Minor League Baseball is a grand tradition, and in my opinion, one of the most pure sports out there. What better way to pay tribute to it than with some photography, lomo style.
I’m a sports fan. And I live near Cleveland so some might know the pain that I go through on a regular basis with our teams (Browns, Indians, Cavs, etc.) But alas, I soldier on. And though I am a sports fan, I am also a geek, which would inevitably bring me into the realm of minor league and semi-pro sports. Enter the pride of Akron, Ohio, the Akron Aeros baseball team.
My fandom with the team predates its installation in Akron. I can remember going to Canton Indians games down at Thurman Munson Stadium in the bad part of Canton, Ohio (I didn’t know it was the bad part back then). Then 1996 happened and the team was shipped off to its shiny new Canal Park in downtown Akron. You’re darn right I held a grudge (after all, I was 8 at the time). But as with all things, my disdain for this new club and park subsided and I grew to love this team. Sure they are not major league but that’s what I love about it. Most of these guys playing out there barely make enough to support themselves. Some have to live 3-4 to an apartment just hoping that they will get the call-up to the big times.
You have to love the pride that these guys have to give it their all in front of 2000-5000 fans night in and night out. Take a trip to your nearest minor league team; you’ll be glad you did. You get to see live sports for a fraction of the cost, cheap parking, no crowds, and if you’re lucky, a game breaks out. And whether that game breaks out or not, you can get some really cool shots. I had my trusty Minolta X-370 with me and a roll of off-brand 400iso so I was ready to go.
Evening games are always fun to go to, especially with your camera because for once you don’t have to worry about sunburn, and you get some cool dusk shots and nicely saturated shots due to the park lights. It really makes for ideal picture taking. The somewhat low lighting also gives you a chance to get cool action shots like the pitcher winding up or the batter swinging. I was lucky enough to go on a gorgeous night where the Aeros were playing out-of-state rivals, the Seawolves of Erie, PA.
I’m sure many people cold not care less about minor league sports. I don’t blame them. It’s not the big leagues and it doesn’t come with the exposure or the money. But what it does come with is a sense of baseball times gone by. I get to experience a glimpse of what the “golden-age” of baseball was like. For me, that’s pretty cool. The cheap price tag for about three hours of entertainment doesn’t hurt either. When you can go see a professional game for fewer than 10 dollars (US) a ticket, free parking, very reasonable food and close seats; who would turn that down?
So take an afternoon, or even better, an evening, and go support your minor league baseball team. And don’t forget to always have your camera handy.