Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Portland Sea Dogs

We went to our first Portland Sea Dogs game last night at Hadlock Field. Even though it's August, it felt more like football weather, at least to us. There were fans keeping warm under blankets, but plenty of people still ate their Sea Dog Biscuits (ice cream sandwiches that are like Chipwiches).

Given the weather in Portland, it's probably a good idea that the Sea Dogs are no longer an affiliate of the Florida Marlins. They are the AA affiliate of the Boston Red Sox, and the design of Hadlock Field certainly takes its inspiration from Fenway Park. Left field is dominated by the "Maine Monster," a nearly identical recreation of the Green Monster. Both walls are 37 feet high, but the Maine Monster is 315 feet down the line not 310, it's not as long, and it's made of wood. No one got a hit off the Monster last night, so we couldn't see how the bounces off the wall may differ. There's a miniature Citgo sign and Coke bottle on top of the wall for more Fenway flavor. But before you think you're in Boston, the giant L.L. Bean boot in right field gives you the proper local Maine flavor.

Hadlock is truly a neighborhood ballpark. More so than Fenway. It's next to the local gym and ice arena and across the street from triple deckers. Last night was Brandon Moss bobblehead night. We showed up right before gates opened, and as we walked by the triple deckers, we saw a long line snaking all around the block. Hundreds of people were waiting 90 minutes before the gates opened to get in-- and this is for a minor league game! (The free bobblehead was the real draw, though. Surprisingly, there were still some left when we got in the park.) Last night's game was a sellout-- another thing in common with Fenway.

We're leaving Freeport and its outlets behind today and heading north through Augusta and moose country to Quebec City.

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