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Biggest Thrills of our Visitors

What is your biggest baseball thrill -- or your lowest low?  Let us know and maybe your submission will be included in this section. There is some real magic in these submissions -- Mickey Mantle, Joe DiMaggio, Nolan Ryan no-hitters, Stan Musial's farewell and much, much more!  The author of each is represented by their e-mail address, minus the domain (nasty bots search through websites looking for addresses to add to their spam lists, and I'm not going to contribute to this evil practice by showing full e-mail addresses). By the way, the ones submitted the most recently are at the top.

Written by:  "danielh41"

I took my two sons and my nephew to a Rangers-Yankees game on May 1, 2007.  The Yankees pitcher, Phil Hughes, took a no-hitter into the 7th, and I think he would have finished it if he hadn't pulled his hamstring.  He left the game, and the Yankees bullpen wound up giving up a run and a couple of hits, but the Yankees still won 10-1.  But my four year old, Elijah, spent most of the game talking to a young couple sitting in the row in front of us (Elijah is not shy).  In the 9th inning, Derek Jeter hit a foul ball into our section, and the young man in front of us managed to get the ball.  He took a look at it, turned around, and gave it to Elijah.  So my four year old has a Major League Baseball game ball even though I don't (after I don't know how many games attended).  I guess it pays to be outgoing...

Here are other top thrills of mine:

May 1, 1991 at Arlington Stadium.  Nolan Ryan, then 44 years old, took the mound against the Toronto Blue Jays and turned in the most amazing pitching performance I have ever seen.  He threw the Major League record seventh no-hitter of his amazing career, striking out 16 and only walking two.  The last four innings were just edge-of-your-seat suspense like I have never experienced before.  When he struck out Roberto Alomar to end the game, pure joy erupted at the old stadium.

April 26, 1995 at Coors Field.  The Rockies and Mets played the very first game ever played at the wonderful new Coors Field.  About five inches of snow had fallen earlier that day, and I was worried that the game might be postponed.  This concerned me a great deal since I didn't have tickets for the next day.  But the snow stopped, although the temperature only rose to about 39 degrees by game time.  The Rockies fell behind by one in the ninth, then rallied to tie it in the bottom of the ninth.  They fell behind by one again in the 13th, but managed to tie the score again in the bottom of that inning.  The Mets scored another run in the top of the 14th.  Dante Bichette of the Rockies then hit a walk-off three-run homer in the bottom of the 14th to give the Rockies an 11-9 victory in the new ballpark.

April 5, 1993 at Shea Stadium.  The brand new Rockies played the very first game of their existence on the road against the Mets.  I happened to be living in New York at the time, so I got to see this one.  Unfortunately, Dwight Gooden pitched a four hit shutout, but I have been a Rockies fan ever since, literally from day one.

August 22, 1989 at Arlington Stadium.  Nolan Ryan struck out Rickey Henderson to become the first pitcher with 5000 career strikeouts.  He finshed with 13 Ks for the game, but Oakland won 2-0 as Bob Welch and Dennis Eckersley combined for a shutout of the Rangers.

March 31, 1998 at Bankone Ballpark.  My Rockies were playing the Arizona Diamondbacks in their very first game ever.  I flew out to Phoenix to see the Rox beat the new team 9-2.  This was also the very first game ever played at the Bankone Ballpark, and the pre-game festivities included a spectacular roof-opening ceremony.  This was the second time I had seen a new team play in its very first game and the third time that I had been to the first game ever played in a new Major League ballpark.

Written by:  "ken"

I really don't know where to start talking about my Biggest Thrills except with the Kingdome.  Many people hated the Dome, I loved it!  While it may not have been the best venue for baseball, it certainly was great for a kid that loved the game.  I saw my first MLB game there in 1977, vs the Yankees from the upperdeck,  when I was just 4 years old. Through the years I was able to witness some great games there, like: Gaylord Perry's 300th victory, Phil Bradley's walk-off grandslam vs the Twins, the M's clinching their first AL West title in a 1-game playoff with the Angels on October 2, 1995, the 1995 AL Division Series vs the Yankees with that amazing comeback after being down 2 games to none. The final game of the series where the M's eliminated the Yankees was also Don Mattingly's final game, and I was there.  But what I will remember the most about the Kingdome is the final baseball game there on June 27, 1999 vs the Texas Rangers.  It was the grandson of Diego Segui, who threw the first pitch in Mariner history on April 6, 1977, who threw the switch to shut the lights off for the last time at the Kingdome, marking the official end to the Mariners' history there

Written by:  "len001"

I became a Dodgers fan in 1976 while watching a Dodgers game on TV when I learned that Steve Yeager was the first catcher to wear the neck protector. Steve Yeager became my favorite player as a result. I became more of a Dodgers fan as they got to the World Series in '77 and '78 and than finally winning in '81 with my boy Steve Yeager winning the Series MVP award. Well, I'm from Detroit and in 1985 my dad decided to take me an my brother to Cincinnati to see the Reds play the Dodgers. We had planned this all year so as the game got closer I got more and more excited. Then unexpectedly two weeks before the game my dad came home from work and told me he had bad news. He told me Steve Yeager had broken his arm and wouldn't be playing in the games against the Reds. I was heartbroken. I went to my room almost crying and decided I didn't want to go to Cincinnati at all. My dad came into the room and after half an hour or so convinced me that I was a Dodgers fan and could still see my team and they needed me to cheer them on.

So when we arrived in Cincinnati, we first went to a restaurant named L'umbrella's.  I get restless easily so while waiting for our order I started looking around.  I looked over my left shoulder and not more than 10 feet away was Tommy Lasorda. I went into a panic. I turned around and announced to my table that that was Lasorda right over there. My dad and brother couldn't believe it. My brother was in denial at my luck. I decided to see who else was behind me so I looked back to see that Rick Monday was there, too. I loved Rick Monday from his classic home run against the MontrealExpos in the 1981 playoffs sending the Dodgers to the World Series.

I was in total disbelief by now.  I then turned and looked over my right shoulder.  Sitting at the very next table behind me and to the right was Steve Yeager wearing his cast. I ended up getting autographs from all of them.

