A Cup Of Coffee With The Major League Players

Yesterday I was part of a very special day at Victory Field. The Pittsburgh Pirates and the Cincinnati Reds squared off in the final exhibition game of the year at Victory Field. If you have read this blog for very long you know that I love baseball. Thirty years ago I really thought that someday I would be a Major League Baseball player. As with most kids with that dream the skills don’t match up to the dream, and things change. A detour to the manufacturing world was in my path. While in the manufacturing world a new dream emerged. I found photography, and fell in love with it. That resulted in a path change that lead directly to where I am today. At times I don’t think that I sit back and think about that. As with anything I have had a taste of some good things, and I want to taste it more. What I don’t think about is just how fast I got to where I am today. A few years ago I would have not thought that it would be possible. After I sit and think about where I am it is time to get back to work. There is always time to get better.

Taking Time to Pause

Yesterday I arrived at the ballpark about seven hours before the start of the game. I knew that I would not sleep in anyway so why not head to the park to create something? I knew that people would be in the park allowing me to photograph the sun rise over the city of Indianapolis from the press box of the stadium. I thought that it would be an interesting shot that has probably not been done very much. Of course the clouds that would have made for an awesome photo that blew in, blew out just as quickly leaving the sky empty. Knowing my idea was busted I moved on. I went down to the field to photograph the tarp being taken off of the field by the interns. From there I made my way to both clubhouses to get some shots for game teasers. The Reds clubhouse was empty with no equipment in it. The team had yet to arrive in town. The Pirates clubhouse was made up just the way that I thought it might be. The jerseys where hung facing out at each locker, and everything was ready to go. I made the photo above, and then stopped to take it all in. I was in a Major League clubhouse. My ten year old self would have been very, very pleased. Heck the nearly forty year old looking around was quite happy. I stood there for a minute and thought of the Pirates names that I grew up with as a kid. Names like Stargell, Van Slyke, Pena, Parker, Ray, and Madlock. As a kid they were the Pirates that I knew. Whispers of the Pirates greats were always around though. Names like Clemente, Mazeroski, Wagner, Waner, and Kiner filled the pages of the books that I read. Now it is time for a new generation of Pirates. Many of the current players made their way through the very clubhouse that their jersey sat in. This was the one time where I really stopped to think about what I was doing yesterday. A quick pause before getting back to work.

The Beautiful Backdrop of Victory Field

This summer as I embark on this adventure with the Indianapolis Indians I have a daunting task. I will have to make photos that look good in Victory Field. Wait a minute…that is the easy part. Victory Field is one of the most scenic ballparks in Minor League Baseball. It has won countless awards, and will continue to win them. Making photos of a park this beautiful is easy. The challenge this year will be making fresh images in a park that is celebrating its twenty year anniversary. My goal as the season begins is to try and bring a fresh eye to the park, and hopefully do something that has not been done before. Opening Day is less than two weeks away. The summer of baseball that I have been waiting on is nearly here. I had a great time photographing the current Pittsburgh Pirate players, but now the task moves to photographing the players of the future.

More Photos From the Day

Getting to the stadium early cemented the fact that I would put together an Exposure page of the day. I had a good collection of images showing the various events of the day, and Exposure is a great way to showcase that. You can find my page from the game here. Over the course of the next couple of days I am going to get to do some amazing things. I will shoot my first Final Four game, and then hopefully my first National Title Game. At some point when it is all over I will have to sit back and go through my images just to prove to myself that I actually just did everything. Until then you can check out what I shot yesterday.

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About Pinola Photo

I am a sports and lifestyle photographer based in West Lafayette, IN home of Purdue University. I cover sports for Big Ten teams as well as other colleges. You can follow me on twitter @pinolaphoto. You can also view my website at www.davewegielphoto.net

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