FanFest was a blast. Once you got over the typical problems with something like this - lines, concession prices, Dodger fans - it was easy to get lost in baseball mayhem. There were memorabilia stands, video batting cages, some good photo opportunites, and tons of baseballica on display. There was also trivia, and I again - as I so often do - had to ward off several ladies after showing my trivia acumen. "The answer is the Waner brothers, Lloyd and Paul. I'll take `catchers' for five poin...ladies, please. I can't promise these underpants will make it back to the right person, so stop throwing them on the stage."
It was fun, and everyone in the convention center was buzzing about All-Star stuff. All-Star All-Star All-Star? Are you going to the All-Star Game? How much All can an All-Star Star if an All-Star could Star All? The city is festooned with All-Star banners. The streets were packed with baseball tourists, and that's a neat site to behold - different people, each in the hat of their team, milling about and talking baseball.
So I fully acknowledge that I'm the sicko here. The big picture of capital-`b' Baseball eluded me for most of the day. All I could think about was the disappointment of Barry Zito, Rich Aurilia, and Dave Roberts. All I could think about was a farm system that wasn't likely to produce much immediate help and a pending free agent market that'll only be for suckers. I found myself wondering about why Luis Figueroa got a call-up and Tomas De La Rosa didn't, and wondering if either would be an immediate offensive improvement on Omar Vizquel. I thought this all over a $280 pretzel, which served only to make me pissier, poorer, and thirstier.
This season is pretty amazing for San Francisco baseball. There are some cities that will have to wait decades, if not most of a century, for a season like this. An All-Star Game and a hallowed record chase in the same season is an absolute embarrassment of riches. But I'm not enjoying either to their full potential right now, and that makes me ill.
I need the people in a similar funk to step forward and be counted, and I need the people who can see the palm trees for the Plaza to write something that will snap us the hell out of it.
And I need Barry Bonds to hit one into the water off of Dan Haren. That'd be awesome.