Monthly Archives: February 2011

R-Phils to Hold “Dutch” Night!

The Reading Phillies have announced that on June 1st, they will hold a Pennsylvania Dutch Night promotion to include former Phillie Darren “Dutch” Daulton!

There will be flashback prices for food and select tickets, a pregame concert and autograph session.. Leave it those R-Phils for another top notch promotion!

Details from the Reading Phillie’s website:

(Reading, PA) – The Reading Phillies, the Double-A affiliate of the Philadelphia Phillies since 1967, are pleased to announce that on Wednesday, June 1, the club will “Turn Back the Clock” to the year 1983, and with that, will host a special PA Dutch Night, featuring legendary Reading Phillies and Philadelphia Phillies catcher Darren “Dutch” Daulton. The game, which is set for a 2:05 p.m. first-pitch, is easily shaping up to be one of the top promotions on the R-Phils 2011 schedule – perhaps reshuffling the club’s Top “20” promotions.

“We are excited to be able to add this to our already impressive promotional schedule,” said R-Phils GM Scott Hunsicker. “Berks County has the largest PA Dutch population in the State of PA, so we are celebrating with Dutch food, Dutch dialect, and “Dutch” Daulton – you can’t beat that!”

Wednesday’s game will now officially serve as Bobby Bubbenmoyer PA Dutch Night, featuring Darren “Dutch” Daulton, with a special Autograph and Photo Session, thanks to Yuengling/830 AM WEEU. Fans can expect some great Dutch food, along with Daulton, a three-time Major League Baseball All-Star, who spent the 1983 season in Baseballtown.

VIST Financial Plaza gates open at 12:00 p.m. on Wednesday, June 1, and the first 2,000 adults will receive an R-Phils Tailgate Chair, thanks to Apex Community Federal Credit Union. Tailgates will be even better with this comfortable R-Phils Tailgate Chair. As part of the excitement, fans will be treated to great musical entertainment on the Weston Center Winning Smiles Stage, with fantastic music of the 1980’s, courtesy of Mr. Han the 80’s band, who will perform an exceptional 90-minute concert from 12:00 PM to 1:30 PM. The 80’s are back — for a day, at America’s Classic Ballpark.

Also on this day, fans can enjoy a special “Turn Back the Clock to the Darren Daulton 1983 R-Phils”, with 1983 prices on tickets, food and beer, courtesy of 830 AM WEEU. Fans can get a ticket to the game for the price it cost in 1983. Ticket prices are as follows: Child/Senior GA – $1.50, Adult GA – $3.50, and Green Reserved Seat – $4.50 (Yellow and Blue Box are regular price). Fans can also enjoy $1 concession menu items, as well as a special $2 Happy Hour on beer, plus $3 Yuengling drafts all game!

“This day was initially the 16th best promotion on our Top “20” list, but now, we feel that it should be even higher up, thanks to the addition of “Dutch” Daulton and PA Dutch Night,” added Hunsicker. “This is easily one of our best ten promotions of the season. Fans will not want to miss this one!”

A native of Arkansas City, Kansas, Daulton was drafted by Philadelphia in the 25th round of the 1980 draft. In 1983, Daulton hit .262 with 19 home runs and 83 RBIs for the R-Phils – leading the club to an impressive 96-44 record. Fans will be able to meet and greet the legendary Daulton from 2:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m., and will have the chance to get his autograph as well. Daulton will then depart FirstEnergy Stadium, so that he can get back to Philadelphia for his radio show — “Talking Baseball with Dutch”, which airs on 97.5 The Fanatic.

Single-game tickets to this game, as well as all 71 home games this season, are now available for purchase, and interested fans can log-on to, stop by the R-Phils temporary offices, which are located across from FirstEnergy Stadium (located off N. Front St.), or call the R-Phils ticket office at 610-370-BALL. R-Phils Tickets — Same Great Price. America’s Classic Ballpark…Just Got Even Better.


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Ironpig Ticket Sales, Nat’l Pig Day & More

I set off today around noon to check out the National Pig day. There was a long line of folks lined up in the bitter cold wind to buy tickets, some saying they waited as long as 4 hours for the chance to get games they wanted.

