Category Archives: FLF of the Game

500 Level Fans of the Game

It’s been a while since I’ve posted a fan of the game, so today brings a special 3-for-1 treat.

First up comes this fan from  Sunday’s game against Detroit.  I’m not sure whether this should be taken as a compliment, as in “ho-hum, the Jays are destroying their opponents again and hitting tons of home runs, been there done that,” or as an insult.  Either way, I can honestly say that during the middle of a 9-2 romp with home runs flying out of the park like crazy, I never expected to see somebody pull out a book and have a read.  Never.

Ladies and gents, The Reader:

The Reader

Next, from last night’s game against the Indians.  If there’s one thing I can’t stand it’s when people refuse to remove the sticker from the brim of a newly purchased cap.  I don’t understand the point of it.  What is there to show off by doing that?  Well last night directly in front of us was not one, not two, but three guys with a sticker on.  Brutal.

Ladies and gents, The Sticker Brothers:

The Sticker Bros

Finally, a few fans of the game from the standing room only CF zone.  Note that the description I used to describe the CF zone: standing room only.  There is no sitting here.  If you truly want to sit, go back to your seat that you purchased.  Apparently that concept was lost on a few last night, as these two classics decided to sit cross legged.  Not only does that take up more room at the front and prevent others from getting a leaning spot against the railing, you also look an idiot.

Here are The Sitters:

The Sitters

If anybody out there wants to nominate a fan of the game, feel free to drop me a line at fivehundredlevelfan@gmail.com.

500 Level Fan of the Game – August 11, 2015

IMG_1292 (2)

Another night another win for the red hot Jays.  Last night’s 4-2 win over Oakland was the ninth straight for the juggernaut and pushed Toronto to only 0.5 games back of New York for first.

It was a special night at the dome as the visit by the A’s marked the return of Brett Lawrie.  Lawrie was a bit of an enigma in Toronto.  He had a ton of talent and a ton of heart, but never quite lived up to expectations.  But he was still a fan favourite, with his reckless and passionate play, not to mention his Canadian passport.

When he came to bat for the first time he received a nice ovation, with most of the cheering coming courtesy of today’s 500 Level Fan of the Game.

There are many things wrong with that photo, but most obvious is the colouring of the jersey.  Fluorescent green?  Black and grey?  And, again – fluorescent green????

I overheard this fine gent saying things like “I just don’t know who to cheer for” and “I miss him.  I really miss him” when Brett came to the plate.

For that bizarre behaviour, and even worse jersey, it’s a no doubter for fan of the game.  Extra props for the grab of the bum too.

500 Level Fan of the Game – September 24, 2014

Kemper

It took me a while, but finally, on the final homestand of the 2014 Toronto Blue Jays season, 500 Level Fan has uncovered a 500 Level Fan of the Game!

There was an extremely sparse crowd on hand to take in what turned out to be the quickest game of the season – only 1:59 was needed for Mark Buehrle and Taijuan Walker to duel in 1-0 Jays win.

Though there weren’t many fans on hand, there was one fantastic gentleman sitting in front of us in section 532.  Clad in a personalized jersey, “Kemper” was heavily in tune to the game, watching intently as Buehrle was dealing on the mound.  Despite the dome being deathly quiet for most of the game, Kemper came equipped with bright red ear plugs – fascinating.

Kemper loved the Jays, but it became clear early on that he was not a huge fan of John Gibbons.

In the top of the third, Corey Hart led off with a fly ball down the right field line that dropped very close to the line and bounced out of play.  The ball was called fair by the first base umpire, giving Hart a leadoff double.  It was tough to tell if the ball was fair or foul from our seats, but that didn’t stop Kemper from laying into Gibbons for not challening the call right away.

“Come on Gibbons!  Get out there you bum!  You’re a bum Gibbons!  A bum!  Come on you turd!  Put down your beer and get out there!  You bum!”

Gibbons of course did challenge, and lost.  Classic.

