Austin Photographer Patrick Meredith

www.meredith-photo.com

Posts Tagged ‘baseball

A few new ones…

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Dell Diamond at sunset Round Rock Express

It has been a hot minute since I last updated (literally one of the hottest summers in history), but here we go.  As I mentioned on a previous update, I shot the Round Rock Express‘ last home game against Nashville Sounds a couple nights ago.  Pretty fun shooting some baseball again.  They are ending their season this weekend/Monday, so you should get out there and watch some baseball while you still can.

Nashville Sounds Chris Cody

The action was pretty good, including a small collision with the pitcher and the catcher of the Sounds…

Reggie Abercrombie Round Rock Express

Despite having a couple of bad at bats, Reggie Abercrombie came through with 2 RBIs and a couple of nice catches near center field.

Round Rock Express

I also grabbed a bunch of detail shots (kind of like the one above) and some panoramas from just about every angle I could find…

A view from the stands at the Dell Diamond during a Round Rock Express baseball game in Round Rock.

A view from the stands at the Dell Diamond during a Round Rock Express baseball game in Round Rock.

I also shot the second to last home game of the Austin Aztex.  Pretty fun night as usual, but the lights kill me over at Nelson Field.  Thankfully they are moving to House Park (on Lamar/15th)  next season…The lights aren’t any better, but it is a short walk from my house.

Jamie Watson Austin Aztex soccer

Joining the Aztex again was Jamie Watson, who played in Austin last season.  The kid was the top scorer in the USL-2 with 12 goals and 6 assists.  He didn’t score any of the goals in the 1-0 win over Miami, but he took a couple of shots at the goal when he was put in towards the end of the game.

 Eddie Johnson Austin Aztex

Eddie Johnson scored the sole goal, which was enough for the win…The first win in 10 games, dating back to early July.  Always good to see our   take the win.  The last game of the season is on the 7th.  If you haven’t been, it is a lot of fun.  Any why wait until next year when you can do it now?

I also shot my first ‘real’ high school football game on Friday, the Taco Shack Bowl.  I say ‘real’ as in Friday Night Lights.  It was a lot of fun being on the sidelines again and I can’t wait until the season gets into full swing…

Taco Shack Bowl House Park Austin Texas

Taco Shack Bowl House Park Austin Texas

Taco Shack Bowl House Park Austin Texas

House Park Austin Tx

Above is House Park on Lamar and 15th street, the new home of the Austin Aztex.  Check out that view!  You can see the Capitol Building from the stands too.  The stadium, which seats around 5,000 people, should be a better venue for the Aztex.  The sidelines aren’t big and there is no track running around the field, making it less dangerous for players and allowing the fans to sit almost on top of the action.  All they need to do is install some new lights and everyone (me) will be happy.

In other news, VOLLEYBALL HAS JUST BEGUN!!!!!  I’m very excited about this.  Volleyball has got to be one of the hardest sports to shoot.  Granted anyone can shoot a serve and the players standing around, but only really talented photographers can make great images at a game.  Most venues are dimly lit, the action is really fast and the ball can go in any direction.  In any event, it is one of my favorite sports to shoot, even though I’ve only shot 3 or 4 games.  Hopefully this season will change those numbers a bit and yield a couple images for me to post.  Here are two from last season that I enjoyed…..

Caldwell High School Volleyball

Volleyball

And that is it for the moment.

Pedernales Park Johnson City TXHank at Pedernales Falls near Johnson City, TX

What a weekend…

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The 2009 NCAA Baseball Regional Tournament swung through Austin at UFCU Disch-Falk Field this past weekend and I was there to document -every- game, including the history making 25 inning game with the Texas Longhorns vs Boston College.  I shot more photos in the last few days than I have shot in the same time period, even in my full-time staff positions.  I shot over 20gigs worth of photos….I’ve only done a quick edit through about half of that, so I’ve got some more work to be doing over the next few days…

Texas Longhorns vs Boston College Longest game in History

This was the scene around 12:45a.m., near the 2oth inning when Austin Wood was still pitching…The stands were still PACKED with people, which I thought was pretty surprising.  The UT games sold out each night, with attendence well over 8,000 (I believe they said there were 6,832 seats?), including general admission.

