The Militant has been blogging for five years now, and though he writes strictly on a volunteer basis, once in a while, he'll get a well-deserved perk from all the hard militant work he's done for the people of Los Angeles over the years.
Such as the one he got recently from none other than the Los Angeles Dodgers, who offered The Militant and a few other bloggers, as part of their Dodgers Digital Series, a FREE chance to watch Monday night's game vs. the Arizona Diamondbacks from one of them fancy-schmancy luxury suites, and also get an exclusive tour of The Stadium before the game!
The Militant was even offered a free preferred parking pass. Yes, of course, The Militant prefers to either bike or take transit to The Stadium. But once in a while he can spoil himself, can he? Besides, he has not driven his car to a Dodger game in three seasons.
The group converged in the Club Level, which houses not only the luxury suites but the offices of the organization (Note: The Militant will not reveal whether he was masked or unmasked, or even partly-masked during the course of the evening's events. He can only say that special precautions have been taken to protect his identity, and details regarding this subject will not be discussed any further...mmmkay?).
The group met with team historian Mark Langill, who told us some fun Dodger facts, like how the stadium's ban on video cameras was lifted in 1995 all because of pitcher Hideo Nomo (Apparently the Japanese fans who attended his games disregarded the no video camera rule, and the organization just gave up on it because it no longer became feasible to enforce).
The group went through the halls of the club level, which resembled a Dodger museum of sorts, with all sorts of photos, paintings, uniforms, shoes, balls and bats adorning the walls behind individual glass cases. Langill mentioned that there would be a Dodger museum built in the not-too-far-off future.
|The closest thing to a Dodgers museum - for the moment!|
|The entrance to the Dodgers' clubhouse. That's Preston Mattingly, Donnie's son and Dodgers farm club player on the right through the doorway.|
Then one of the players approached us...
|Y'all know who this dude is.|
|New owners Mark Walter (L) and Stan Kasten (R). That's Don Newcombe in the hat to the right.|
|Only the Loney, only the Loney can play.|
|It was also Los Angeles Galaxy night, and members of the MLS Championship team (the players whose last names aren't "Donovan," "Beckham" or "Keane") were there with the MLS cup to meet Kemp, Ethier and Hanley Ramirez.|
|Dig that dugout. Before it's littered with sunflower seeds and paper cups.|
From the field we went back up to the Club Level and got a peek at the press box. We got to stand eight feet away from a legend.
|Caution: Legend at Work.|
It was time to start the game, so the group was led to its luxury suite. It had a sweet view of the dugout and the field in general. The room had video screens, a fridge, some couches, a counter with stools, and for those who wanted to be on the balcony, we sat on Aeron office chairs. Yes, how very un-baseball, since Aeron chairs remind The Militant of sitting in a cubicle. But The Militant would totally love his job if his hypothetical cubicle had a view like that.
|How suite it is!|
|In soccer, a "pitch" is the field. But the Galaxy players throw out the first one anyway.|
|This Magic moment.|
|Hanleywood's premiere on the Big Screen.|
|The Militant sees you, Hanley, on your first home at-bat as a Dodger. Then he grounded out.|
Most suites are catered, but unfortunately ours wasn't. D'oh. Guess there had to be a trade-off somewhere. The Militant had to go down to Loge Level for a grilled Dodger Dog!
Speaking of food, if you ever sit in the luxury suites, do not miss the infamous Dessert Cart! It's the stuff of legend, The Militant tells ya! The carrot cake is one of the most popular selections -- Though a slice will set you back $10. Yow!
|The infamous club level Dessert Cart!!!!|
|Not a bad view from here.|
The Dodgers went on to lose to the Snakes 7-2. Sucks of course (Hanley Ramirez -- The Militant sees you slackin' off!), but it was an EPIC evening otherwise! The Militant would like to thank the Dodgers for inviting him and giving him and 10 other bloggers an unforgettable evening!
Now start winning again, sheesh!
Here's some video highlights from Monday's pre-game!