I have been coming to Maine (from Massachusetts) in the summer for many years. I knew about the Portland Sea Dogs but never got to see a game until June 4th. They are the Red Sox’s AA team.
I was there to do an interview with Todd Jamison for The Town Common. Todd fills numerous management roles with the Sea Dogs and his hometown is Newburyport.
The Sea Dogs media director, Chris Cameron, was extremely helpful. He found for me the connection that Todd had with The Town Common readership and set up the interview. He also gave me a press pass that enabled me to be out on Hadlock Field before the noon game with the Binghamton Mets and get some pictures.
I suspect that I could have talked with players before and/or after the game but I wasn’t really prepared to do that. Maybe another time.
In interviewing Todd I got tuned in to some of the prospects on the Portland roster and when I had my time on the field – I walked around the exterior of the park a couple of times – I took some pictures.
One player who had recently moved up to the Sea Dogs from Salem (A) was Ryan Kalish. He’s a 21-year-old outfielder who is listed as the #8 Red Sox prospect. Before the game it was announced that he would be sitting at a table signing autographs under the bleachers so, as I had done at Wilmington, I went and got his picture.
One player I watched work out a lot was Junichi Tazawa. He is a 23-year-old starting pitcher who is Boston’s #5 prospect. He has won seven games so far with a nice 2.67 ERA. He isn’t that big – 5’11” – 180 pounds.
The team trainer, also Japanese, translates for Junichi. I asked the trainer how Junichi was doing with English and he said, “He is learning it very slowly.”
I was keenest on picturing #1 prospect, Lars Anderson. Todd told me that he was the #1 first base prospect in the minors. Lars is a 21-year-old first baseman. He’s 6’4” – 215 pounds.
I wasn’t sure which one he was before the game because the team had red shirts on with no names. When they came out just before the game they wore whites with names on the back. It was then that I figured out which one was Lars Anderson. After that, I took a number of pictures of him. In one he’s hitting the ball. In the other he’s wearing sunglasses.
I am very grateful to the Portland Sea Dogs for making things work for me. I had a memorable time.