Meet the people who work at the ballpark

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Not the players and the umps, but the behind the scenes folks like vendors and security guards and stuff.  Daniel Paulling of the Kansas City Star has interesting profiles of a bunch of them who work at Kauffman Stadium.  This bit — about a security guard who works down by the players’ wives section — caught my eye:

Burnett has developed a system where he can spot people who have
moved down to better seats.

While he doesn’t want to share too
many secrets, he said the way a person acts and other little things are
big giveaways.

It’s not terribly hard to spot people trying to trade up.  The key is what you do about it.  Some guys — like this guy — kick ’em back to where their real seats are.  Other guys just turn a blind eye, realizing that as long as the real ticket holder isn’t there it probably doesn’t matter.

But some guys — like the ushers at a ballpark I’ve been to a few times but which I won’t identify because I don’t want to get anyone in trouble — will steer you directly to a primo, unoccupied seat as early as the first inning for as little as a finsky.  They’ll even wipe it down for you as if you bought the seat yourself.

But, hey, if the guy in Kansas City wants to leave a few Lincolns on the table, that’s no skin off my nose . . .

Giants tab Madison Bumgarner to start Opening Day

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Alex Pavlovic of NBC Sports Bay Area reports that the Giants, to the shock of absolutely no one, have tabbed Madison Bumgarner to start on Opening Day, March 29 in Los Angeles against the Dodgers. He’ll pitch opposite Clayton Kershaw.

This will be the fifth consecutive season in which Bumgarner has started on Opening Day for the Giants. His five total Opening Day starts is still way behind the club record held by Juan Marichal, who started 10 Opening Days, including six consecutively from 1964-69.

Bumgarner, 28, missed nearly two months in the first half last season due to a dirt bike accident. He still managed to have a great season, compiling a 3.32 ERA with a 101/20 K/BB ratio in 111 innings.