Mom and Dad were with us. Singing “Take Me Out to the Ballgame” in the 7th inning was especially sweet.