Kemper delivered another gem in the ninth, after a leadoff walk put a Mariner on first base.  “Good thing that wasn’t a no hitter,” he said, nonsensically.

But by far the best part about Kemper was his reaction to each Buehrle strikeout.  As soon as strike three was delivered, he would sweep his arm forward, flick his wrist, and wave goodbye to the strikeout victim.  It was our lucky night that Buehrle and Sanchez combined for 11 Ks, which meant we were treated to 11 goodbye waves!

Thanks Kemper, for the wonderful memories!

 

500 Level Fan of the Game – June 21, 2013

Wow! Wowowowowowowow!!!!

What a game! There was a massive Encarnacion home run, a huge Chris Davis 3-run bomb, the first career home run by Munenori Kawasaki, and a walk-off win to extend the winning streak to nine.

I have been to great games before, but Friday night’s game was one of the best – if not the best – that I have ever experienced live. The weather was beautiful, the roof was open, and the drama was high.

The best part of the game by far, however, was the crowd. There has been a lot written about Jays fans this year – they have been aggressive, poorly behaved, awful. But last night was amazing. The atmosphere was electric. There was a buzz in the air the entire game, and after Kawasaki’s bomb, the place went nuts. Chants of “Kawasaki!” were probably the loudest I have ever heard when he came to the plate in the 9th.

As

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you may expect, in a game of that nature there are bound to be some classic fans. Check out some shots below. My personal favourite – by far – is Kawasaki man (the incorrect spelling makes it that much better)!

Just….the best!

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There are also two great vine posts here and here from @JPS_82.

500 Level Fan of the Game – June 19th, 2013

A special treat today!

Not one – not two – but three fans of the game!

The first two are a pair of pals from section 532. After doing some meticulous research over at Baseball Reference, I was able to find out that Billy Koch, ex-Blue Jay, put up a career WAR of 5.5 in three seasons with Toronto, two with the White Sox, and one each with Oakland and Florida. In fact, in 2002 with the A’s, Koch saved 44 games and finished 18th in AL MVP voting!

However, I was unable to find any career

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statistics for Dr Scoops…

drscoops

And last but not least, comes Angry Bearded Guy. Sitting behind home plate, this guy was not too happy when Edwin Encarnacion was beaned last night in the bottom of the seventh.

In fact, he was

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more than not happy. He was irate. He was downright furious. And he was going to explode.

AngryBeardedGuy

Check out the Blue Jay Hunter’s animated GIF below. The best!!!!

 

500 Level Fan of the Game – Petco Park Edition

A very good friend of mine (and a friend of the site!) recently took a trip to San Diego. Judging by his Twitter feed ( @noddini – check it out, though don’t get angry at his non-belief in Rasmus!), it looks he had an excellent time, and only fuelled my desire to check out San Diego even more.

@noddini is a beer enthusiast, and as any beer enthusiast would, he checked out a lot of craft breweries on his visit. He is also a baseball fan, and as any baseball fan would, he decided to take in a game at beautiful Petco Park. As a beer enthusiast AND a baseball fan, he was thrilled with the beer selection inside the stadium (the dome is gettimg better, but nowhere near as good as this):

SD Beers

And most importantly, as a loyal reader of 500 Level Fan, he had his eye open for a Petco Park version of the 500 Level Fan of the Game. Luckily for all, he found a good one.

Thanks @noddini!

**************

May 20th 2013 – Cardinals v Padres.

While visiting San Diego last week I had the opportunity to take in a ball game at Petco park. My first live National League game. Let me just get this out of the way first – Petco park is amazing. By far it is the greatest ball park I have visited. (note: I have

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not yet been to PNC park or AT&T park). Petco has it all – open air concourses, multiple and I mean multiple places to purchase amazing local craft beer, concessions ranging from authentic BBQ to fish shacks, and a real sand beach in the outfield.

