At 3:15P I got a call from a friend asking me if I wanted to go to the Giants/Indians game. I rarely turn down an opportunity to see baseball at the park, but this meant I'd be wearing an Athletics jersey to a Giants game.
So what happened?
Well I had time to find some pants but I didn't have time to go home and change my shirt and I'm not sure I would have if I could. So I met my friend to drive up wearing my official jersey and an As cap too. He chuckled a bit seeing my outfit and off we went to the game.
I had already considered the situation and figured I wouldn't be at risk of harm. The only big question in my mind would be how smug would I feel when no one noticed I was wearing a jersey from a player who had recently been sent down to AAA after a promising 2010.
I stopped by the Caltrain station to buy a ticket for the way home (I was sharing a ride up but not back) and on my way out of the station someone on the way to the park called to me "Let's Go Oakland". I couldn't tell if he was facetious or not but I responded "Go As". After I walked by another person in his group saw the back of my jersey, he says "Daric Barton, Sacramento Athletics". This surprised me a lot, so I stopped and chatted real quick. We talked about Barton and the As and how Barton was a Rivercat now. He knew the name of the team, just was making a joke with his Sacramento Rivercats comment. I mentioned that unfortunately, Daric hadn't even played in Sacramento yet and I hoped that there wasn't anything going wrong and that he would report when the next home stand started.
As I walked to the game further another fan engaged me as we waited to cross the street, mentioning my Barton jersey and how he was in AAA now. A 3rd fan also stopped me outside to talk about the As, although he didn't didn't know about Barton. However, this was not before I finally ran into the jerk fan I was expecting all along.
This fan was more drunk and in a group of other people. He asks me "Why are you wearing an As uniform?" and I answer simply "Why not?" He then proceeds to give me crap about the As being losers, the GIants being Series champions and various other stupid stuff. He didn't actually seem to by trying to start a fight, but he was a useless jerk. I just gave him a thumbs up and proceeded to ignore him until he stopped being interested in needling me.
It was good game, I had come in late and the Giants were down 2-0 before I sat down. I rooted for the Giants as I don't dislike the NL and I have no love for the Indians. The Giants engineered a late game comeback and the crowd was thrilled. The Giants hit better than the As do, but not a lot better. They didn't play defense all that well and my friend said you had to have some patience with them. It was weird to see a team making mistakes like the As do, but without the excuse of "well, half the players on the field were Rivercats in April". Sandoval in particular made an egregious running error advancing to 2nd on his shallow right field hit. He was tagged for the 3rd out between 1st and 2nd before the runner who had started at 2nd could score. He probably saved the runner from being chewed out too because he shouldn't have gone home, he wouldn't had made it if Sandoval hadn't drawn the throw to 2nd (the right fielder was not Choo, he had been beaned earlier and left the game).
I'm of pretty hardy stock and so didn't have a jacket on over my jersey until the 8th inning. No one in the stands said anything nasty to me, no one "accidentally" spilled a beer on my jersey. My friend said he was glad to be with someone who liked baseball enough to wear a jersey to a game even if it wasn't a Giants jersey and in fact that's why he called me in the first place.
On the train ride home just before I got off a large man asks me if the Athletics won today too. I said nope, Moscoso had pitched well but Fuentes lost it in the 9th. He said "try to avoid sharp objects" to me as I stepped off the train. I couldn't tell if that was some kind of bizarre threat or if he really was trying to wish me well.
So I learned some things. First, always have pants and a jacket in the trunk in case you need to go to a Giants game. Second, dammit that's a great park, if you didn't like the game you could watch the sailboats on the bat.
Finally, it turns out As fans don't have a exclusive on baseball fandom in the Bay Area. Yeah, there were a lot of lousy fans there. I even saw 4 women who could be described as nothing other than "Giants bimbos" who spent most of their time out of their seats or texting and generally showing themselves off. But if you're going to assume everyone you see wearing a Giants shirt or at a Giants game isn't a real baseball fan you're going to be wrong some of the time.
Can we have our good stadium now? It'd be nice to have our own "fair weather" fans to help us make payroll to field a better team.