Last night I went to my first minor league baseball game. My buddy Tom and I took a trip down to Lancaster to see the JetHawks, single-A affiliate of the Houston Astros, play the Inland Empire 66er's. It was Tom's first minor league game too.
In years past, I've driven down Highway 14 to get to Las Vegas, and I've seen Clear Channel Stadium, where the JetHawks play, on the side of the freeway. I always wanted to see a game there.
Clear Channel Stadium, also known as the "Hangar" is over 50 miles from my home, so the situation had to be right to get me down there. The JetHawks either had to be giving away a bobblehead or they had to be playing the 66er's, who are the Dodgers single-A affiliate. Well last night I got both.
It was nice to see the 66er's play too. As a Dodger fan, I hear about the players in the farm system all the time. I finally got a chance to see some of them play. We sat right behind home plate and had a nice view of the game. We were also sitting amongst six or seven scouts. They all had radar guns and were taking notes on the players. Jon Michael Redding was the starting pitcher for the 66er's. I asked one of the scouts next to me how hard he was throwing, and he said between 89 and 93 mph, topping out once at 95. I was impressed with Redding's stuff through the first three innings. He had great command of his fastball and his slider had a nice bite. After getting through the JetHawk line-up once with success, Redding hit the wall in the fourth inning. That was a bit disappointing. Leading 5-1 after three innings, the 66er's gave up 11 unanswered runs to the JetHawks, who won 12-5.
The JetHawks did get the fans involved in different activities between innings. After the second inning, they were shooting shirts into the crowd with a canon, and I grabbed one of those.
|Full-size FA-18 test jet from NASA in front of the stadium|
|JetHawks Mascot KaBoom|
|My JetHawks Shirt|