By HOWARD BERGER
CLEVELAND (May 3) — It was quite a sporting concoction on Saturday: The Kentucky Derby in Louisville; Pacquiao–Mayweather in Las Vegas; American League Cy Young Award winner Corey Kluber staring down the Toronto Blue Jays here in Cleveland and (drumroll, please) the 48th anniversary of the night Toronto Maple Leafs last won the Stanley Cup.
What more could one ask?
Oh yeah… for perfect spring weather. Which we had in abundance on the south shore of Lake Erie. Not that Cleveland baseball fans noticed. An underwhelming throng of 18,008 trickled into Progressive Field for the third of four weekend games between the Indians and Blue Jays. It looked (and sounded) as if 18,006 had come down from Toronto. And, there was plenty to celebrate for visiting fans, as the Jays erupted for six runs in the sixth inning and blasted Kluber and the Indians, 11–4.
Courtesy of Jerry Howarth, me and Shane again had field/roaming passes. I went to the ballpark with my son and my trusty NIKON:
BRONZE STATUE OUTSIDE PROGRESSIVE FIELD OF EX–INDIANS SLUGGER JIM THOME, WHO BELTED 612 HOME RUNS IN A HALL–OF–FAME–WORTHY CAREER BETWEEN 1991 AND 2012.
THIS LOOKS LIKE A DRAWING FOR A POSTCARD BUT IT’S ACTUALLY A PHOTO OF PROGRESSIVE FIELD FROM OUR HOTEL–ROOM WINDOW.
CLEVELAND INDIANS TAKE BATTING PRACTICE ON SATURDAY.
TOP–LEFT: BLUE JAYS RADIO BROADCASTER JOE SIDDALL (LEFT) JOINED BARRY DAVIS OF SPORTSNET FOR A PRE–GAME CHAT. TOP–RIGHT: SHANE ENJOYED WATCHING B–P FROM IN FRONT OF THE VISITORS’ DUGOUT BUT HIS CHOICE OF OUTERWEAR INVITED DERISION.
COREY KLUBER OF THE INDIANS THREW THE GAME’S FIRST PITCH TO TORONTO ROOKIE DEVON TRAVIS IN PERFECT WEATHER JUST AFTER 4:10 P.M. EDT.
KLUBER WAS HARDLY IN CY YOUNG FORM AS THE BLUE JAYS SMACKED HIM AROUND FOR FIVE RUNS (FOUR EARNED) IN 5.0 INNINGS WORK. HE IS NOW 0–4 EARLY IN THE 2015 MAJOR LEAGUE SEASON WITH A 4.62 EARNED–RUN–AVERAGE.
IN NATURAL LIGHT, EVEN THE SHUTTER–SPEED OF MY TRUSTY NIKON CAN FREEZE RAPIDLY–MOVING OBJECTS — SUCH AS THE BALL ARRIVING IN THE GLOVE OF INDIANS CATCHER ROBERTO PEREZ AFTER A MIGHTY SWING–AND–A–MISS BY EDWIN ENCARNACION.
MORE SPEEDING BALLS: INDIANS FIRST–BASEMAN CARLOS SANTANA (ABOVE) IS ABOUT TO CONNECT OFF BLUE JAYS STARTER AARON SANCHEZ; KLUBER LETS ONE FLY (BELOW).
BY THE FOURTH INNING — AT 5:15 P.M. — SHADOWS FROM THE THIRD–BASE STANDS AND LIGHT–TOWERS HAD CREPT ACROSS THE PLAYING FIELD.
THERE WAS PLENTY OF ROOM FOR FANS TO STRETCH OUT IN THE UPPER DECK (ABOVE AND BELOW) — THOUGH SOME SIGHTS WERE CLEARLY MORE APPEALING THAN OTHERS.
WITH OUR ROAMING PASSES, SHANE AND I MOVED TO FIRST–BASE SEATS IN THE SIXTH INNING, WHERE EVEN MY SUN–GLASSES (BELOW) HAD DIFFICULTY HANDLING THE GLARE.
AN ATTRACTIVE GAME SUMMARY FOR THE VISITORS.
PROGRESSIVE FIELD ON WALK TO OUR HOTEL AT 7:45 P.M. SATURDAY.
FACEBOOK: HOWARD BERGER [HUMBER COLLEGE]
LINKEDIN: HOWARD BERGER [BROADCAST MEDIA]