Written by:  "mwadsworth"

For my 15th birthday, I decided that I would take a shot in the dark and ask my Dad if we could fly out to the All Star game in Seattle.  He surprised me, and we did.  We arrived at Safeco Field and walked around until the game started.  As Cal Ripken, Jr. walked up to the plate, in his final All Star game, we decided to get up and stand in center field, on the large staircase.  After about a 3 minute ovation, Cal Ripken stepped up, a million flashes going off, and went yard.  My goose bumps didn't go away for a couple of innings.  It was incredible.

Written by:  "AlphonseDattolo"

I have been a Phillies fan for 42 years and I had the honor of attending the last game at Connie Mack Stadium on Thursday, October 1, 1970 when my Phillies beat the Expos 2-1 (I proudly own a red box seat taken from Connie Mack Stadium that night).  Oscar Gamble singled in Tim McCarver to win it for the Phillies.  I also attended the first game in Veterans Stadium history when I saw my Phillies and Jim Bunning beat Montreal 4-1.

Written by:  "Chris.Cantor"

There are two moments I'll never forget. The first was Game #5 of the 1981 World Series. I was with my Dad and we're both huge Dodger fans. Goose Gossage beaned Ron Cey in the helmet, knocking him out cold. As an 11 year old kid, that was an amazing site to see. The Dodgers beat the Yankees that day, 2-1, on two home runs (both solo shots) -- one by Pedro Guerrero, the other by Steve Yeager. It was the last time the Dodgers and Yankees met in the World Series.

My second most memorable game was Game #5 of the 1986 American League Championship. Red Sox vs. Angels. I went with a high-school friend and his family and we had seats in the lower deck, just beyond the left field fence. The crowd was going absolutely nuts as Donnie Moore prepared to deliver his third strike to Dave Henderson, sending the Angels to the World Series for the first time in their history. Unfortunately, as most will recall, it was not to be. Dave Henderson hit Moore's fastball (a good pitcher's pitch, down in the zone) over the left field fence, landing just a couple of rows in front of us. For the rest of the inning, you could hear every pitch hit the catcher's mitt. Although the Angels rallied and the game went into extra innings, you could feel the momentum sway. That was the most depressed I've ever been leaving a ball game. But as I've gotten older, I've realized that those moments make the game of baseball the best game in the world. No clock and no ties. Someone will always win. I just wish it could've been my Angels.

I asked my Dad what his most memorable game was and he said he was at Dodger Stadium when Rick Monday saved the American flag from being burned by two idiotic, non-patriotic men. He'd also seen Koufax and Drysdale pitch ... which to me would have been incredible.

Written by:  "RSchei01"

I am a lifelong Phillies fan, and I attended at least one game a year at the Vet going back to when I was not even a year old in 1984. In fact, I was born on the same night that Steve Carlton was pitching against the Baltimore Orioles in the World Series (October 14, 1983). I have seen the Phillies in almost every city that they have traveled to. Just this year, I have seen them in Miami and Cleveland, which is a treat in itself. But my greatest thrill was seeing the 500th homerun of Mike Schmidt, which he hit in Pittsburgh. That was an amazing scene.

Written by:  "bdlconsult"

Today was Opening Day for the Dodgers and even though we lost 9 - 2, you can't beat the hopeful feeling of an Opening Day. I have so many fond memories of Dodger Stadium - it's truly one of the most magical places in the world. Listening to Vin Scully on the radio, eating a Dodger Dog, and being with friends and family are all what a Dodger Stadium experience means to me. I've been at Dodger Stadium for several thrilling experiences -- I watched Jerry Russ throw a no-hitter in 1992 (AMAZING!), I saw Mike Piazza hit a ball OUT of Dodger Stadium (only one of three players to do it -- the others were Mark McGuire and Dave Parker). Even if nothing spectacular happens, it's still the best place in the world to be. Thanks for allowing me to share my Dodger Stadium memories.

Written by:  "pcalv"

Being from Australia makes it tough to get to a major league game. I have managed to attend over 150 games since 1991. My favorite games so far would be:

1. My first game.  Oakland A's at California Angels in August 1991.

2. My first visit to Wrigley Field(1993). The Cubs played the Rockies with Colorado finally winning 14-13 in 11 digs despite Sammy Sosa hitting a 3 run HR to tie the game in the 9th and a 2 run HR to make it 14-13 in the 11th.

3. Orlando Cubs vs. Carolina Mudcats, Tinker Field (1993). Matt Franco hits a game winning HR in the bottom of the 11th.

4. Cincinnati Reds at Chicago Cubs (1999): Greg Vaughn hits 3 home runs for the Reds.

5. Arizona Diamondbacks at San Francisco Giants, The Stick (1998). Barry Bonds is intentionally walked with the bases loaded in the bottom of the 9th and the Snakes ahead 8-6. Now that's what I call respect.

Written by:  "rohrbar"

I visited the "Biggest Ballpark Thrills" page, and it got me to thinking.  I thought I'd throw my three in the mix.  Actually, two have already happened, and the other will happen, this spring.  Here they are, in no particular order...

1. My first game at Wrigley - Like any kid that's my age, I grew up turning on the TV during summer vacation and seeing beautiful Wrigley Field nearly every other day.  I wasn't so sure that I would see a game there.  On the two days we spent on the way out toward Chicago, it rained so much, I thought we'd have to build an ark.  The rain held up until about two hours before the first pitch.  Luckily, it was merely a couple of sprinkles, so it didn't hold up the game.  The best part was, just as my dad and I were settling into our seats, the organist played "There Is No Place Like Nebraska" (we live in Nebraska, you see).  It was nice touch to the day, a dream day, although Sammy Sosa went 0-4 with two meek pop outs to center and two strikeouts.

2. My first game at Haymarket Park in Lincoln, Nebraska - I had waited for this day for two years.  My first game at the Haymarket, taking in a game between the Saltdogs and the Winnipeg Goldeyes.  The ballpark was twice as good as I thought it would be.  It was a dream yard, with Memorial Stadium in clear view in dead center, the skyline in clear view in right, and the Sower on top of the State Capitol, presiding over the game in right.  Plus, I got my first ball from any game, when a Goldeye outfielder was nice enough to toss a ball to me during BP. 

And now, the one that hasn't happened yet, but will . . .

3. My first University of Nebraska baseball game at Haymarket Park - I preface this by describing the previous home of the Huskers, Buck Beltzer Field.  The place was an American Legion Park with a good sound system.  The press box was a corrugated metal shed sitting on top of aluminum bleachers, like what you would find at your average youth league game, except that they had backs.  Haymarket Park takes the Huskers from one of the worst ballparks in college baseball to one of the best. (See above description).  I highly suggest to anyone who will be in the Lincoln area to try and catch a game at Haymarket.  It is one the finest facilities in minor league and college baseball.  That is, catch a game if you can find tickets!