Matt Hempel, who works for the UT athletic department, took this photo of me at some point during the 7 hour game.

Austin photographer Patrick Meredith

I felt like a zombie around the 16th inning.  I had to put my cameras down for a few minutes and take a rest.  Looking back, I guess it was pretty cool being there to witness the great pitching and horrible hitting, but at the time, I just wanted the game to get over.  Following the Longhorns 3-2 win, I still had to shoot the press conference.  I didn’t get home until after 2a.m.

I had to be back to the stadium by 10a.m. to set up remotes, get my pregame stuff and eat 5 more hotdogs, but I didn’t get there until 11:30a.m. for the noon game.  I slept right through my alarm, but I managed to wake up and grab some photos from the days game.

Boston College baseball 2009 NCAA Regional

The heat, for the entire weekend, was in the lower to mid-90’s, with a heat index around 100.  The field was so hot it made it almost impossible to sit in the photo wells, so I shot a lot of photos from the stands, such as the one above and below.

Army vs. UT baseball 2009 NCAA Regional

EVERY game was good and full of action…unlike a lot of games I’ve covered over the last couple of years.  Things always get better in the post season, as these guys seem put a lot more into playing.  Every throw has just a bit more ‘umpfh’ and the players are diving around everywhere.  Lots and Lots of jube…

Army baseball 2009 Austin Regional

Even the coaches weren’t immune from the celebration/dejection bug, as they tend to be.  I’ve got some great shots of Coach Augie that I still haven’t edited yet that I plan on posting at some point…

Boston College vs Army 2009 NCAA regional

As the heat of the day began to wear off, I slowly made my way back down to field level to shoot some action from eye level.  In a majority of baseball fields, there are HUGE ads that distract your eye away from the action.  Disch-Faulk Field is one of the exceptions though…There are two ads that I can think of (both are bright red…), but there are no ads on the outfield walls, which is pretty unusual and makes your photos that much better.

Eagles Boston College 2009 NCAA regional

And the typical pitcher shot.  I don’t know how many pitches I photographed, but I lost count after the first two days.  I need to get stalking through the rest of the photos I have on my harddrive and get them online, so I’m out of here.  I was hoping this weekend wouldn’t be so crazy, but it looks like the Austin Aztexs have two games and I’ve already gotten multiple calls about covering UIL State Tournaments as well.   Oh boy….

baseball..baseball..baseball..pole vaulting?

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So I got a couple of calls to shoot the 2009 NCAA Baseball Austin Regional Tournament over at Disch-Faulk Field this weekend.  I’m scheduled to shoot 7 games in three days, so it should be an interesting/long/sunburnt weekend.  I’m traveling up to Round Rock tonight to see the Round Rock Express end their week long homestead with a game against the Salt Lake Bees.  I’m going to go shoot while the light is pretty (7pm start) then retire to a seat with a fat hotdog (because I don’t eat enough of them already) and enjoy some baseball…

In closing, I thought I would share a couple of photos I shot during the Sports Shooter Academy held in Irvine last month to take my mind off of baseball for a moment.  I just thought the series was pretty funny.  The coach was silent the entire time until he made fun of this pole vaulter.

Photos by Austin sports photographer Patrick Meredith

Photos by Austin sports photographer Patrick Meredith

More photos to come.  I’ve been busy shooting…Triathlons,portraits, soccer games….yikes.  It might be Monday or Tuesday before I get back though.  🙂

Blog time

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Where to start……..

Well, I shot a few games of baseball this past week…..

Michael Torres dives for a ground ball during the Longhorns 5-4 win over Texas A&M on Sunday at UFCU Disch-Falk Field in Austin.

