Posted tagged ‘diamond’

Retro Blue Jays – 2002 Time Capsule

June 29, 2018

Posted by Balsamwoods.

Thanks to social media, it’s now hard to recall a time when following the Blue Jays was a lonely experience.

This random item I recently found on YouTube captures that feeling.

It’s home video of the poster’s trip to Toronto, which included in-stadium clips of – based on the footage – the May 27, 2002 match between the Blue Jays and Boston Red Sox.

The in-game experience has certainly changed at Skydome over the years. This is evident in the video when one sees the original scoreboards, fireworks after homeruns and the bright green AstroTurf. The J-Force dancers have a completely different look, not to mention Ace and Diamond.

The video is also a time capsule and reminds us how little attention was given to the team at the time.

During the late 90s and early 2000s, the Jays were very low on the totem pole of Toronto sports. The Leafs, Raptors and Rock were putting together strong playoff runs from the fancy, new Air Canada Centre.

Showing interest in the Jays was met with disdain. Free tickets or a chance to go to a game were scoffed at.

The team’s overall performance on the field didn’t help either. This was especially the case in 2002. At the time of this particular match, the Jays were 17-30 and Manager Buck Martinez was days away from being fired.

Having said that, don’t treat this video as a cruel reminder. It has some lovely aspects to it as well.

Roy Halladay was the starter that night. Though it wasn’t his best performance, Doc was in the midst of his breakout season. You’ll also see some familiar faces like Carlos Delgado, Raul Mondesi, Nomar Garciapara and Ugueth Urbina. You might even enjoy the two Leaf fans who run on the field and troll the crowd.

[Was “troll” a term used in 2002? Maybe I should’ve gone with “punk’d.”] 😝

ER

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If I Was President…

August 19, 2014

Shi Davidi’s article about Paul Beeston’s employment status provoked this tongue-and-cheek post from yours truly.

That tongue-and-cheek post got me thinking: What if – by some miraculous fortune – I was hired by Rogers to be the President of the Blue Jays? What would I do? What changes would I make?

I gave it some thought over a lunch of toast and blueberries. Ultimately, I came up with ten items my presidency would undertake.

1)  Bring back the 99-cent hot dogs. Technically, the 99-cent hot dogs still exist, except they now cost over five bucks. And since the penny was eliminated, I’d have to round up and call them dollar dogs. For added value, I would also bring back the dancing hot dog cartoon that use to be shown on Skydome’s  Jumbotron to advertise the product.

2)  Bring back BJ Birdy. I have nothing against Ace, except for his generic name. There’s just something about the former Jays mascot that the current one doesn’t have. Perhaps it’s because BJ Birdy conjures up memories of the glory years, while Ace is a reminder of several disappointing and frustrating seasons. I would still keep Ace for the Saturday Jr. Jays games. I’d even bring back Diamond and Domer. But at the end of the day, BJ Birdy would be the “ace” of the mascot staff.

3) Changes to the TV play-by-play crew. Almost every game features at least one hate-tweet directed at Buck Martinez and Pat Tabler. Buck is no Vin Scully, but he’s better as a colour commentator and has more experience sitting in that chair. Therefore, I would have a platoon of actual play-by-play broadcasters. More specifically, Matt Devlin and Jim Hughson. Devlin sounds great every time he fills in for Buck and Hughson has done play-by-play for the Jays before (he also worked alongside Buck for the TSN broadcasts of the early nineties). As for Tabler, he can be the third man in the booth or (more preferably) he could join Jamie Campbell and Gregg Zaun at Blue Jays Central. Of course, with Devlin and Hughson’s commitments to basketball and hockey, there might be a need for a third play-by-play man. My suggestion: Rob Faulds or Sam Cosentino.

4)  Bring back the Flashback Friday promotion. By far, my favourite in-game promotion. Powder blue throwbacks, a returning former player and a wicked music video to start things off. It’s a shame the Jays discontinued it.

5) More appearances from the Sunday organist. I have a fever and the only cure is organ music at the ball park. Having an organist helps create the perfect baseball atmosphere. It sure beats having a Friday night DJ at the stadium.

6) Eliminate the techno version of OK Blue Jays. They’ve been playing it for years and it has never sounded right. You just can’t beat the original arrangement.

7) Grass field, ASAP. In an interview with Mike Wilner last year, Colby Rasmus compared the field to “running up and down a basketball court.” That’s not good. Grass must be installed and it cannot wait for the Argos’ contract to expire. It’s not a simple or fast fix, but the process and research needs to start.

8)  Blogger Press Box. Okay, I’m a little bias for this one; but wouldn’t it be great if all us bloggers had our own spot to congregate at Skydome? We could use the football press box since it’s empty most of the time.

9) Change the stadium’s name back to Skydome. That just goes without saying. Also acceptable: Rogers Skydome, as suggested by a few individuals.

10) Get carte blanche from the Rogers brass. Definitely a daunting task. I would request a blank cheque and get it in writing. Then I would print the document on a giant flag and have it fly outside the stadium. That way, I won’t have to deal with all the “ownership is cheap and trying to screw the team” comments. There might be some truth to it, but unlimited bags of cash doesn’t lead to World Series titles either.

As for AA and Gibby…Sorry, I’m holding judgement until the end of the season 😉

Eric aka @TheHek

Photo: BJ Birdy Appreciation Page (http://www.geocities.ws/Athens/Atlantis/2816/bluejays/bjbirdy.html)

Photo: BJ Birdy
Appreciation Page (http://goo.gl/gjXdpa)

Episode 13 – Baseball North

September 20, 2012

The maple leaf is well represented in Major League Baseball.

Todd Devlin provides an update on Baseball Canada and shares his thoughts on who might win this year’s Tip O’Neill Award. There’s some Blue Jays talk too.

Episode 13 Direct MP3 Download

Vote Tom Cheek for the 2013 Ford C. Frick Award


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