The Rangers had their Fan Fest yesterday (January 27th). My dad and I spent the day there and I will describe what happened in this week’s blog.
9:00 am: We got in line a little before 9am, which was when they were supposed to open the gates. We ended up being in line with Shirley (The Cookie Lady), who was very nice, as always, and gave cookies to me and my dad. It was very chaotic getting in. They had a piece of paper you had to sign before you could get in but they didn’t tell you anything about it. They had no organization to it and just had people standing around with clipboards at different spots towards the front of the line. You had to figure out on your own that you had to sign the clipboard. Then you had to go into a mob of people to get to the clipboard and shove your way to the front because there was no line for getting to those people. Then you had to go into another mob to get a wristband (that you didn’t end up needing for anything) from other people standing around, near the people with clipboards. Then you had to wait in a line to get in. It took over half an hour to get into the ballpark. Because of that, we missed two Q&A sessions, including the Mark Teixeira one.
10:00 am: I went to the Newberg table and got Chris Davis’ autograph. Like usual, the Newberg table had my favorite autograph guests. Jamey and Eleanor were there and I got to talk to them a lot during the day, which was great. Then I went and checked out the booths. T.R. Sullivan of MLB.com was at one. He’s very nice and has a great blog at http://trsullivan.mlblogs.com/. Then I talked to Roger Emrich. He’s a great guy and does sports on KRLD.
11:00 am: I went back to the Newberg Table and got Nate Gold’s autograph. After that, we had lunch. I caught the very end of the John Lombardo / Scott Servais Q&A session. They said that the biggest difference between Buck Showalter and Ron Washington is that Buck paid a lot of attention to the minors while Ron focuses on the guys on the 25-man roster.
12:00 pm: I was at the broadcasters’ Q&A session. Eric Nadel said that the best move this off-season was the Brandon McCarthy trade. He said that the most disappointing one was to see Gary Matthews, Jr. go even though he agreed that it was too much money. After that I stayed for the Comedy Improv. A very nice photographer for the Rangers, Brad, leads the Improv. They did 5 different things and were very funny. I was brought up to be in Storytime, where there is a pointer who will point at a member of the Improv and he will make up part of a story. Then the pointer will point at someone else and that person will continue the story. They let me be part of it and it was really fun.
1:00 pm: I went back to the Newberg table and got Eric Hurley’s autograph. I then went back to the booths and met Mike Ogulnick, who does Rangers sports for KRLD. He was really friendly and I enjoyed meeting him.
2:00 pm: I watched part of another Improv then stayed for the Jeff Cogen Q&A session. I asked when they were going to update the bricks outside the ballpark that have all of the player information (stats and awards) from each year of the Rangers. The last year they updated it was 1997. Jeff agreed that they needed to update it and said that he would take care of it. I also learned that the Rangers and away team are going to switch batting practice times when the Rangers are at home, so the visitors will bat first and the Rangers second. They’re doing this so that more fans can watch the Rangers take batting practice.
3:00 pm: I went back to the Newberg table and got Thomas Diamond’s autograph. Then I got CJ Wilson’s autograph and he said that I could interview him sometime soon for a blog entry. And the last thing I did before we left was get Rich Hand’s and Larry Hardy’s autographs.
It was a great day as always at the Fan Fest. I particularly enjoyed the Q&A sessions, the Improvs, and talking to people like Jamey, Eleanor, Roger, and T.R. during the day.
Come back next week for an interview with CJ Wilson (if it’s done).