Michael Torres dives for a ground ball during the Longhorns 5-4 win over Texas A&M on Sunday at UFCU Disch-Falk Field in Austin.

It was blazing hot, with temperatures in the mid 90’s….But with the new artificial turf, it seemed like it was well over 100 degrees anywhere near the field.  Lucky for myself and all the other photographers, there are plenty of places to shoot from off of the field.  Not only is it slightly cooler, but it cleans up your backgrounds nicely….So please be nice and courteous to the fans who have paid for seats and those needing a place to sit.

Brandon Loy reaches back to pull in a pop fly in the infield.

Brandon Loy reaches back to pull in a pop fly in the infield.

In my ever expanding quest to bring my clients the best/different images, I’ve started employing multiple remote cameras at nearly every sporting event I cover.  I started using remotes about 2 years ago at high school baseball games and have used them at multiple events since, including basketball, soccer, and NFL/NCAA football and horse racing, to name a few.

For example, here is an image I shot with my hand held camera from above:

University of Texas second base baseball

It has the typical second base action.  A runner sliding, the second baseman throwing and at least a face.  Very typical and kind of boring.     With a remote camera on a low position shooting second from a different perspective, it gives us a totally different image.  See the remote here (complete with yelling fans):

Remote cameraFor this day game I used a Nikon D1H, a Nikkor 300mm, 2 magic arms, 3 safety cables, 1 Pocketwizard PlusII Tranciever, 3 superclamps and one Pocketwizard remote release.  Shooting at such a close angle, it gave me a  nice tight frame at second base, which allowed me to use this older camera so I could make use of all the megapixels it provides.  University of Texas second baseballAs you can see (if you scroll back up to the image from above), I can capture multiple angles on the same play.  Pretty neat stuff really.  But what if we added a third camera pointed at second base from the outfield?

UT remote camera

I mounted a Nikon D2H with a 400mm attached using the exact same setup above (2 magic arms, 3 superclamps etc) to the TV scaffolding pointed at second base.  I fudged this one up a bit, as I missed focus on second base by about 1 foot.  Nothing like back focused images.  So we’ll skip the examples from this one, but it is in the works.  Instead you can pixelpeep a picture of Augie from the dugout.

Head Coach Augie Garrido, center, watches the Longhorns game against Texas A&M from the dugout on Sunday.

Head Coach Augie Garrido, center, watches the Longhorns game against Texas A&M from the dugout on Sunday.

You can see some more images from the games HERE.

In the middle of the heat wave, I also took some time off and went to Barton Springs here in Austin.  If you’ve never been to the natural pool in the middle of downtown, I can’t understand why.  It may be the ‘scene’, but you can’t beat the cool, deep waters.

Barton Springs Pool
Of  course I couldn’t resist bringing in a camera, so I packed up a D1X with a 12-24mm in the backpack for the bike ride there.  This is a friend of mine properly using the diving board.  I’m terrible at diving, but I can do a pencil like no other.  Like Deep Eddy (see last post), Barton Springs is full of speedos and banana hammocks….

Barton Springs Pool Austin Texas

For some reason I felt like this photo needed an ‘antique’ feel so experimented a little bit using Photoshop CS3.  Classic hair, classic suit.  I just wish I could muster up the courage to wear one of these myself.

Josh Hamilton fumbles a ball in center field in the bottom of the 9th inning, allowing Round Rock's Brian Bogusevic to move to third base.

Josh Hamilton fumbles a ball in center field in the bottom of the 9th inning, allowing Round Rock's Brian Bogusevic to move to third base.

After shooting UT, I traveled up to Round Rock to catch the Texas Rangers Josh Hamilton play a couple of rehab games with the Redhawks.  Hamilton looked awesome and is playing in the majors again.  He did make a big error in the outfield in the bottom of the 9th, allowing the winning run to advance to third base.  In the last inning, I positioned myself near the outfield to grab a photo of Hamilton as he was joking around with another player…I ended up getting a couple game telling shots…

Brian Bogusevic (23) celebrates with teammates after scoring the winning run in the bottom of the 9th inning.