Written by:  "scchristian"

I have been a baseball fan since I was 8 years old.  I used to live near Chicago and have been to both Wrigley and old Comiskey Park.  My dad took me to old Comiskey when I was 9 for my first major league game.  It was in 1959 and it was just great.  I remember walking down the corridor and seeing my hero Luis Aparicio.  I did not care about an autograph.  I just wanted to meet him.  I ran up to him and he got down on one knee and talked with me for about 10 minutes,  Unfortunately you don't see that happening any more.  It was certainly the biggest thrill I have ever had.

Written by:  "gaylonk"

Here are my top baseball memories: Game 5, 1986 ALCS, Bos @ Cal...the Angels were a strike away from winning the pennant...That was an incredible time...I was in the Navy then and some buddies and I drove up for the game, including one who was attending his first major league game ever!!!... Game 5, 1984 NLCS...Chi @ SD...I took my brother who is a big Padres fan and he enjoyed watching his team win the pennant...My first post-season game

April 13, 1987, San Diego Jack Murphy Stadium...The Padres become the first and so far only team to lead off a game with three consecutive home runs...Marvel Wynne, Tony Gwynn and John Kruk do the honors of off San Francisco...Steve Garvey flew out to center to end the streak...It was the Padres home opener that night, too...

I have a lot of memories of the Murph from when I lived in San Diego...I saw Glenn Davis hit three straight home runs before grounding out in his last at bat and saw Tom Browning pitch 8 and 1/3 hitless inning before giving up a hit to Gwynn...I was also there when the Giants won the NL West one year...

July 19, 1987, Arlington Stadium, NY @ Tex...With a home run in this game, Don Mattingly would have broken the record for most consecutive games hitting a home run...He came close once, but didn't make it...Still a great time.

Written by:  "mrwcf"

My mother is responsible for my love of baseball, as she was the one who got me interested in the game in 1957.  She had been going to St. Louis Cardinals and St. Louis Browns games since 1936.  In the summer of 1963, Stan Musial announced he would retire at the end of the season.  My mother suggested we get tickets so we could attend his last game.

When September 29, 1963 arrived, it was sunny but cool, which is common in late September in St. Louis.  Musial rode around the Stadium in a convertible waving to the fans.  I don't think there was a dry eye in the park during the pre-game ceremonies.

Stan stuck out his first at bat.  A representative of the Hall of Fame was at the game and after every pitch Musial had to take the ball to him.  No wonder he struck out!  How could he concentrate having to take each ball to the Hall of Fame representative?  His second and third times at bat he singled.  His final one drove in a run.  The final single also bounced past a rookie second baseman of the Cincinnati Reds named Pete Rose.  After the second hit Manager Johnny Keane sent in Gary Kolb to run for Musial figuring this was the best time to get him out of the game.

A little over a year later on Oct. 13 and 14, 1964, I was at another game with my mother. After the remarkable collapse by the Phillies in the final two weeks of the season, St. Louis was in its first World Series in 18 years. When I got home from school on October 13, I quickly changed clothes and my mother took me to pick up some friends and we headed for Busch Stadium to wait overnight in line for Game #6 of the World Series.  My High School had about 400 students.  Students were excused if they brought in a World Series ticket.  I heard there were fewer than 100 students in school on Oct. 14.

That World Series game wasn't good for Cardinal fans.  The Bronx Bombers lived up to their name and pounded the Cardinals.  Mantle and Maris hit back-to-back home runs and the Cardinal lost. But is was a wonderful memory sitting in the bleachers of Old Busch Stadium with my girl friend and my mother.

The final game I took my mother to was Wednesday, July 1, 1998.  By this time my mother was in a wheel chair.  She thought her days of going to ball games were over when the doctor put her in a wheel chair, but I showed her otherwise by buying wheel-chair-section tickets and pushing her chair up the ramps at the stadium. The Kansas City Royals beat the Cardinals that day. 

This game was memorable because just four weeks later on July 28, 1998 my mother died at the age of 75.  Her obituary ends with "She was an avid Cardinal fan." She was buried with her Cardinals hat in her casket and we sang "Take Me Out to The Ballgame" at her funeral.  Every time we sing that song at a ballgame I think of my mother.

Written by:  "at783"

Memorial Stadium, Boise, Idaho:  An outstanding presentation of baseball.  Right from the computer-diagram ticket sales to the diligent uniformed usherettes to the major-league-standard groundskeeping, a very professional operation.  No mascot.  No between-inning kiddie stunts.  Very tasteful jazz between innings, instead of YMCA over and over, and subdued so conversation remains possible.  No Day-Oh's between pitches.  Just baseball, baseball, baseball.  What a relief!

Written by:  "RDT444"

This happened to me in 1984 at the Kingdome in Seattle. My best friend's girlfriend worked in the Mariner's front office. George Argyos' secretary. My friend called me and invited me to a game against the Tigers. Janet had wrangled a luxury suite for the game. I invited the woman I was dating at the time. We had only gone out twice before. I went to the game dressed in a sports coat, dress shirt, loafers and jeans. Right before the game started, George Argyos stuck his head in the suite and handed us all Mariners hats (the real ones) and told us that whatever we wanted, it was on him! Well, that was back in the day when I had never met a beer I didn't like. We had the drink cart parked outside the door the whole game. Mariners snapped the Tigers then-record setting road streak and a good time was had by all.

Now the fun began. We overstayed our welcome in the suite and they finally came and kicked us out about an hour after the game was over. We rode the elevator to ground level only to find the Kingdome locked up tight.  We wandered around trying to find a way out. A guard directed us to the only door left open. It was the players' exit. I was the last one of our group through the gate. Now remember how I was dressed. A little kid sticks
out a program and a pen and asked for my autograph! I asked him his name and signed his program "Best wishes, Bobby. Your friend, Richard Taylor" I was chuckling as I walked away. I heard his friend say "Who is it?"

"IT'S RICHARD TAYLOR!" The second kid came running. 

"Mr. Taylor, can I have your autograph?" 

