CHS Field is always a blast to visit, a true baseball temple if there ever was one. And maybe it's the sense of humour that permeates their game productions.
This season I had the pleasure to meet Mark Hamburger, Tony Thomas and Alonzo Harris more than a few times, and their contiguous enthusiasm for the game--and refusal to take themselves too seriously before and after the game--have made them three of my all-time favourites to photograph.
Tony and Alonzo are a couple of characters, I swear they should have their own buddy cop show...they never resist a chance to mug for the camera.
Family were a big part of the home run derby, here's a shot of Alonzo's pops and Tony Thomas taking in the action.
Alonzo has a sick bat and he put it to good use in the HR derby; he ended up coming in second on the night, even though he did a round with a Go-Pro strapped to his head.
He kept it up the next night at the actual game...
And Tony Thomas and Mark Hamburger represented the Saints in fine form as well.
Angelo Songco was there too; alas, he was had sustained a shoulder injury prior to the game and was unable to complete.
I suppose I should mention George Tsamis, the Saints manager. He's one of the best. The North's dugout was crawling with photographers, so at one point in the game I tried to crouch on the steps near his usual roost in the dugout. Under normal game circumstances, unthinkable...but this was a bit different.
He was going to shoo me away from the steps, but then asked: "are you going to shoot all the players?" i.e. not just Goldeyes.
"Yes, for sure."
"Then you can stay."
So, belatedly, thanks for letting me stick around, George. You're all right in my books.