“Bull Durham” Night: Wil Myers Called Up

Monday, June 17, 2013
silhouette of boy pointing

Photo by Elizabeth Matheson.

I wrote this in my last game story:

Not all ballgames should go nine innings, even tie ballgames. Is it necessary to have a winner, I sometimes think? Can we not appreciate seven innings of rich, rip-snorting baseball and then, satisfied, go home?

Later, my editor reminded me that plenty of people leave before the end of every single game. In the seventh inning, the fifth, whenever—at some point in the game’s latter half, you’ll see people start to trickle out of the ballpark, then stream out as the game wears on.

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Father’s Day

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Happy Father’s Day from all of us here at Bull City Summer. In celebration of the holiday, and of all the men in our lives, some paternal-themed images and musings from the ballpark and beyond:

Father’s Day at the Ballpark

Do fathers still play catch with their kids? Do they come home from a long day at the office or factory, loosen their ties or trade their work boots for tennis shoes, and grab their gloves?

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Indianapolis Indians beat Durham Bulls in extras: Fireworks and late bloomers

Saturday, June 15, 2013
pretzels

Photo by Elizabeth Matheson.

Preludes do not have to chirp out the tone of exactly what is to follow. A boys choir gave a slow, elegiac, almost mournful rendition of the National Anthem last night, some of the crowd singing along as if in sympathy, and the mood of the ballpark was a touch graver afterwards, in that liminal moment before the game’s first pitch. It was thrown, minutes later, by Durham Bulls newcomer Merrill Kelly, a fastball that rode way up and in on Indianapolis’ Josh Harrison, who spun out of the way—and the game announced its character with a tower-buzz of excitement.

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Photo of the Day: Barefoot Ballgame

Friday, June 14, 2013

Photo by Leah Sobsey.

Happy Friday. Let it all hang out.

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How Strange the Change: Durham Bulls Outslug Indianapolis Indians

Friday, June 14, 2013
national anthem

Photo by Elizabeth Matheson.

Triple-A is right below the majors, of course. There are some games here that seem no different from big-league games, in terms of quality of play. I’m thinking of games like this one, a memorable pitchers’ duel between major-league bound talents Mike and Minor and Matt Moore, from 2011. Back in 2010, when Dan Johnson was having his way with the entire International League on the way to winning its MVP Award, every time he stepped to the plate he brought the game to a major-league level.

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State of the Bulls Address: Ghost World Edition

Thursday, June 13, 2013
ghost world

Scarlett Johansson and Thora Birch in Ghost World. Courtesy of United Artists and Granada Film Productions.

“Ghost world” for two reasons. Topmost: I’m writing this on June 12th, an off-day for the Bulls. It’s the date on which the just-finished-high-school narrator of Aimee Mann’s wonderfully wistful song (warning: bad video!) of the same title asks aloud if it’s the longest day of the year. It’s not—that would be June 21—but it’s such a good song, for one thing, and there’s something so touching about a very bright kid being wrong, especially in this moment just before a long, aimless summer, before all the uncertainties and humblings of adulthood commence.

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“Herald the Crack of Bats” – The Paris Review

Wednesday, June 12, 2013
Bulls billboard

Photo by Frank Hunter.

Today, Adam Sobsey has a new Bull City Summer piece in the Paris Review Daily:

I am a pitching chauvinist. The mechanics of it are so complex, so cerebral, so deliberate—so difficult—that in the past, I’ve compared pitchers to authors and hitters to readers. Hitting a baseball is essentially reactive and instinctive; it seems like the sort of thing almost any big lug could do with enough practice, as long as he has wrists strong and quick enough to swing a bat, and decent hand-eye coordination.

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Photo of the Day: Green Dress Girl

Wednesday, June 12, 2013
serious little girl in a green dress

Photo by Leah Sobsey.

Don’t worry, little lady, it’s Hump Day.

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Photo of the Day: A Watchful Moment

Tuesday, June 11, 2013
player-leaning

Photo by Leah Sobsey.

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Spicy Pepper Relish: The Flavors of the Ballpark

Monday, June 10, 2013
Samantha's refrigerator

Samantha Swan’s kitchen. Photo by Anna Cantwell.

If you’ve attended games at Durham Bulls Athletic Park so far this season, you may have noticed a new selection in concessions, the Nuke Dog, a hot dog named after Nuke Laloosh from the movie Bull Durham, made with a spicy pepper relish. This special dog—putting the “hot” in dog—is the brainchild of Samantha Swan of Chapel Hill’s Cottage Lane Kitchen, and last week it finished runner-up in a national Minor League Baseball food contest.

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