"Sure, kid." And I signed. Now the crowd sees this and literally pushes me into a corner and started handing me everything imaginable to sign!
I am scribbling my name like crazy and look up to see my friend and his girlfriend laughing like crazy. My date, who hardly knows me, is slack-jawed and staring. Who is this guy? she is obviously thinking.  The signing goes on for about 10 minutes when I announced that I had to go. The crowd booed me for leaving!!!

The funniest part was the 30-something dad with his 8 year old son. The kid says "Do you play for Detroit"? and before I could say "No, I'm a salesman for a carpet mill," his dad winks at me and says "Don't be silly, son ."

I about lost it!! My 15 minutes of fame!!

Written by:  "d.assad"

One of my biggest ballpark thrills was the Father's Day Weekend 2001 sweep by the Pirates over the hated Indians.

I went to all three games to support the Bucs at beautiful PNC Park, going with three different groups of people and sitting in three different parts of the park.  The weather was perfect and the fan atmosphere was great, especially the final 1-0 game won by the Bucs when Brian Giles scored all the way from first base on a base hit that died in left-center field.  And for a change, very few Pirates fans left the game before the final pitch.  The 10,000 Indians fans at the game -- out of the total sell-out crowd of 37,000 -- went home heartbroken. 

My other big ballpark thrill was taking my then-9-year-old son to Buffalo's Pilot Field for a game on May 16, 1992.  My son got to walk on a professional grass field and also visit the clubhouse briefly two hours before the game.  Buffalo played the Denver Zephyrs.  I think Buffalo won the game and my son got an autograph ball given to him by John Wehner.  Buffalo was a Class AAA Pirates farm team that year.

Written by:  "bandgeek"

August 4, 1999 at Safeco Field, Seattle, WA:  One of my favorite ballpark memories was when I first saw a Mariners game outside that ugly Kingdome.  It took me a couple of innings to realize that we were outdoors . . . yet they were wearing their home white uniforms (I wasn't used to this yet).  While they did lose, that was the first time I had ever seen a major league game outdoors.

Written by:  "maclandmag"

Since I'm a die-hard A's fan, and a relatively young one at that (17), my experiences are somewhat recent and all at the Network Associates Coliseum (which isn't all that much to look at, but has quite a few redeeming qualities still). Here's my #1 moment:  

October 1, 2000: The A's were at home for their season finale and hoping to clinch a division title in the wildest playoff chase in recent memory. A huge crowd was on hand -- well over 45,000. I was stuck in the third deck (not Mt. Davis but the old part). The game was a real pitchers duel, with a tension built up in the crowd. Tim Hudson was lights-out for the A's all afternoon. The A's pulled ahead in the seventh on a single that drove in one run, then put it away (if that's at all possible in the AL) in the 8th with home runs by Randy Velarde and DH Olmedo Saenz. The stage was set for the top of the ninth. The A's brought in their closer Jason Isrighausen from the bullpen. After one out, Isringhausen allowed two Rangers reach base, then forced the batter to pop out. It came down to Frank Catolantto with two away. After a ball, Isringhausen came back to strike him out with a curveball that danced across the plate for strike three. The entire stadium burst into cheers. 

And my least favorite? Eckersly vs. Kirk Gibson in 1988. Enough said.

Written by:  "izett"

For me, and I think for most true baseball fans, one of the most memorable experiences of my life was my first Major League Baseball game.  At twelve years old I had hounded my parents all year long to take me to a Giants game.  I wanted to see my favorite players (Willie, Willie, Juan and Orlando).  Finally my Uncle Carl, a true fan, and my father, piled me into the car and drove to Candlestick, a two hour drive.  My heart was racing the minute I saw the light towers from the freeway.  After purchasing tickets and finding our section, my Uncle led us through the tunnel, into the sunlight.  Below was a green field beyond anything my young childhood imagination could have created.  The only thing more mesmerizing than the green field was the fact that Willie Mays was standing in the outfield, and Willie McCovey was hitting long balls out of the batting cage.  Nothing before or since as ever equaled that moment.  The day was perfect, Willie Mays made a great catch going away in left-center, and Juan Marichal beat Warren Spahn in a pitching duel.  That was 1962.  

Written by: "jimwh"

Here are my top ten in chronological order.
1.  THE FIRST GAME:  I was six.  Mom took me to see the White Sox beat the Orioles 3-1 in old Comiskey.  It was 1956.

2.  TED WILLIAMS:  It was probably 1960.  I remember him coming to the plate at Comiskey, and the scoreboard flashed a sign congratulating him on 503 career HRs. Then he hit what looked like 504, but Jim Landis crashed into the CF wall and caught it. 

3.  NELLIE FOX NIGHT:  Nellie was my hero, and I was there at Comiskey for Nellie Fox Night.  Probably 1961 or 62.

4.  SANDY KOUFAX:  Fast forward to June 22, 1966, and I've moved to Houston.  I saw Koufax, at the peak of his game beat the Astros before a then-record Astrodome crowd.  It was mom's last game--she died a year later. 

5.  MICKEY MANTLE vs. SOME NEW KID:  All Star Game, 1968 at the Dome.  Mantle, near retirement, came up to pinch hit late in the game to a roaring ovation.  But some new kid I'd never heard of struck him out on four pitches.  Kid named Seaver. 

6.  SPRING TRAINING:  I took my firstborn child, Sarah, to spring training with me in 1987, when she was 11. She's not much of a fan, but the one game she really got into was at Chain O' Lakes Park, in Winter Haven.  Great day, great seats, and my little girl began to understand why I love this game so much.

7.  YANKEE STADIUM.  I hate the Yankees, but love Yankee Stadium. My first trip to the great shrine of baseball was on July 17, 1990, in the midst of a nine-game bus trip with my ten-year-old son, who has turned out to be the true fan in the family.  We saw Bo Jackson hit 3 HRs and Deion Sanders hit an inside the park job.  Pretty good for a couple of football players. 

8.  SEEING THE ASTROS WIN A CHAMPIONSHIP:  October 3, 1999.  Last regular season game in the Dome, with Enron Field about to open.  I saw my 'Stros beat LA to wrap up the Central Division for the third year in a row.  I had never before been present when "my team" won a championship of any kind. 

9.  BASEBALL COMES TO CENTRAL TEXAS!  April 16, 2000.  Professional baseball comes to Central Texas at last as the Round Rock Express play their first game at the Dell Diamond--soon to become my home away from home. 

