April 2, 2007. The fly-over was spectacular, as usual, as was the great big American Flag, the 10 fireworks rockets, the thousands of balloons, the streamers, the "Opening Day 2007" paintings on the field.
The weather was perfect with a high of 71 and the perfect combination of sun and clouds, though it did get a little windy toward the end of the game. Perhaps Mother Nature getting impatient with another frustrating Rockies loss?
It was great to see Denver's Mayor and Colorado's Governor throw out the first pitch with three other gentlemen whom I've already forgotten.
The Chipotle burrito for which we waited in a long line on the way to the game was excellent, of course, and so were the peanuts we bought in front of the stadium. Ditto the licorice (black and cherry) we bought at Soopers.
The seats were great, and the new stadium enhancements were spiffy.
In fact, about the only thing that wasn't much good were the two teams playing on the field.
Led by Garret Atkins, who could have been charged with four errors if not for the generous homer official scorer, the Rockies showed uniform ineptness in the field, the mound, and at the plate. The new leadoff guy, Taveras, started out promisingly, showing plate discipline and getting a walk, followed by a stolen base, which led to wild cheering by the hopeful crowd, led by the guy in front of me screaming "50 more! You're going to see 50 more, just like that!". And the Rockies scored 2 runs to take the lead in the ballgame.
After that, Taveras, better known as Willy, typified the Colorado nine as he lapsed into overanxious lunging at balls outside the strike zone, resulting in four consecutive strikeouts. Even so, they took a 6-5 lead on Baker's home run, and may have won the game if they straightened up and flew right.
But it was too much to ask. Their new middle relief stud, LaTroy Hawkins gave up 3 quick runs to the D'backs with some terrible pitching, demonstrating why every other team in the league passed on him.
And so it goes, it seems, for the Rockies.
The day wasn't without its bright and hopeful spots however. Rookies Troy Tulowitzki and Chris Iannetta combined to smoothly pick off an Arizona runner at second base, with Tulo deftly blocking the base path, preventing the runner from reaching the bag as he reached for the throw that was slightly off line. These guys played better than the veterans.