Hello Friends and Family,

Link to this year's index by clicking here.

Chase Field, Part 2

Looking out the windows of the press box, I was able to take in the view that baseball writers, photographers and announcers get to enjoy every game. Hey over in left field is Friday's, the playground and batting cage that I mentioned last week.

Below is the Diamondbacks' dugout — our next destination.

The tour does not include the Diamondbacks' locker room because many of the players live in the area year-round and come to the stadium for workouts in the players' gym. However, we did enter an alternate locker room used for other events — where we were shown a video of the actual team locker room which is supposedly the best in baseball. In fact, Walt said that he talked to one player from the Dodgers who said that the visitor's locker room here is nicer than the home locker room in LA.

At this same level is the player's batting cage (allowed a quick glance) and the player's gym (no see). Then we walked through a door to encounter a tire fastened to the wall. The explanation was that the Diamondbacks' batting coach had it mounted there for a quick few swings by the players to strengthen their wrists.

Continuing along this corridor all of sudden we popped out into the Diamondbacks' dugout. So glad this was not off limits. You could almost smell the testosterone and sweat — almost hear the bravado and swearing.

This was way cool to be in the actual dugout. The only other time I have visited a professional dugout was when I was a teenager playing Little League baseball — and our team was invited to Fort Lauderdale Municipal Stadium to play one inning between games of a minor league double-header.

And here is the view of the field from the dugout. It must really get the blood racing in a young player coming to "The Show" for the first time.

Also from this vantage point I could see home plate covered with a tarp. I asked Walt what was under the tarp and he said it was seven buckets to raise the center so that the irrigation would easily run off. Makes sense I guess.

Looking back up above home plate is the press box — where we just came from.

Right next to the dugout is a special area available for rent during games where up to 12 fans will be really close to the action. In fact, it is so close to the players that there is a sign from Major League Baseball hung on the gate telling the fans that they cannot talk to the players during the game.

Stepping outside that area we stare up at the regular seating. Chase Field originated a type of seat that has now been copied in some of the other new stadiums. Each seat is turned slightly to point to second base. That way you don't have to turn your neck as far to see the action between pitcher and batter. I presume this prevents many trips to the chiropractor.

A few days prior to my tour, I attended the next-to-last baseball game of the Diamondbacks' season. I did not take my big camera but decided to experiment with my iPhone with the new panoramic capture capability (it is quite cool by the way). This is the view from our seats during batting practice prior to the game. Click here to see a larger version.

The weather was quite nice outside so they decided to open the roof for the game. Here you can see it partially open.

Then fully open as the players are ready to take the field. Incidentally, the Diamondbacks won the game with a two-out three-run walk-off home run in the ninth inning. Ironically, I attended two games this year and both ended in the exact same way. I think the team should give me free box seats — it is obvious that they need a bit of much-needed luck. Click here to see the larger version.


Life is good.

B. David

P. S., All photos and text © B. David Cathell Photography, Inc. — www.bdavidcathell.com