10.  WE WIN  IT ALL!   September 15, 2000.  The Express cap an incredible year by winning the Texas League title at the Dell Diamond with an 8-4 win over Wichita.  I've been a fan of the White Sox and the Astros--two long suffering franchises.  To see "my team" win it all was a great thrill.

Joe's response: I also attended the games you list as #9 and #10 ... and, yes, they were both great experiences!

Written by:  "matlon1"

My  biggest ballpark thrill had to be on April 8, 1974, when my family and I witnessed Hank Aaron's 715th home run, breaking Babe Ruth's record at (as it was known at the time) Atlanta Stadium.  We had made plans during my school's Easter break.  We lived in Jacksonville, FL and had tickets for the Braves' first four home games.  I had a bad cold the week before, and I was still pretty sick.  My mother was really against my going, as it was a cold night, and it had rained most of the day.  My father said that if I went and got sicker and died, at least I would die happy if Hank hit the home run.  If I didn't go and Hank hit the home run, I would die anyway and kill them, too.  So my father won out (I was 13 at the time and didn't have a lot of say in the matter).  It was especially thrilling because Hank was my hero.  My grandfather was one of those who didn't want a black man breaking Babe's record.  I didn't care, as all I saw was a man in a Brave uniform trying to win baseball games.  And I am sure that hundreds of thousands of young men growing up in the South learned about how to cheer for a black man through Aaron.

Written by:  "falbanese_99"

My biggest baseball moments are as follows :

1.) June 16th 1997 at Yankee Stadium   The first regular season game between the Mets and Yankees.  World Series-like atmosphere in the middle of June.  The Mets won 6-0 behind a complete game by Dave Mlicki.  The Mets had beaten the defending World Champs, and I was interviewed outside the Stadium for EyeWitness News.

2.) June 25th 2000 at Shea Stadium    This was the first Met game I attended with my son.  At the time he was a little over a year old.  We watched Mike Hampton shutout the Pirates and got a free Tom Seaver bobble head doll.  My son and I have also attended several minor league games as well.  I caught him a foul ball over the summer in Nashua.

3.) October 6, 1991 at The Vet    Last game of the regular season.  I saw David Cone, then with the Mets, fan 19 Phillies.  Cone had tied the National League record for strikeouts in a game with that performance.

4.) October 17th, 1999 at Shea Stadium    The "Grand" Single.  Robin Ventura's game winning hit in the bottom of the 15th, in a driving rain to win
Game 5 of the 1999 NLCS.  The upper deck of Shea was actually moving up and down.

5.) October 8th 2000 at Shea Stadium    Bobby Jones one-hits the Giants to clinch the 2000 NLDS.  It was the closest I had ever come to seeing a
no-hitter.  (My father recalls taking me to Tom Seaver's "imperfect game," but I was too young to remember).

Written by:  "jras"

My favorite moment at the ballpark? Where to begin...uhm well seeing a skinny Yankee rookie named Deion Sanders crush a mammoth home run at Cleveland's old Municipal Stadium back in '90 was something to behold.  Or the Denver Zypher player (don't know his name) who crushed a shot that was worthy of Roy Hobb's status at one of the last games ever (1987) at Buffalo's War Memorial stadium.

But no...my favorite ballpark thrill occurred at Tiger Stadium (where else?) in late May of '90 when I witnessed Jack Morris give up a bunt single to the lead-off hitter of the KC Royals, and then proceed to retire the next 27 batters in a row. A performance worthy of Ernie Shore...without the Babe starting of course.

Written by:  "jmharper"

My greatest baseball thrills?  Here are a few specific games:

#1 was on June 11, 1990 at the Oakland Coliseum.  Nolan Ryan's no-hitter #6.  I remember my girlfriend being cold and wanting to leave in the 6th inning.  I refused to leave, and told her she would forgive me for keeping her there.  She wondered why the A's fans were cheering so loud against the A's!  The next day she told her co-workers where she was, and after THEY told her what she saw, she realized how cool it was.  

#2 was in May of 1979.  It was my freshman year at Northwestern University outside of Chicago.  My dorm neighbor caught me in the hall and asked if I wanted to go to the Cubs game.  I said I had a class.  He said "So do I, but I'm not going!"  The score was 7-6 after 1 inning, something like 10-9 after 2, and 21-9 Phillies after 5.  The Cubs rallied to tie it at 22, but Mike Schmidt broke the hearts of the Wrigley faithful with a home run in the 10th to win it 23-22.  45 runs, 75 hits, 10 home runs, and a completely unintelligible scorecard!  

#3 was in the 1988 World Series.  The second most famous home run of that series was the one Mark McGwire hit in the bottom of the 10th to win it for the A's, and give hope to their fans that they could beat the hated Dodgers.  Of course, the A's wound up losing the next two, and I had my worst moment as a baseball fan.  I went into a two-month funk, and later learned that I couldn't take it THAT seriously.  

#4 was just being at the '87 All Star Game in Oakland. It wound up being a 14-inning, low-scoring affair.  

#5 was seeing Tanyon Sturtze toss a no-hitter for the Huntsville Stars against the Chattanooga Lookouts in Historic Engel Stadium, and getting him to sign my scorecard.  This was the high point of a ten-day baseball vacation in 1993.  No one realized he had a no-no until about the 7th or 8th inning, because he walked quite a few batters.  Quite a few fans even left the ballpark early!

Written by:  "Rocket20K2"

The biggest baseball thrill in my short (15- year-old) life came on October 19, 1996. Yep, Game 1 of the 1996 World Series. Sure, it was a 12-1 blowout, but that day was just incredible. After we woke up and had breakfast we went to the Marriott hotel where the Atlanta Braves were staying. We ended up meeting some of the Atlanta Braves players as well as manager Bobby Cox. I got to talk with Cox for about ten solid minutes telling him about myself and what I knew about baseball. He seemed interested at what I actually said and we had a good conversation. Then after the hotel we went to the All Star Cafe where Charlie Sheen was on hand along with one of the World Series trophies that the Yankees had won in the Seventies.  

After the All Star Cafe, we took the subway to East 161st Street and Yankee Stadium.  Outside the stadium baseball was in the air. There were several venders on the street selling various items. There were also the occasional food venders along the walk into the stadium. After doing a little shopping, I headed into the stadium at about 4:00 for a 7:30 game. We were watching batting practice when Derek Jeter hit a home run about halfway up in the bleachers. Without a thought I raced from my seat and dove on the ball. I had gotten myself a baseball!  At 7:00 the festivities started. There was the introduction of the two teams and the National Anthem. Then as was the tradition, Joltin' Joe DiMaggio threw out the ceremonial first pitch and we were underway. 