Brian Bogusevic (23) celebrates with teammates after scoring the winning run in the bottom of the 9th inning.

Before I went to see the Express, I shot the Austin Aztex vs Puerto Rico Islanders on Friday.  It was pretty nice, as the game started with a little bit of daylight.

Austin Aztex

I also set up two remotes behind the net, but didn’t come up with anything in the 1-1 tie game.  One of these days this season maybe….

aztexblog1

Let me know if you saw me sitting on the sidelines, as they broadcasted the game on FSN.  Come out and see the Aztex play this Sunday.  The games are pretty fun and the fans sit very close to the action…

I also shot some NCAA Div-1 golf and the UIL State Golf Tournament as well.  The NCAA Tournament was held at the University of Texas Golf Club in West Austin…Granted I haven’t been on a lot of courses, the UT club was hands over heels the best course I’ve been on in Austin…Just wish my shoot had gone a little better.  I broke a 12-24mm lens and a memory card, containing my first two hours of shooting, became corrupted.  Yikes.

Cory Whitsett, of Houston Memorial, lets his club fly after teeing off into the trees on the 18th hole during the 2009 UIL State Golf Tournament in Austin, Texas

Cory Whitsett, of Houston Memorial, lets his club fly after teeing off into the trees on the 18th hole during the 2009 UIL State Golf Tournament in Austin, Texas

It was pretty fun being on the course again, as I usually only shoot golf a few times a year….Mostly during the UIL State Tournament and a couple other random times throughout the year.

Ryan Eibner (center), of Conroe, putts on the 10th green as Houston Memorial's Greg Rochna looks on

Ryan Eibner (center), of Conroe, putts on the 10th green as Houston Memorial's Greg Rochna looks on

Before I broke the 12-24mm, another photographer asked me, “What are you going to do with that thing?”  In an effort to prove I could get something, I spent a few holes shooting with it.  I didn’t get anything great with it, but heck, no other photographer there got this shot.

I also just got back from a trip to Missouri to see some family.  Amelia and I drove her car, packed to the gills with junk and 2 dogs, the 9 hours north.  We took a dip in the pool one day and wished we had brought coats the next.  Got to love the weather up there. The dogs enjoyed the big ‘ol yards up there though…

Blue Heeler dog

Hank enjoyed eating all the flowers and running around like a madman the entire trip.

I’m off now…time to eat some dinnnnnner.

photos by Austin photographer Patrick Meredith www.meredith-photo.com

Yet more baseball….

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All photography and content are copyright © Patrick Meredith.  Please email me at info@meredith-photo.com for more information on editorial use of my images.  I hate to put this up, but due to the large traffic Bud Norris is sending to my site and the sites that have been using my images illegally, I have to mention that I take copyright laws very seriously and will pursue those breaking the law.
Bud Norris celebrates after retiring a New Orleans batter to end a tough inning during Round Rock's 3-7 loss against the Zephyers on Thursday at the Dell Diamond.

Bud Norris celebrates after retiring a New Orleans batter to end a tough inning during Round Rock's 3-7 loss against the Zephyers on Thursday at the Dell Diamond.

It seems like I can’t get away from the baseball lately.  But then again that isn’t a bad thing.  I witnessed the Round Rock Express drop their fifth straight game, the longest streak of the season.  Astros starting pitcher Brian Moehler is taking the mound tonight while he rehabs an injury, so hopefully he can help turn it around before moving back up to the majors.

Eli Iorg misses a pop fly in right field, allowing a New Orleans Zephyer onto second base in the first inning.

Eli Iorg misses a pop fly in right field, allowing a New Orleans Zephyer onto second base in the first inning.

Anyhow, tonight we are headed to a Cory Branan show at Antone’s.  If you haven’t heard of Cory Branan, you probably aren’t the first….But his shows have increasingly become more and more packed over the years.  His core fan base, however, can and will fill a small venue with no problem.  Check out some of his music HERE.  He made an apperance on the David Letterman Show a while back as well.  Amazingly, I don’t have any good photos of the guy.  Oh well.