Get used to this weather Pig Fans, the Ironpigs have 22 home games scheduled by May 16th. With a heavy home stand early on in the year one wonders if the league is compensating for the high attendance that Ironpig’s fans have accomplished over the past 3 years. Give the other teams a chance to pull in warm weather crowds. Not my main point, but something to ponder.

A few things of note from National Pig Day…

Our good friend Matt Provence was seen cooking up complimentary hot dogs. Per his press release later in the day he noted that 1,494 hot dogs were distributed adding that 6 never made it to the bun. I witnessed his skill with the hot dog tongs and have to say only 6 dogs hitting the deck this morning is an accomplishment. :-)

Another thing I noticed was a set of Ironpig go carts in a plastic wrapped wooden carton sitting on the concourse by section 115. At first glance they appear to be mini-Nascar models both with what looks like a lawn mower engine. I wonder if the Pork Racers will take things to a new level…

Photo by Heather Mastropieri

Also from the Ironpig’s press release:
·12,000 tickets sold at Coca-Coca Park, via phone and on-line (more expected on-line through midnight)
·1,031 complimentary IronPigs Yard Signs distributed (one per family in attendance that chose to register)
·1,400 complimentary pulled pork sandwiches distributed by Royal Gourmet
·600 complimentary pretzels distributed by Philly Pretzel Factory
·1,150 cups of complimentary Hot Cocoa dispensed
·768 can of complimentary Coca-Cola Products distributed
·4 live pigs available for petting and photos compliments of Ross Mill Farm and Pig Placement Network

Of note today, Chad Durbin signed with the Cleveland Indians.

Also wanted to mention (as we have a diverse fan base out there) that the Lehigh Valley Yankee Fan Club will be holding their 2011 Kick off meeting on Tuesday night at Hampton Lanes.

From their Facebook site:

Scheduled To Appear:

Scranton Yankees – AAA Farm Team of the New York Yankees
Trenton Thunder – AA Farm Team of the New York Yankees
Lehigh Valley Ironpigs – AAA Farm Team of the Phillies – General Manager Kurt Landis & PA Announcer Tim Chorones

Glad to see the local franchises supporting a fan club.

One last thing before I finish for the day.. with the Phillies defeating the Yankees today in a Nationally televised game I really don’t have much to say that you don’t already know so I will share my view of today’s game.


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Another Off Season Milestone Tomorrow

Tomorrow is another day enroute to Opening day at The Coke. National Pig Day has historically been the first opportunity to purchase single game tickets for the Ironpigs season.

Compared to other years, this one seems pretty standard and tame. Early goers can get a free pork sandwich or hot dog. Folks that come by later in the morning can see the clown (to clarify, it’s a lady in a clown outfit who performs for children) and you can take a few swings in the batting cage. This year you can also take home an Ironpig’s yard sign that appears to be similiar to the standard plastic over wire frame sign that politicians spread throughout the Valley each fall. Free gift or free advertising? I’ll leave that decision up to you.

Anyways, just another step closer to the gates opening and baseball returning for the summer.

41 Days…



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Phillies Vs. Florida State Results From Today

After an exausting search to find this game broadcast, I gave up and settled for the box score. The Phillies defeated Florida State by a score of 8 to 0 in 9 innings.

Full box score can be seen at the Phillies Web site.

Some potential Ironpigs got playing time today.

Jeff Larish was 0 for 2 with a strike out and 2 left on base.

Tagg Bozied was 0 for 1 in a pinch hitting opportunity.

John Mayberry was 1 for 1 with a walk and run scored.

Domonic Brown was 1 for 3 with a run scored.

Pete Orr was 0 for 1 with an RBI.

Josh Barfield went 1 for 2.

On the pitching side we had Naylor and Bonine with 2 innings each and Perez, Stutes, Schwimer, DeFratus and Mathieson each having an inning.

Florida state managed just 4 hits with Stutes striking out the side in the 6th and Naylor, DeFratus and Mathieson all striking out 2.

Another day closer to opening day!



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Food! Food! & MORE Food! R-Phil’s Rule!

Ribs at a ballgame? Seafood options? NICE! And for my veggietarian friends.. a nice new menu!

