Let's start at the end, because Matt Kemp is truly a beast. Just another home run for The Bison, an absolute BOMB to just right of center that had everybody immediately chanting "MVP! MVP! MVP!". Kemp was jumped by Dee Gordon before high-fiving his mom through the netting behind home plate.
I picked a damn good night to wear this:
The night started off fantastically well. I avoided paying $15 for parking and got some great exercise walking up the never-ending hill into Chavez Ravine and Dodger Stadium before meeting Tommy Davis. Davis was kind enough to sign my mini-helmet for me, which hadn't moved from the shelf on which it has been resting on since the day I got it, back in September of 2010 at Dodger Day at the L.A. County Fair.
I saw fantastic pitching from both Chad Billingsley and Stephen Strasburg, and Stras is every bit as good as advertised. Bryce Harper made his major league debut, and he was massively impressive. He displayed good speed, excellent anticipation, power with a double he laced to the base of the outfield wall, and an absolute rocket for an arm. Not only did I not think he had a chance to get Jerry Hairston, I thought it was foolish when I saw him release the ball from left. My mindset quickly changed upon seeing this (the video will soon be removed, but I imagine you can find it somewhere - also of note, a guy moons during his first at-bat).
The original main draw was the dual Don Drysdale/Maury Wills Bobblehead, which I'm stoked to have picked up. Wills threw out the first pitch with Don's two sons - but not before removing his blazer and tossing it on the back of the mound - which was an entirely awesome scene to witness. Drsydale's daughter sung a beautiful rendition of the National Anthem, and some church dude did a great job with God Bless America as well.
There was also an idiot who ran on the field in the ninth and made a beeline for Harper, pointing at him before getting tackled by a slew of security guards; an excellent Dodger Dog; a chance encounter with an old friend; and an edge-of-your-seat ending that still has me amped up, even though it's already after midnight and I should be sleeping or doing classwork.
I'm definitely keeping my ticket stub from this game.
Beast Mode never sleeps....