My Eighteen Favorite Baseball Photos Of 2018
This is a post that could have been written a long time ago. I have not shot a baseball game since early July. That is hard for me to believe. I love baseball and I always try and get to at least one fall ball game, but it was not meant to be this year. In the short season that I had though I had a blast making photos. The college season was fun with ISU having some great walk offs early on in the season. The end of my college season was in Mason, Ohio as I shot the Big East Baseball Tournament. For the second straight year I did not attend a Major League game. That is unheard of for me. Maybe this is the year I finally get back to see the Sox play. Better yet maybe I can get in the photo well. Before I start dreaming though here are my favorite images from this past baseball season.
18. This picture leads off the countdown for a couple of reasons. The first is that I always liked the form of Dalton Laney. When he got into the game at ISU I enjoyed making photos of him. In two years he will be pitching for IU and I am not too sure about that. The other reason is of course that his last name is also the first name of my little one.
17. Part of the fun of photographing minor league baseball is seeing the future stars on their way up. Here Michael Kopech warms up before a game in Indianapolis. Kopech is a future star, and it was cool to see him in person. The signage at Victory Field adds to the shot as well.
16. The night before I started the Big East baseball tournament I took in the Dayton Dragons game. It was my second game of the day in fact after watching an afternoon game in Indy. Not many people are crazy enough to photograph two games the day before shooting a tournament, but I love baseball and I knew that my season was winding down.
15. At the Big East baseball tournament I went out to see the whiffle ball game going on at the field designed for it. This is where it all starts, and this little moments became one of my favorites of the tournament.
14. This was one of the first baseball pictures that I made last year. I was so excited to shoot baseball that I listened to a special baseball playlist on the way down to Terre Haute. This image felt a lot like I felt. Ready to charge into the new season.
13. Here Sycamore third baseman Jake Means saves the game at Purdue by grabbing this errant throw at third base. Had the ball made it to the outfield I think Indiana State ends up losing the game. As it turned out the Sycamores won a hard fought game on the road.
12. Emotion was the word of the week at the Big East Baseball tourney. Here St. Johns celebrates some early success. Of course they would go on to win the tournament as well. This was an early image though that put me at ease.
11. Here is another shot of St. John’s at the Big East tournament. They really played well and earned their NCAA Tournament berth. Here I liked all of the red in the shot.
10. This is the first of two fun shots of Sycamore senior Ethan Larrison. On opening day I started playing around with the multi-exposure feature of my camera. The light was right so why not? I liked how this one turned out.
9. Walk offs are always fun. Here Indiana State makes an improbable comeback against Xavier in an early season game. These photos are fun, and I wish that I could make more of them. Of course that means I have to go through the stress each time too, but that is totally worth it.
8. There is a ballpark in my neighborhood. How cool is that? I try and head down there as much as I can, but the high school season usually lines up exactly with the college season. Now that I am home more this year maybe I can catch a couple more West Side games. Catcher Owen Walbaum is a player that it seems like I have been photographing forever. Now that he has committed to Purdue I will get to photograph him for four more years at least.
7. Here is another fun shot of Sycamore pitcher Ethan Larrison. I love the frozen ball, but I also love what looks like a smile on Larri’s face. This was a clean image, and I knew it would be on this countdown from the moment that I saw it on the back of my camera.
6. Sometimes you have the most fun before the ball game even starts. Here with a player looking to the stands I was able to make a portrait without them even knowing about it. The blue sky and the blue jersey seemed to work well together here.
5. Baseball and rain do not mix well. When they come together though they can be fun to photograph. Here Purdue senior Nick Dalesandro gets a lead off of first base in a torrential rain. The game would be called shortly after this, but it made for good photos for a short period of time.
4. The best baseball moments don’t have to be the key play. Here a family enjoys a Dayton Dragons game as the sun goes down. When the light left the playing field I started moving around looking for shots like this. This was by far my favorite of those shots.
3. More pregame fun at Victory Field. Sometimes I wonder about my actions as a photographer. When I saw this selfie starting to happen I made a beeline over to it to make this photo. It is one of my favorite of the season, and it was sheer chance that I was able to make it.
2. The light as the sun goes down at Loeb Stadium is amazing. The sad news is that after this season they are tearing the existing structures down to build a bigger ballpark. That ballpark will be oriented the wrong way if the late light gets in at all. This season I need to get to Loeb as much as possible to make some photos in this great light. This looks studio lit, but it is the pitcher on the mound during a game. You can’t beat that kind of light.
- As much as I talk about peak action not always being the number one thing to go for my number one shot of the year is peak action. I have always just loved this shot from the Big East tournament. Everything seemed to work in my favor here to make it. I will be back in Mason, Ohio this spring for another go at the tournament, and I hope to make many more photos like last year in-between trips to the free ice cream stand.
Usually when I am done with these posts I reflect on the year and think about what I can do better. With this one though all that I can think about is how I can’t wait for baseball season to start. It doesn’t come to me until March, but maybe this is the year I find time to go and shoot some early season baseball down south.
I think that I only have two more of these posts left. Next Monday I have a best of sports post planned with my overall favorite shots of the year the next day. It is time to move forward in 2019, but it has been fun looking back at 2018 too.