I can’t say it any better than the Reading Phillies themselves; from their website:

(Reading, PA) – Earlier today, at a press conference held at Good Eatz Green Café in Reading, the Reading Phillies, the Double-A affiliate of the Philadelphia Phillies since 1967, announced that in 2011 and beyond, the club will be offering fans more food than ever before at FirstEnergy Stadium.
“We will continue to provide our fans with great food at affordable prices,” noted R-Phils Director of Operations Andy Bortz. “Last year we were able to add five new items, and this year, thanks to the $10 million renovations, we are able to add much, much more. We definitely have something for everyone.”
With the addition of the brand-new VIST Financial Plaza, which is four times as large as the previous Food Court, fans will be treated to a wide variety of food. VIST Financial Plaza, the signature element of the $10 Million Renovations, will serve as the place where all fans can go to enjoy great food, music, and more. While fans chow down on delicious ballpark fare, there will be great musical entertainment on the Weston Center Winning Smiles Stage for all 71 games this season – the first time ever fans can enjoy live music at every R-Phils game. Of course, there will also be food throughout the concourse as well.
New to the ballpark in 2011, the R-Phils will have even more pizza than ever before, thanks to some great pizza selections from DiGiorno. Fans can expect a DiGiorno pizza stand as they make their way into VIST Financial Plaza. Also, fans will be able to munch on scrumptious funnel cake fries, courtesy of J & J Snack Foods, delicious BBQ ribs from Willie Jack’s BBQ, fantastic cheesesteak sliders from Taste of Italy, as well as tasty popcorn chicken and mozzarella sticks from Tyson.
Fans looking for healthy options will also be set, as the R-Phils will have great healthy menu items for fans this season. Vegetarians and all fans that come out to the ballpark can now enjoy great salads and wraps from Good Eatz Green Café. There will also be gluten-free options, courtesy of Good Eatz Green Café, on the ballpark menu as well.
Along with the permanent concession stands added to VIST Financial Plaza, the R-Phils will have a rotating cart added to VIST Financial Plaza, and fans can expect some great new menu items there as well. On Mondays and Tuesdays, hungry fans can expect great tasting items from Kathryn’s Katering, including pot pies. On Wednesdays and Sundays, Kathryn’s Katering is back to satisfy the taste buds of R-Phils fans, and each of those two days will feature delicious pasta dishes.
Seafood lovers are also in for a real treat, as the R-Phils will have delicious seafood meals every Thursday, Friday, and Saturday. On each of those three days, fans can chow down on crab cakes, sushi, soups, fish sandwiches, and even more, thanks to great food from Adelphia Seafood.
Another addition to the concession menu, which is more about convenience than about new item, is that now the Grand Slam Grill will feature draft beer selections at the same point of service as all of the delicious ballpark food. Along with burgers, “churgers”, French fries, and more, fans who are 21 years old and older can now choose one of four draft beer flavors right there at the Grand Slam Grill. In the past, draft beer was only available at separate beer stands.
And, the R-Phils are pleased to announce that all of the ballpark standards, which fans have become accustom to over the years, will be back as well. Food options at America’s Classic Ballpark will still range from classic ballpark fare, such as hot dogs, peanuts and Cracker Jacks, to specialty items like the popular cheeseburger dog, funnel cake, and the “churger” — which combines a burger and chicken breast separated by a slice of American cheese on a fresh roll.

Other great items, such as pierogies, onion rings, Italian sausage, are back as well. And, delicious snacks, like pretzels, nachos, ice cream, and Rita’s Italian Ices, which will feature even more options this season, are back also. Another favorite, which was added in 2010 – the “Nuts for You” stand, will be back at America’s Classic Ballpark and
fans can choose from gourmet nuts, which include cashews, almonds, and even kettle corn.
Kids will also be able to expect the same great food, and will once again be able to enjoy the popular Crazy Hot Dog Vendor Kid’s Meal. Consisting of a hot dog or a peanut butter and jelly sandwich – your choice, the kid’s meal also features apple slices, Goldfish crackers, a Crazy Hot Dog Vendor hat, a juice box, and a collectible toy.