After the show, I will be dropping Amelia off at the airport and I’m going to have a weekend full of University of Texas baseball, Round Rock Express baseball, Austin Aztex soccer and Manor Downs horse racing.  Should be a good time…

photos by Austin photographer Patrick Meredith www.meredith-photo.com

Express open 8 game homestand

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I haven’t had the chance to photograph the Round Rock Express, a AAA affliate of the Houston Astros, since last season and last nights game was a treat.  They recently rebuilt the press box, and the new facilities (and beverages) are not only a welcome change, but also very, very nice.  From the TV room, you can get right behind home plate for a view of the very well manicured feild.

The Round Rock Express take the field Tuesday night at the Dell Diamond, where they hosted the New Orleans Zephyrs in the first of eight consecutive home games in Round Rock.

The Round Rock Express take the field Tuesday night at the Dell Diamond, where they hosted the New Orleans Zephyrs in the first of eight consecutive home games in Round Rock.

The Express will be hosting the New Orleans Zephyers every night this week until Monday, with games starting roughly at 7p.m.  It was a lot of fun being on the field again, and the action was great on Tuesday.

Round Rock's Mark Saccomanno, right, and teammate Matt Kata collide while going for the ball during their match up against New Orleans at the Dell Diamond on Tuesday.

Round Rock's Mark Saccomanno, right, and teammate Matt Kata collide while going for the ball during their match up against New Orleans at the Dell Diamond on Tuesday.

The background kills me on this photo, but I love what is happening. No one was injured on the play, but I can’t say that for the next photo…

Round Rock's J.R. Towles gets hit in the face with a baseball after it bounced off the bat in a game against New Orleans on Tuesday in Round Rock.  Towles was reported as being ok, but did not return to play.

Round Rock's J.R. Towles gets hit in the face with a baseball after it bounced off the bat in a game against New Orleans on Tuesday in Round Rock. Towles was reported as being ok, but did not return to play.

So wild.  A single frame.  If you are viewing it 100%, you can see the baseball making an indention in his cheek.  He took it like a champ, but sat out the rest of the game.

Round Rock's Alberto Arias delivers a pitch during their match up against New Orleans at the Dell Diamond on Tuesday.

Round Rock's Alberto Arias delivers a pitch during their match up against New Orleans at the Dell Diamond on Tuesday.

And since the games start around 7p.m., the light has just gone to a golden color.  There are a few select spots on the field where slivers of the setting sun shine through the stadium and cast a perfect glow…One of these spots is about a foot long and situates itself on the pitcher for about 3 minutes before being blocked by a sno-cone vender in the hallway where the light shines through.  I still haven’t found a way to harness it yet, but I’m looking….

You can see more of my take from last night over at www.statesman.com in the sports section.

Written by patrickmeredith

April 22, 2009 at 4:21 pm

Fan for a day….

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Michael Torres can't come up with the out on a pop up foul ball during the Longhorns 8-5 victory over Oklahoma in Austin on Sunday.

Michael Torres can't come up with the out on a pop up foul ball during the Longhorns 8-5 victory over Oklahoma in Austin on Sunday.

Amelia and I went to see the University of Texas Longhorns host Oklahoma at UFCU Disch-Falk Field here in Austin on Sunday and what a game!  It was so nice to kick back and enjoy some nachos while watching some good baseball….But of course I couldn’t pass on bringing in my small camera to snap a couple of photos from our seats.  I used a small Nikon zoom lens attached to a D1H from our seats in section 102.  I also managed to break out all my teeth on the biggest bag of kettle popcorn that I’ve ever bought.  Anyhow, here are some more photos from my newest two megapixel camera.

I’ll actually be shooting the game against Rice on Wednesday, so hopefully I can pull together some nicer photos 🙂

photos by Austin photographer Patrick Meredith www.meredith-photo.com