Summer is officially here in a day or so and that means a lot of things to people: picnics, vacations, grilling, gardening, shorts and sandals. Summer also means baseball.
Wednesday evening we went to the third home game of the inaugural season of our new minor league team, the Hillsboro Hops. They won their first 3-game series in franchise history, but then, everything is “history” to this brand new club. They’re a short season single A minor league team affiliated with the Arizona Diamondbacks.
The Portland area – Hillsboro is a city about 15 miles to our west – hasn’t had any professional baseball since the Portland Beavers left in mid-2010. The team was the Yakama Bears until last year. They made the move to Hillsboro and were renamed the Hops, the grain used in brewing beer. That’s appropriate since the Portland area is one of the micro-brew capitals of the country and they grow a lot of hops in the Hillsboro area.
It took us about 25 minutes to drive from our home to the stadium, park and walk in. It was easy to find, parking is $5 and there is plenty of it and our seats were great, just a few rows behind the Hops dugout between first and home. The crowd of 2,740 or so was friendly and well behaved, the seats comfortable, the setting very pleasant. The weather forecast was for rain, and we half expected a rain delay or rainout, but we were lucky and though rain fell nearby, providing us with a rainbow beyond left field, we stayed dry.We had a lot of fun and already have tickets to another game. We went into the team store and each picked up a cap to wear to our next game. Go Hops!