Throughout the first three innings, all of the bleachers were up on their feet chanting "Let's Go Yankees."  But Andruw Jones would spoil the fun belting two homers becoming the youngest player to hit a World Series HR. It was over by the third, as the Braves had taken an 8-0 lead.  By 11:00 the game had ended and we were on the subway making our way home to Providence, RI.

Written by:  "WL2501"

I was playing for the Salisbury Astros in 1965 Western Carolina League. Chuck Churn was the manager. Our shortstop was a slightly built guy, Fred Light. In those days we never stayed over night.  We'd play an away game and then come back the same night. We sure did get tired. We were also responsible for all the equipment.  Somehow the guy getting the bats for a particular trip wasn't so responsible.  So we show up without any bats.  The other team loans us a couple of bats.  Fred finds one he likes, and he hits five home runs that night . . and he kept the bat.  A fun night. 

Written by:  "lockmanb"

On consecutive days in September 1999, I had the pleasure of witnessing two of the most unbelievable baseball games ever in the history of the world.

The Harrisburg Senators, AA affiliate of the Montreal Expos, were the reigning champions of the Eastern League, having won the championship three years in a row, 1996, 1997, and 1998. The team was in last place in July '99 when they started to win. They managed to clinch a playoff spot  and won the first round against a better team, the Erie Seawolves.  The finals were then against the Norwich (Conn.) Navigators, the AA affiliate of the New York Yankees.

Games one and two were split. The final three games were played in Harrisburg. Game three went to Norwich 2-1, with the Senators getting all of three hits.

I attended Game 4. After one inning the Senators led 7-0. After the fourth inning they trailed 9-7. They went on to win 10-9. It was draining to watch, and it was another example of why baseball is the best game in the world.

Game 5 was Monday, September 20. It began drizzling about game time, and rained off and on throughout.  After 6 innings, the Senators led 6-4. Three innings away from their fourth straight Eastern League title, something that has never before been done. Harrisburg put in a new pitcher who pitched to six batters, four of whom scored. After 7 innings it was Norwich 9, Harrisburg 6. They built up our hopes with a run in the eighth, now
trailing 9-7. It's possible to score two runs in an inning, after all.

The Senators' ace reliever promptly gave up two runs in the ninth. That was it, then. No way we could come back from an 11-7 deficit.

Bottom of the ninth. Harrisburg quickly loaded the bases with no one out. The next batter hit a ground ball to the third baseman who was jammed by the ball, fell down, and managed to just flip the ball to the shortstop who was not near any bag.  Everybody safe, one run in. Now down 11-8. Bases loaded, no one out. Norwich changed pitchers.  The next Senator batter popped out weakly to shallow left field. The next batter struck out.

Then up came Milton Bradley (real name) who was 0 for 4 on the night with three strikeouts. He ran the count to three and two.

There it was. The best the game of baseball could offer. The last game of a five-game series for the league championship, bottom of the ninth, two outs, bases loaded, full count.

Milton Bradley connects with a line drive to right that rises, and rises, and rises...the right fielder jumps for it...and it disappears over the right field wall for a game winning, championship winning grand slam home run. Delirious Senators players poured out onto the field. Norwich players just slumped in their place on the field. Everyone was stunned.

It was truly an out-of-body experience.

Sorry for being long-winded, but it was a finish never before matched in the history of sports, and one that will never again be matched. Proof once again that baseball is the greatest game in the history of the world!

Written by:  "tessden"

My best memory? That's easy. August 19, 1969. The Cubs were in first, 7.5 games up on the Mets and we went to see the Cubs play the Braves.  I'm a southpaw and my favorite pitcher, Ken Holtzman, was on the mound that day. Santo homered with a man on in the first and Holtzman held the Braves scoreless through four, five, six innings. Looking at our scorecards, it dawned on us that he was holding them hitless, too.

Hank Aaron batted in the seventh. He clobbered one that sent Billy Williams to the wall in left. We were sitting in the upper deck between home and first, and I saw Williams feeling his way along the vines, eyes up at the ball that looked sure to land on Waveland Avenue. Then he leaped up, high as he could stretch. I thought sure he'd come down with just a glove full of ivy. But, I heard the fans down the left field line roar and Billy held that glove aloft, Aaron's drive held safely in the webbing.

Aaron batted once more -- with two out in the ninth. Still no hits. He grounded to second. I remember Beckert clamping his hand down so hard on that ball and throwing ever so carefully to Banks. Aaron was out, and by the time I could shift my eyes back to Holtzman on the mound, Santo was already leaping onto him. Jubilant, beered-up Bleacher Bums climbed down the vines and kicked up the dust of the warning track. The whole place shook. Ken Holtzman, my favorite pitcher, had thrown a no-hitter, and I was there!

We all know what happened to the Cubs that year. We've had to listen to tales of the "Miracle Mets" until we puke. But that day, my Cubs were the best.

Written by:   "tsw_9"

Here are a couple of my favorite baseball "situations". Ironically they are overlapping.

In 1956 I attended Don Larsen's Perfect Game. My Dad and I sat so far back in the upper grandstand in RF that we could not see the rightfielder below us. About 20 years ago, while moving, I decided that there was no reason to hold on to the ticket stubs from the game. To my Dad's dying day, he always reminded me that it was I who threw out the two ticket stubs.

During the '94 season Eric Wedge, a friend of the family, got his second call-up with Boston. His first game was in Yankee Stadium, so a friend and I decided to take in the game. At the time the Yankees were only drawing about 20,000 fans a game, so we figured that there would be no problem in
getting a descent seat. As it turned out the big rivalry drew 45+ thousand -- and guess where we ended up sitting?  It might have been the same seat that I had at my last visit to the Stadium in '56!

Two weeks ago my wife and I spent three days in Cooperstown for the Induction Ceremony. Sitting on the field at Clark Center, among 50,000 baseball fans was quite a thrill. It was perhaps the most emotional sports experience of my life. While we were walking the streets in town my wife noticed that Don Larsen was signing autographs. We purchased the classic picture of Don throwing the final pitch of the perfect game and had it signed. Perhaps now Dad will let it slide -- a little bit.

