Lexington Legends vs. Hickory Crawdads (South Atlantic League)
Whitaker Bank Ballpark-Lexington, KY: Because I’m so far behind, I’m going to start combining some of these double-headers into one post. That being said, I can say that the rain down here is definitely a double-edged sword. Due to a rain out the night before, the Legends played a double-header, but also back in the OC, Brian’s little league game was rained out, and that was the most important game of the trip for his Papa to see. And I guess we were lucky to get any baseball at all, as it rained the entire trip from Nashville to Lexington, and cleared up just before the first pitch. I’d also like to point out that Whitaker Bank Ballpark is a great place to watch a game. It doesn’t have all of the bells and whistles of some of the other parks, but for a pure baseball experience I highly recommend it.
On the bump for Lexington the night before was Andre Davis, who pitched two scoreless innings before the rain hit. Taking over and earning the win was Geoff Bramblett. He only gave up three hits and struck out four in the victory. Earning the save was Grant Gavin who struck out three. Final game 1: Legends 1, Crawdads 0.
The second game had a little more excitement, despite the fact that it was only a seven inning game. The Legends were led offensively by Manny Olloque, who went 2/3 with an RBI and two runs scored. John Brontsema also went 2/3 with an RBI and scored a run, while Kort Peterson had two RBI’s. The starting pitcher for Lexington was Jace Vines, who threw six solid innings for the win. He gave up four runs on six hits, whole striking out one. Final (7) game 2: Legends 9, Crawdads 4.
We did start to get a little rain toward the end of the second game, but that gave us a chance to move to the upper levels and still get a great view of the game anyway. Again, this is such a great ballpark and I hope to see many more games here over the years.
Whitaker Bank Ballpark-Lexington, KY: While my dad was visiting from Michigan, we decided to take a little trip over to Lexington and see what it had to offer. Unfortunately, not much is going on anywhere tourist-wise, but I definitely wanted to stop by and see where the Lexington Legends played ball, as I wasn’t able to make it to a game there over the summer.
The Legends staff was nice enough to let us have the run of the place, and take a look around the ballpark. I really like the layout of the seating and how close the seats are to the field. I can only imagine sitting in the front row would be a great experience. The capacity is about 8,000 and I was told the Legends draw well, and that really doesn’t surprise me. It was nice to just be inside a ballpark, as this is the time of year I really start missing being at the games. Being a fan of the South Atlantic League, I’ll be able to see some familiar teams play against the Legends as well. Trevor had some luck, and found a ball from the Ohio Valley Conference that must have been playing some college games there. I took just a few photos, and this is just a sneak peak at the fun we plan on having in 2017. Have a safe and happy new year, and we’ll see you all at the ballparks the spring.
Burlington Athletic Stadium–Burlington, NC: On our way east from Greensboro, we decided to stop by the home of the Burlington Royals to check out the ballpark and see if they had a gift shop open. The Royals are in the Rookie Appalachian League, so they don’t start play until later on in June. Unfortunately, they didn’t have any memorabilia for sale at this time, but the ballpark was wide open for us to poke around a bit. We were also lucky enough to run into the Royals GM, Ben Abzug, who last season was named the Appalachian League Executive of the Year. Ben was a very gracious host, giving us a history of the team and the ballpark. I found it very interesting that the ballpark was originally built in Virginia, but purchased and brought to Burlington piece by piece when they were awarded a team. He also explained to us the differences between the rookie league and other Minor League clubs. It was a very interesting and informative morning! Too bad we couldn’t see a game here, but at least I made it into the park to get some nice pics. Next stop…Durham!