I was able to add a pair of autographs to my Mets collection last night at the Newark Bears home opener.
Newark’s new manager for 2013 is Garry Templeton, who finished his major league playing career with the 1991 New York Mets. He was much better known as a St. Louis Cardinal (where he was a two-time All-Star) and a San Diego Padre (where he played for 10 seasons and made his final All-Star appearance in 1985.)
The Rockland Boulders’ new pitching coach is Bobby M. Jones, the left-handed reliever who played for the New York Mets in 2000 and 2002. Jones also appeared in three early-season games for the 2004 Boston Red Sox, but spent most of his major league playing career with the Colorado Rockies.
The Bears lost the game 3-1, with their batters striking out 16 times. It seemed like the team was practicing the same
hitting batting philosophy as the Mets do these days – run up the opponents’ pitch count in expectation of it leading to better scoring chances.
It doesn’t work very well if the hitters on your team don’t have good enough pitch recognition skills to figure out which ones they can do something with and which pitches they should take. It’s a really bad idea in the Can-Am League when you can’t even count on the umpires to have a consistent strike zone from pitch to pitch.
There was a nice crowd for the game – announced at 1,559 – but there were problems with lines at the concession stands that were bad enough that the team handed out free tickets to the June 3rd game to fans who requested them as they were leaving the stadium.
One note for those who enjoy participating in on-field contests between innings- my friends did the sumo wrestling one, only to find out that there are no prizes this year. In the past, contest winners got vouchers for tickets to a future Bears game.