Back for 2011, the R-Phils are offering any fan the opportunity to add the all-you-can-eat Deck Buffet to any ticket, (Blue Box, Yellow Box, Red Reserved, or General Admission) for only $12. The wristband grants fans access to the 2 1/2 hour all-you-can-eat Deck Buffet, located in left field. The deck menu includes barbecued chicken, burgers, hot dogs, baked beans, pasta & potato salads, cookies, lemonade, iced tea and Pepsi products.
Fans interested in renewing their season tickets and mini-plans, or purchasing single-game tickets for the R-Phils Opening Weekend, can do so now by visiting, or by calling 610-370-BALL. Single-game tickets are also now available for purchase online at, and will be available in-person for the first time this year, on Saturday, February 26 at FirstEnergy Stadium from 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. R-Phils Tickets — Same Great Price. America’s Classic Ballpark…Just Got Even Better.


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Carpenter Sent to the Pen

Just noticed an article posted by Todd Zolecki of the Phillies:

They are making pitcher Drew Carpenter a reliever. I wonder where that puts Carpenter in the organization come opening day? A new role might mean Reading or even Lakewood/Clearwater. If anything at all, the Ironpigs will have a great spot starter for those bullpen days.



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National Anthem Auditions

I made it out to the Pig Pen on Saturday to watch the National Anthem auditions. I felt bad for the judges who sat through well over 100 renditions of The Star Spangled Banner. There were a few that forgot the words, a few that belted it out perfectly and even more who sang their heart out hoping to open an Ironpig’s home game this season. The National Anthem at ballgames is one of my personal pet peeves. Sing the song. Noone would add a personal touch to “Take Me Out to the Ballgame.” It’s a song, it has music and words. If you’re making an album or singing in the shower.. go for it. Sing like noone is listening. For the start of a ballgame, stick to the script. That’s how I feel.

There was one auditioner that stuck out to me. I wish I had gotten his name. He sang what I feel was the best of the day. Sporting a long greying beard, he stood a firm parade rest stance and belted out the National Anthem with a passion that would make anyone proud. My vote, if I had one, would go to him. Thank you sir for a great performance and I hope to see you open one of the 72 games I will be attending this summer.

More about the United States National Anthem…

I reference an image I found on Wikipedia (yes, Wikipedia)

The article begins:

“The annexed song was composed under the following circumstances — A gentleman had left Baltimore, in a flag of truce for the purpose of getting released from the British fleet, a friend of his who had been captured at Marlborough. He went as far as to the mouth of Patuxent, and was not permitted to return lest the intended attack on Baltimore should be disclosed. He was therefore brought up to the Bay to the mouth of Patapsco, where the flag vessel was kept under the guns of a frigate, and he was compelled to witness the bombardment of Fort McHenry, which the Admiral had boasted he would carry in a few hours, and that the city must fall. He watched the flag at the Fort through the whole day with an anxiety that can be better felt than described, until the night prevented him from seeing it. In the night he watched the Bomb Shells, and at early dawn his eye was again greeted by the proudly waving flag of his country.”

Ok, it’s written a long time ago and some language may be antiquated for most. Let’s think about this though. The guy’s friend was captured and being held a prisoner. He jumped in a rowboat and headed out to visit the British warships. A rowboat vs. a fleet of battleships. He then is told he cannot leave because he may have heard of the plan to attack Baltimore so he sits and helplessly watches his hometown, family and friends being bombarded by what was the most powerful Navy in the world at that time. He focuses on the flag, knowing that the signal for surrender would be lowering the flag. When the sun comes up in the morning he sees the flag and realizes that his city, his comrades and his country had not given up. They had survived.

Let’s take a brief look at United States Code 36 U.S.C. § 301

National Anthem
(a) Designation.— The composition consisting of the words and music known as the Star-Spangled Banner is the national anthem.

(b) Conduct During Playing.— During a rendition of the national anthem—
(1) when the flag is displayed—
(A) individuals in uniform should give the military salute at the first note of the anthem and maintain that position until the last note;
(B) members of the Armed Forces and veterans who are present but not in uniform may render the military salute in the manner provided for individuals in uniform; and
(C) all other persons present should face the flag and stand at attention with their right hand over the heart, and men not in uniform, if applicable, should remove their headdress with their right hand and hold it at the left shoulder, the hand being over the heart; and
(2) when the flag is not displayed, all present should face toward the music and act in the same manner they would if the flag were displayed.

Take note, this is in the United States code. It is not a tradition. It is a law. Granted, our leaders normally do not prosecute for something like this.. but it is a law. Note that women are not required to remove headdress.

That’s my two cents for the day.



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