Baseball On The Road: Louisiana, Day One
May 30, 2012
BATON ROUGE, La. - The plane was only a portion of the way into its four-hour flight time and the captain of the Sun Country Airlines charter announced that passengers could move as we'd reached our intended level of 37,000 feet.
Ah, the postseason has begun. If anything, that announcement signaled that the big games are about to get underway and the Beavers are really on their way to Baton Rouge for the first time in school history.
Wednesday was the big day for the team after finding out just two days earlier that Oregon State was destined to visit Alex Box Stadium as the No. 2 seed, opening with Belmont Friday. The club was very fortunate to be able to charter to Louisiana, severely cutting down on travel. Not only was the club able to fly out of Eugene - a good hour quicker trip than the usual drive to Portland - but OSU also managed to get its charter straight to Baton Rouge instead of New Orleans, which is the usual destination for commercial flights.
Chalk up at least another hour saved there, too.
For anyone who hasn't been able to experience a charter flight, it's certainly a nice change of pace. Not only is the team able to surpass the usual security (you still go through security, just don't have to wait in line) but you also get a full plane to yourself. It's very easy to find an empty row when only 50 or so of the 150 seats are taken.
That being said, these are not like professional charters with lobster and shrimp on board. The Beavers dined on sandwiches and cookies throughout the flight. Just enough to get through the four-hour flight.
A little more than an hour into the flight, Michael Conforto was informed he was the Pac-12 Conference's Freshman of the Year while he and Tyler Smith were named first team and Jace Fry was honorable mention. That certainly got a loud ovation from the back of the plane where the players had gathered (yes, coaches and staff took first class).
Those guys certainly deserved those honors.
We also got word before the flight that all of OSU's games in Baton Rouge will be televised on Comcast SportsNet Northwest (channel 37). Cox Sports televises many of LSU's games during the regular season and they were able to bid on the regional and Comcast fortunately picked up the feed. That's great news to hear as it will enable us to be followed by all of our great fans (who by the way, made Goss Stadium just an absolutely amazing home field advantage throughout the season, especially the series against Oregon).
Of course, Mike Parker is on the trip and you'll be able to tune in and hear his call on the Beaver Sports Radio Network in Oregon and Beaver Nation Online (osubeavers.com). Live stats will also be on osubeavers.com as is a tournament central page, postseason guide and we'll have a new set of notes (an abbreviated version from what's done during the regular season) for each game.
Not to mention, we'll be as active on Twitter as ever at Twitter.com/Beaver_Baseball so if you aren't following yet, make sure and do so.
Naturally, we'll do everything we can to make you feel as though you're at Alex Box Stadium.
The team is scheduled for an 11:30 a.m. CT workout at Alex Box on Thursday in preparation for the big weekend. We've heard it's open to the public so if you're in the area, make sure and stop by. It will last until 12:45 p.m. For those of you not able to make it, we'll do our best to get some pictures from the workout.
You can see some images from today's travel day above and a video with Matt Boyd (would have been longer but we can't interrupt his homework too much).
That's it for now. We've got some work to get done before things really pick up tomorrow.
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