Written by: "VPaterno"

Mine just happened a few weeks ago ... July 18, 1999 at Yankee Stadium.  That's right, David Cone's perfect game --the first-ever regular-season interleague no-hitter, too. And to have it happen on Yogi Berra Day, with Don Larsen there (he threw the first pitch to Berra to replicate 1956), well, it's simply too eerie.

I've had plenty of other thrills, too ... Bernie Williams homering to beat Baltimore in game one of the '96 ALCS (the Jeffrey Maier game)...Curt Schilling shutting out Toronto in game five of the '93 World Series...watching the first Mets-Yankees "Subway Series" game in 1997...Cone striking out 19 Phillies at the Vet on the final day of the '91 season ... but Cone's feat was clearly the creme de la creme.

Written by:  "DejarouEHG"

Even after attending more than 250 MLB games, I still get goosebumps whenever I go into a stadium and see the grass for the first time.  However, there was no greater moment than walking in the portal behind home plate to see the view of Wrigley Field for the first time.  I was looking forward to seeing the stadium since I was six, when the NBC Game of the Week always seemed to be televised from Wrigley.  It was everything it is said to be and more.

My favorite baseball moments, aside from getting to see Tom Seaver pitch on numerous occasions, are the following:

* Game 7, 1986 World Series - For obvious reasons.  Shea, admittedly one of the great wastes of real estate, was a special place to be.  In no other stadium do I hear people get applauded as loudly just for moving the runner over. I think New York fans in general are vastly overrated (being one myself), but they are clearly true "inside baseball" fans.  This was an incredible evening.  My most vivid memory of the night, aside from the final out and Jesse Orosco's fake bunt for a base-hit, was that no one seemed to mention the fact that if Darryl Strawberry had decided to use any effort, he could have easily caught Rich Gedman's home run.  Darryl, who I am actually a fan of despite his transgressions, didn't jump high enough to leap-frog a dime!  And, it still hit off his glove.

* Game 6, 1996 World Series - Yankee Stadium is an incredibly magical place, especially when it is World Series time.  Even though the game itself didn't have any real memorable moments, there is a sense of history that is unique.  Wade Boggs doing his "Hi-Ho Silver" during the celebration was also fun, at the time.

Written by:  "jthomas"

For parts of three summers, I was a batboy and clubhouse attendant for the visiting teams at Wrigley Field. I met some interesting people (players, of course, but also the wide-eyed hangers-on), saw some great plays and dramatic games (not too many of the latter, though, as these were the Cubs
that were usually eliminated from the pennant race by mid-May) and was on hand for a few momentous events, like a division-winning clubhouse celebration.

My biggest thrill, however, was simply walking out of the dugout and onto the grass at Wrigley Field for the first time, wearing a baggy, garish, polyester San Diego Padres uniform. I could not have known then that I would spend much of my next several summer vacations washing uniforms, polishing spikes, and running to McDonald's five or six times a day for pre-game Big Macs (for the players, not for me). So on my first day, I savored the event -- taking my time getting dressed, hanging around the clubhouse, and listening intently to the chatter on the Padres' bench during the game. I remember that as many times as I could during the game, I would pick up the bat, step on the plate, and trot past the Cubs' catcher as if I'd just cracked a home run.

I never visit Wrigley Field anymore. These days, it's strictly minor league baseball for me, and my biggest thrill comes from being at the park long before the gates open, catching a BP ball or two, and then watching the game from my usually deserted bleachers way down the right field line.

Written by:  "delanden"

In 1984, my stepson and I went to the last game of the season. The Cubs were National League East Champs. After the game all the players came out and waved to all the fans in a once-around the park. A couple of years later I bought the Video History of the Chicago Cubs.  At the end of the video they showed that scene of that game. Now when I watch it, I can say I was at that game. I concur with your opinion:  Wrigley is the best ballpark in either league. It's been well cared for every year of its existence. Thanks for the memories!

Written by:   "prowe568"

I have two favorite baseball thrills:

1. I saw the 1946 All Star Game at Fenway when Ted Williams hit three home runs, the last off of Rip Sewell's gopher pitch. Also, what a starting lineup in the outfield!  Ted Williams in left, Joe DiMaggio in center and King Kong Keller in right. Bob Feller on the mound. I was 14 at the time.

2. The 1948 playoff game with Denny Galehouse starting for the Red Sox against Cleveland. If the Red Sox won, it would have been a subway series.

Yes! I am a long-suffering Red Sox fan.

Written by:  "Stipe1280"

My biggest thrill took place on April 19, 1996 at the Ballpark in Arlington. My Rangers were playing the Orioles and the score was Texas-10, Baltimore-7 going into the bottom of the eighth inning. To make a long inning short, at the end of the inning the Rangers had put up 16 runs making the score 26-7. They set two team records that night (most runs in an inning, and most runs in a game). The inning had lasted over an hour, and the place was just going wild. I had been fortunate to sneak down with a friend to a seat just above the Orioles dugout and after Darryl Hamilton finally ended the inning with a ground out, then-Orioles first baseman Rafael Palmeiro trotted back to the dugout and tossed me the ball that ended the greatest inning in Texas Rangers history. The game ended 26-7 and was truly a great game to see.

Joe's response:  I'm glad you thought it was "a great game to see," because I was absolutely dying while watching on TV (of course, I root for a different team than you!).  I particularly recall that when the game got out of hand, the O's inserted reserve infielder Manny Alexander as pitcher -- and following three walks, he gave up a grand slam.  So much for his Cy Young aspirations!  I think this left him with a career ERA of 54.0 (one appearance, four earned runs, two-thirds of an inning pitched).

Written by:   "tjtnoie"

There are two - First, it was 1983 and I was a sophomore in high school. My uncle was able to secure eight tickets to the All-Star game in Chicago at old, and better, Comiskey Park. My twin brother and I were so excited to get to our seats, which were in the fourth row of the leftfield upper deck, right above Jim Rice, that we kicked over my uncle's beer. We couldn't believe getting the chance to watch all our heroes on a sultry summer's night.  To top it off, we saw history when San Francisco's Atlee Hammaker served up the first grand slam in All-Star history to Fred Lynn. The final score might have been a yawner - 13-3 - but the memories of the evening last forever.

