Tagged: University of South Carolina

Reflections on Carolina Stadium

This past Saturday (my birthday)  I attended my first college baseball game at the University of South Carolina’s Carolina Stadium.  There, I got to see the Gamecocks beat Ole Miss.  Here are some of my game-time observations:

  • I’m impressed by the overall feel of the park.  The place may only be slightly smaller that Charleston’s Joe Riley Park.
  • This scoreboard/video display blows Joe Riley Park away!
  • NO BEER??  It is a college game after all…
  • Cocky – USC’s mascot may be the funniest i’ve seen at any level of sport.
  • The stadium’s dugouts are huge – they may well be the same size as those a Comerica Park.
  • I like the left field bleachers and the flags across the top, in order of the SEC standings.
  • Of course, I dig the 360 degree accessto throighout the seating bowl.  I walked the circumference of the seating at least twice during the game.
  • Naturally, an old wrestling mark like me would get a kick out the Ric Flair “Woooo1”  sound bit played after a USC pitcher struck someone out.
  • About the only suggestions i would make for the whole a/v presentation is more pitcher data – pitch count, name, etc  and less country music!
  • Overall, a vey Major League-style presentation with musc, replay on the big screen, and the occsional t-shirt toss.
  • Had a guy enter in front of me who flashed a San Diego Padres business card.  Ya gotta wonder how many scouts are crawiling around this place.
  • The replays have sponsors onthem…cha-ching!
  • “The John Deere Drag”  at the top of the 6th…cute…
  • Gotta review th balk rule for both college and pros.
  • The stadium is located way-off campus.  a bit off the beaten path, but its situated so that it provides a nice lttle view of the part of the Columbia skyline.
  • Aneat little touch, and maybe its a college thing:  I noticed that when  apitching change is made, the manager doesn’t take the ball and give it to the new pitcher.  Rather, the outgoing pitchers gives it to the incoming pitcher.
  • I will never get used to the “PING!” of the aluminum bats…

All in all, I was very impressed.  I dont think it was hype when USC claimed they had one of the best college ballparks in the US.  They also have a very strong fan base.  No wonder the team formerly known as Capital City Bombers (now the Greenville Drive) moved.

Just heard a chilling stat on the MLB Network,  the Tigers are 0-5 at night this season,

Of course the Tigers lost…they were televised in Charleston!

It seems anytime I’m able to watch the Tigers here in Charleston (and no, MLB Extra Inings doesn’t count) they lose.  Saturday night was no exception.

So far, it appears my worst fears about this year’s Tiger team are true.  A nine game stretch against Cleveland and KC did little to show us what this team is made of.  Seriously, how often have we been able to describe any Tigers team by saying “their hitting is soft, but their rotation is rock-solid”?

We all knew this West Coast road trip was going to be tough.  If these first two games are any indication, it’s going to be down right brutal.

Congratulations to  Ubaldo Jiminez and the Colorado Rockies on their first no hitter in franchise history.  My God, is this really their 18th season?  With tonight’s no-no and several near-no hitters already this season, is it too early to speculate that the post-steroid era will be one of pitching dominance?

Saturday was my birthday, and I spent much of the day at the South Carolina / Ole Miss game in Columbia  – my first college game.  Hopefuly, I’ll be recapping that tomorrow, along with whatever pics I can get from my Blackberry.