Drew Pomeranz’s Balk

I woke up and watched CBS This Morning. The chef who visited the show was Ben Ford, Harrison Ford’s son. Ben Ford’s signature recipes include fresh bone-in pork leg roast with crackling, pan-fried gigante beans with mustard greens and bacon breadcrumb, green garlic couscous with preserved lemon and fennel, roasted savoy cabbage with thyme, garlic and parmesan, and cherry hand pies with lemon verbena custard. I used my computer to buy a ticket for Outside Lands, and then I bought some groceries from Trader Joe’s. The radio station website I looked at had two American Top 40 programs for this weekend. The Top 10 songs on April 1, 1972 were “The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face,” “Rockin’ Robin,” “Jungle Fever,” “Without You,” “I Gotcha,” “The Lion Sleeps Tonight,” “Mother and Child Reunion,” “Puppy Love,” “Heart of Gold,” and “A Horse with No Name.” On April 3, 1976, the Top 10 songs were “Golden Years,” “Money Honey,” “December 1963 (Oh What a Night),” “Dream On,” “Right Back Where We Started From,” “Sweet Thing,” “Let Your Love Flow,” “Lonely Night (Angel Face),” “Dream Weaver,” and “Disco Lady.” I ate a breakfast burrito, and then I took one of my forms to have it notarized. One of the city workers out in the street recognized me and asked me if I was going to the baseball game. I took BART out to the stadium. I used the season ticket holders’ line to get into the stadium, and I browsed through the team store. I was interested in buying one of the jackets but decided to hold off at least until my next payday. I took a seat in the shade as the A’s batting practice ended. I waited until after the Giants finished their batting practice to take my seat. Drew Pomeranz was the starting pitcher for the A’s, while Tim Hudson pitched for the Giants. The big new scoreboard was made to look like the old scoreboard, at least until they revealed everything on Opening Night. The first three innings took forever to play, and I actually fell asleep during Buster Posey’s first time at bat. The Giants scored two runs in the top of the fourth inning. With one out, Posey drew a walk. With two outs, the Giants got a single, and then a double that eluded Brett Lawrie’s grasp and scored one run. The second run came in through a balk, which was so annoying. Pomeranz would then get four consecutive outs to get through the rest of his five innings for the day. Meanwhile, on offense, the A’s would get a runner to second base in both the first and second innings, but both times with two outs, and so ended up not scoring. Ike Davis doubled to start the bottom of the fourth inning, but he didn’t score. A key was Lawrie not advancing the runner with no outs. Barry Zito took the mound in the top of the sixth inning, and the fans cheered him because it looked like the last time he would pitch in the Coliseum. He had an easy inning with a 1-3 ground ball, a strikeout, and a 3-1 ground ball. The A’s finally scored a run in the bottom of the six inning with two singles and a sacrifice fly from Lawrie. Rollie Fingers won the Big Head race, edging Rickey Henderson. Sean Doolittle’s younger brother Ryan pitched the top of the seventh inning and allowed a walk with one out. He got his three outs with fly balls to the outfield. In the bottom of the seventh inning, the A’s got a runner to second base through an error and a stolen base, but the score remained 2-1. Seth Frankenhoff pitched the top of the eighth inning and looked pretty good, getting three strikeouts. The A’s did nothing in the bottom of the inning. Kevin Whelan pitched the top of the ninth inning. He allowed a single with one out, but he kept the score at 2-1. During the break in the inning, they showed the video clip of John Belushi rallying the troops in “Animal House,” and then they showed shots of the crowd. We got a nude moment, as one young woman decided to expose her breasts for the camera. It was one of the highlights of the afternoon, but the security personnel escorted her out of the stadium. She was wearing yellow, and I had noticed her earlier in the day. I didn’t see that a little nudity could hurt the kids too much, but I did wonder about her unusual behavior. In the bottom of the ninth inning, the A’s got their first two batters on base through a walk and a single, but then the Giants countered with a pitching change, which resulted in the next three A’s striking out to end the game. Again, it was frustrating that they didn’t advance the runners with no outs. The A’s came close to getting a walk-off home run, but the ball went to the left of left field foul pole. It was Billy Burns who made the last out of the game, which began at 1:09 and ended at 4:15. The attendance of 29,553 was pretty good for a spring training game. I hung around the box office to buy a ticket for Thursday’s game. With the increase in my net worth, I could afford to get better seats this year. I boarded a crowded BART train and visited the library on my way home. I borrowed two DVDs. I browsed through the record store and bought a copy of the remastered edition of John Lennon’s “Walls and Bridges,” and also the Criterion Collection Blu-ray edition of Charlie Chaplin’s “Modern Times.” I went out to Safeway to buy some more food, some fruit, yogurt, Triscuits, and yogurt. I fell asleep during the Star Trek episode and awoke to see the ending of “The Ghost and Mr. Chicken.” I kept thinking about my brother, his last days, and the money he left me. I wondered what our cousins were thinking. The sky was threatening rain during the night. Some of the people who died on April 5 include Douglas MacArthur (1964), Howard Hughes (1976), Kurt Cobain (1994), Allen Ginsberg (1997), Saul Bellow (2005), and Charlton Heston (2008). Today is a birthday for Agnetha Faltskog (65), Jane Asher (69), and Colin Powell (78).

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