Some eight years later, I was working in my first sportswriting job out of college covering the Cincinnati Reds.  They were playing the Chicago Cubs in then-Riverfront Stadium on a typically sticky August evening on the banks of the Ohio River. Between innings, I took a walk from the writer's press box down a back hallway and into a side room near the dining area where the refreshments machine was.  Just as I turned to go into the room, who should be walking out but Harry Caray. This was back when he was still able to down a few cold ones during games and he had one large draft in each hand -- "Nothing beats a hot night like a cold Budweiser," said the world's most famous Bud man. We miss ya, Harry!

Written by:   "EV072"

I have two separate moments, both which took place in Miami's Pro Player Stadium:  The first I'll never forget, October 26-27, 1997, Game 7 of the World Series, bottom of the 11th, bases loaded, score tied 2-2, two outs, and one strike for Edgar Renteria . . . who hits a line drive through the glove and over the head of pitcher Charles Nagy.  Craig Counsell scores the winning run, The Florida Marlins have just won the World Series in their 5th season with a 3-2 win over the Cleveland Indians.  But there is a low to this story as you know -- the Marlins will follow this win with the biggest firesale in the history of baseball and the worst record for a defending Series champion.  But the elation and joy of victory will never go away as I had the privilege of seeing the game live and sitting right behind 3rd base in the lower level -- an experience that I will always treasure.  My second moment came on the nights of September 1 & 2, 1998.  Those were the two nights when Mark McGwire hit HR numbers 56, 57 on Sep. 1 and 58, 59 on Sep. 2.  I was lucky to have the privilege of seeing Big Mac hit not just one but four HRs in the Home Run Race, including the one that tied and broke Hack Wilson's 68-year old NL record of 56 HRs.  Again, another great memory I'll never forget.

Written by:  "MJTACOMA"

My biggest thrill?  The 1995 playoffs!   The Yankees came to Seattle up two games to none.  My father and I were in the stands --  the first three games we had attended together since 1968!  And the memories will be with me forever . . . not just because the Mariners won one of the most exciting series I have ever seen, but because my father was there to enjoy the games with me.

Written by: "PGord76155"

My biggest baseball thrill was on September 18, 1997 -- the Giants and the Dodgers, Candlestick Park.  Bottom of the 12th inning, Brian Johnson hits a game-winning solo shot into the left field bleachers!!!  MAN!!! Candlestick Park went NUTS!!!  What made that game even better was that I got to share this special moment in Giants' History with my father.  I'll never forget it.  That was my biggest thrill in Baseball to date.

Written by:  "rderouse"

Last year was extremely exciting for me because, as usual, I bought a lot of tickets for out-of-town games early. I was in Cincinnati, Atlanta, Chicago (including the only game Sammy overtook Mac and Mac came back with two to win it in extra innings), Milwaukee, Houston -- all to see my Cards. I've never seen the kind of electricity in ballparks as when Mac came to town.  It gave me the impression that stadiums don't make the game but the fans sure do.

Written by:  "mcnorton"

I was also in Southern California on business. Had to overnight in Upland--what's to do in Upland at night? A tent on top of the TV said I was only 20 minutes from Anaheim Stadium. I went, got a seat next to the Angels' bullpen in right field, watched Don Sutton warm up, then win his 300th!

Second baseball game I ever attended was in 1951, Old Comiskey, Yankees in town.  Joe DiMaggio is playing center field. It has to be September because the Yanks already had Johnny Sain, so DiMag's almost done. There's a kid playing right field I could have hit with a wad of gum from where I'm sitting. Yep--rookie Mickey Mantle!

Written by:  "ejmalone"

The greatest thrill of my baseball life (other than coaching my son for 10 yrs.) was in October 1996 when a buddy of mine took me and my wife to NYC and we got tickets to see the Yanks - my first time ever visit to the Bronx Zoo. I remember there in about the middle of the third inning
and a great big grin came over this old tired face. I turned to my wife and said: "I can't believe I'm finally here in Yankee Stadium!"  What a thrill -- of a lifetime, I'd say. We got to see three games that weekend and even take in a Broadway play in the midst of it but what a moment to discover myself in that storied park amongst the grandeur of baseball history. This is my grandest baseball park story!

Written by:  "deblade"

The euphoria you say you experienced watching Sammy hit the slam for #63, is the same feeling I had back on September 5th & 6th 1995, when Cal Ripken tied and then passed Lou Gehrig's consecutive-game streak.  Having been a life-long Orioles fan -- seeing this live and watching how Cal handled himself and the way he embraced the fans was unbelievable, words can't even come close to describing it.  Watching those numbers drop from the warehouse and proclaim Cal, the true Ironman, is a feeling I will never forget.  I even managed to get a hold of the man who caught Cal's home run in game 2131 and arranged for him to be on the morning TV show I produced at the time.  We were the first to show the gifts Cal had given him for returning the homerun ball.  It was a magical night, and one I will be able to tell my grandchildren about --- their grandmother and I were there!

Written by:  "kenmozo"

I cannot agree with you more regarding Slammin' Sammy. I envy you and your memories! I do not know what the old school would say about cheering for someone on the other team, but one thing that we BOTH know without much soul searching----we are baseball fans first (as are most fans I wish to believe), and provincial fans second.  It's the game, stupid!--to paraphrase a popular political line. I hope the Padres' players learn a lesson from this...it's the game! 

Written by: "chiefhusker"

Over Labor Day weekend this year (1998), my husband and I were in St. Louis celebrating our anniversary.  I planned this back in early June, as my husband is the biggest baseball fanatic I've ever met.  He has been following Mark McGwire since he came into the league back in the 80's. I
told him I thought maybe McGwire would be close to the record by September.  We bought tickets to two of the four games going on while we were there.  We missed 60, saw a close foul ball, and missed 61, but on September 8, 1998 we saw the greatest moment in modern baseball and perhaps of all time....Mark McGwire hitting number 62!  The stadium erupted into euphoria and you couldn't help but feel every ounce of adrenaline that was in that ballpark.  The emotions of the players, when he picked up his son and celebrated (multiple times), when he climbed into the crowd to be with the Maris family, the congratulatory hug by Sammy Sosa, the post game celebration where it was announced that his number would be retired there in Busch Stadium, and the young groundskeeper humbly returning number 62 to Mark McGwire.

That is, by far, our greatest moment in baseball!

Written by:  "dugj"

My second best....I was 13 rows back about 20 feet down the 3rd base line for Nolan Ryan's 5th no-no.  I have my ticket framed next to his Rookie card.  I stayed up all night waiting for the morning papers to come out and I got about 50 of each!  I still have them in great condition.