Patterson's Pub

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tony with friend
Hey Tony who is that next to you?
ball dude with a friend
tony on the board
tony who
Hanging out on the sidelines.
Tony makes it to the big board
Tony Who???
BB Card
bobblehead doll
BBcard back
Yeap! Tony got his own baseball card
Tony's limited edition bobblehead

Limited Edition of course!

att scoreboard
Tony makes the scoreboard.
tony scoreboard worled series
Yeap! Tony makes the scoreboard bis time
2014 World Series
another of tony
in the dugout
still doing the ball chaser thing

Local makes it to the major leagues
By Zoe Yudice, Reporter Mendocino, Mendocino Beacon on Twitter

POSTED 10/20/2016 9AM PDT

"Monday night there were a couple of moments where the Giants really were one an offensive rally, and being on the field, looking up over 40,000 people screaming at you, it is like a jet airplane flying over head. You can feel the roar of the crowd." said said Tony Graham, longtime resident and business owner of Patterson's Pub in Mendocino, who had the pleasure of participating in last week's Giants' playoff game against the Cubs as the Balldude. "Now I understand haw the players feel when the is cheering them on. I mean my pulse rose, my heart beat rose. It was really very exciting."

Balldudes and Balldudettes are responsible for fielding foul balls to give to children in the crowd. They are dressed in full uniform and can usually be spotted sitting on stools 20 feet or so behind third and first base. People arc chosen for this position through the Giants Balldude/Balldudettes program, which was started more than 20 years ago as a way to involve fans in the on-field action.

"It was a fun experience last year. I was running a little bit late, and as I was going up the stops to go onto the field, the national anthem starts, so I stop and take off my hat and I am shoulder to shoulder with two people. I look over and it's Jeremy Affeldt and Javier Lopez, literally shoulder to shoulder."

In addition to being in the middle of the action, Graham also enjoys being able to give the balls to fans, autographing them 'Balldude'.

"Monday night was fun because there was a little girl, who couldn't have been more than a year old, and I gave the ball to her. It was her first Giants game and her mom and dad were all excited. They wanted selfie photos taken, and they wanted the ball to be autographed for their daughter, and that is how you win support of the fans," said Graham.
While fun and thrilling, you do have to be on guard, explained Graham.

"Two years ago there was a player who was on third base, his name was Pablo Sandoval, and he was a big, big man. I could feel the ground shake as he was running towards me. It was like an out of control freight train, so I grabbed the little stool I was sitting on, and I hopped over the railing into the crowd. I mean, if ho had run into me I would have been as fiat as a pancake," said Graham

In another game, Graham was knocked over by a foul ball.

"I was sitting on my stool and this line drive came screaming across the ground - I mean sonic of these go iso miles per hour - and it hit me right here in my shin. Of course you get a big welt, but it knocked me backwards off my stool and it actually flipped me over, and I ended up in the dirt. I got a standing ovation from the two sections that were behind me," said Graham

Graham has been a ball dude for a decade now due to a lucky coincidence of being in the right place at the right time. Ten years ago Graham happened to be in Santa Rosa shopping when he received a call from a ticket representative, who he knew through his season passes, asking him if he was interested in filling in for the ball dude scheduled for third base who had fallen ill.

"I started out as their emergency ball dude — if someone got stuck in traffic and couldn't make it, or someone got hurt, or any number of things. After a couple years I worked it into an assignment and now I do it anywhere between a half a dozen to a dozen times a year."

Many of the Balldude and Balldudette spots are filled by a core group of men and women who regularly work several games per season. Graham estimates that he has worked 60 to So games since starting. and has no plans to quit anytime soon.

"I just turned 70 years old, so I figure I still have a few more years to go," said Graham.
tony ball dude