Petco

I bought myself a nice ticket in the “Toyota Terrace” which would be similar to the 200 level in the Dome. Also as an aside the fans at Petco park know how to watch baseball and know when to cheer when their Padres were down in the score. There were no idiots trying to start “the wave” and there were no idiots booing at pick-off attempts or other routine baseball plays.

 

Attendance for the game wasn’t great (announced attendance was 18,700) and I was amazed that there were at least as many Cardinals fans as Padres fans. It was like when the Red Sox or Yankees visit the Dome – there were that many Cardinals fans.

While my section was mostly filled with Padres fans there was one Cardinals fan that stood out. “Curly” was sitting all by himself.

Curly

His hair was amazing. The man never moved all game – he sat stoically – clearly watching his beloved Cardinals. The headphones never came off and “Curly” seemed fixated at the action on field. “Curly” never even ordered any concessions. Sadly his beloved Cardinals lost to the home squad 4-2. After the game I watched him gather his belongings and leave slowly keeping the headphones on as if to shield himself from the cries of the victors.

500 Level Fan of the Game – May 2, 2013

Well friends. There’s not much left to say at this point. The “it’s early” excuse can’t really be applied any longer. At 10-19, dead last in the AL East, 10.5 games back of first, and better than only the woeful Houston Astros, it might be time to consider the fact that the Jays just aren’t as good as we hoped they’d be.

Are they still talented? Yes. Can they turn it around? Certainly. Can things get any worse? I don’t think so.

But are they still a shoo-in for the playoffs? No. Are we still guaranteed

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meaningful games in September? Maybe…but maybe not.

Have no fear though.

Because 500 Level Fan is here to cheer you up on a Friday with 2013’s first installment of the Fan of the Game series!

For those of you new to the site, the 500 Level Fan of the Game is reserved for extraordinary fans – and by extraordinary I don’t really mean “great” – I mean “strange”. In the past we’ve seen a grown man licking a cooked chicken breast, a large man that resembled children’s cartoon character Pingu, a Sam Crenshaw look-a-like, and a he/she wearing a gold outfit. Click on the “FLF of the Game” category to view the history.

Today we unveil a first – a personalized jersey! Any sports fan knows that personalizing jerseys is a faux pas. Putting one’s own last name on any team’s jersey is tacky, corny, and just plain wrong. Then there is a step below that – those who put slogans on a jersey. Think of Leafs jerseys with the number 67, and above that “Winless Since” where the name should be. Really? Like….really??

And then, thanks to @TweetsByRules, there is this from last night:

Killer 1

And to make things better – a moustache!!!

Killer 2

Incredible.

So take heart Jays fans. No matter how bad the product on the field might be, we’re in safe hands with a Killer in the crowd.

Feel free to send in any strange fans you see at a Jays game to fivehundredlevelfan@gmail.com.

500 Level Fan of the Spring

Everybody is excited about the opening of spring training.

But one fan in particular is far more pumped up than most.

500 Level Fan presents my nephew, 2-year old Levi Kuchler, fully engaged watching Brandon Morrow pitch to the Tigers in the first inning of the first pre-season game.

Great touch with the backwards cap and front row

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seat!

Spring Training Fan

 

500 Level Fan of the Argo’s Game!

Last Friday I made an increasingly rare appearance at a Toronto Argonauts CFL game.  Despite the loss, the game was actually quite entertaining, the beer was good, and our section had a wonderful late game visit from Pinball himself.

But nothing beat this jacket that we saw upon leaving the dome.

Ladies and gentlemen, may I present the 500 Level Fan of the Argo’s game:

500 Level Fan of the Wedding

On Saturday night I had the good fortune to attend the wedding of a very good friend.

He is the world’s biggest Frank Thomas fan, and in his younger days he looked like this:

A few hours into the dancing, portion of the evening, a few dozen drinks into the night, I happened to glance through the drunken haze surrounding the dance floor and see a young woman wearing these:

I don’t think I’ve ever seen anything better.

Congratulations on the nuptials @JPS_82 and @bextwit!