Dear Diary: photos on Twitter are boring, and we’re not going to take it anymore.

iPhone cameras, flip cams, Twitvids, Twitpics, blogs.

So many ways to bring up close and personal photos to the fans. So many avenues by which to share our special moments with ballplayers. So many methods by which fans can see their favorite personalities in the game, through the camera lenses of those who cover them.

So many ways to irritate the bejeebers out of the general public.

Yes, folks, apparently, we’ve become annoying. Really, really annoying.

Sigh. It wasn’t that long ago — three years, to be exact — when providing instant photos from Spring Training, through the glory of the Internet, was an enigma to be cherished.

Now there appears to be, according to a small but very vocal group of blog-readers and Twitter followers, an over-saturation of photos reporters are sending out to their home fan bases. Instead of bringing the Tweeple closer to the game, according to at least a couple of folks out there, the only thing we’re doing is grating on every last nerve of the very fans we’re trying to appease.

I know what you’re thinking. Media? Annoying? Not possible.

Sometimes, I long for the old days of 2009. Back then, posting photos on blogs was largely a new thing, at least it was for me. The first photo I ever posted was of ESPN’s Tim Kurkjian, as he prepared to do a live shot (from the waist up) from the Astros’ ballpark.


The second photo I ever posted was this, and it created a stir that took me a little bit off guard.

The general reaction: “OMG! THIS IS SO COOL! LOOK IT’S BAGWELL AND BERKMAN! I JUST LOVE THEM! PLEASE GIVE US MORE! PLEASE! PLEASE! PLEASE!

(And one other: “Who would have ever thought John Kruk would be the one without the mullet?”)

Anyhoo, as I read the reactions, I thought, hey, we might be on to something.

Three years later, alas, the photo craze has left some crying “Uncle,” or, using the expression I most prefer, “Eyes. Bleeding.”

For example, this guy gives us a play-by-play of insufferable Twitpics, in journal form. And this guy takes a relatively good-natured jab at beat writers and columnists who are, in his estimation, posting really bad Twitpics, whether they’re blurry, nondescript, or just plain boring.

And I’ve been told there is a new wave of whiners who are now protesting the latest three-headed monster: tweeting in-game Spring Training updates.

As I peruse these grievances, I can’t help but think 1) people have way too much time on their hands, or 2) they have way too much time on their hands, and they like to spend that time moaning about bad angles, blurry photos, shadows and other Spring Training hardships.

I, for one, will soldier on. After all, we’re giving the people what they want…well, most of the people. If posting photos on the Internet never existed, I shudder to think what you’d be missing. Such as:

Brett Wallace wiping sweat off his head during batting practice.


Or radio announcer Brett Dolan sporting a gigantic Phillies-issued press pass, which screams, “I forgot my season credential at home.”

This thing they gave Brett is so big, it’s reminiscent of a sign you’d wear in kindergarten after doing something well: “Brett ate all of his vegetables today.”

With no camera phone, I’d have no way of bringing you this display, on the elevator doors in the right field corner of the Phillies’ spring ballpark. That’s Brad Lidge, obviously, dropping to his knees just as the Phillies won the World Series in 2008. (Lidge’s exact words before he hit the ground: “We did it. Oh my God.”)


Bud Norris prefers that when you talk to him, you do so while tilting your head a full 90 degrees. Radio announcer Dave Raymond obliged, and the two had a lovely exchange before the Astros-Phillies game on Wednesday.


And lest we forget the standard general-manager-stands-behind-the-cage-chatting-with-a-player Spring Training shot. We’ve probably posted around 20 of these already. What? Too many?


Without the wonder of the Internet, I’d have no way to tell you that Bobby Meacham and Matt Downs laughed really hard about something during batting practice, and that I have no idea what was so funny.


ESPN.com’s Jayson Stark spent a lot of time on the Astros’ side of the field before the game, and this made a lot of people happy, including manager Brad Mills, Phillies broadcaster Chris Wheeler, and your friendly neighborhood blogger, who was there to capture the moment in all of its glory.

“Look like you’re pondering something really serious and deep,” I instructed Jordan Schafer. Here’s what I got.


“I’m making fun of people who make fun of people who post boring photos on Twitter,” I said to Jose Altuve. “Act boring.” Here’s the best he could do. (How can you not love this kid?)

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20 Comments

Pics like this are great….more of these and less play by play in-game tweets (from others) would be welcome. Keep up the pics

Please keep sending photos! Love them!

Why would anyone complain? Unless they do have way too much time on their hands. I read every blog and every tweet. Thank you for doing a fantastic job!!

Love it!!

I like this.

When journos learn about (or are allowed use) Instagram, then we’ll really start seeing some high art.

Well I guess I like boring stuff because I love your photos. I would even go so far as to say we need more!!!! Keep up the great work

Love everything you post…………so I won’t complain……………

Keep it up Alyson! I’m too busy to follow min. By min. Myself so I rely in you and Taggs. I am really thankful for pictures, updates and the rest. Now we have a GM that tweets! That’s awesome.

Excellent as usual!!! VERY funny!! Becky:) :) :) :)

I don’t mind the pics or the live in-game tweets. My only suggestion is that because most of us who follow you also follow McTaggart, Dolan, and Raymond, maybe you could all take turns posting the live tweets. Otherwise, we get the same posting four times every time something interesting happens. Other than that, I say carry on!

Thanks Kory…I know that is an issue for sure but I’m not sure there’s a feasible way to fix it. We’re not all sitting together and everyone is busy working during the games. We’re not hanging out and chatting amongst ourselves. When an announcement is made on the internal PA regarding injuries and such, we all tweet it. There wouldn’t be any way to coordinate it and not everyone follows all of us. However, on Tweetbot, you can make lists that “mute” certain people at certain times. So you could theoretically “mute” three people and just follow one during a game, and then “unmute” later, when the game is over, and go back to getting everyone’s tweets. Maybe you can try that.

keep ‘em coming, Directrix!!! love it!

Don’t see what the gripe is, keep it up Alyson (especially the lineup twitpics, need those)!

Thanks for all of the nice comments, everyone…the “detractors” definitely weren’t aiming their ire at me, no worries. My point of the blog was to take a little jab at them, while sending a gentle reminder that what might not be interesting to some people is very interesting to the local fan bases. For example, a photo of Altuve and Downs taking grounders at second base during morning workouts is not going to be interesting to someone who lives in, say, the upper Northwest and is a Mariners fan. But folks in Houston like to see that stuff. A photo of the manager giving his daily rundown with the media, in my opinion, is interesting to the people who follow the team, because it gives some insight as to how the local writers that they read every day gather the information. I don’t expect Orioles fans to feel the same sense of intrigue when viewing a photo of Mills speaking with McTaggart, Levine and other local reporters.

It would be nice if people would understand that just because they don’t find something interesting does not mean they represent everyone. That said, it’s all in good fun and no one is out to hurt anyone.

Allyson, I’m an old lady of 82 and Twitter, Blog,Facebook and some other links are the same as foreign words to me. However, I appreciate the photos you provide in whatever method you do it in. Remember there are those who are going to complain about everything.

Keep up the good work.

Mary

Don’t I know it, Mary! After we posted the blog a few days ago about an Astros staffer who devotes his free time to providing clean drinking water to orphans in third-world countries, a commenter took that opportunity to complain about the 106 losses last year :) Just makes you shake your head and laugh. Thanks for reading and following along! You are appreciated.

Echoing the crowd here…keep up the photos. As a transplanted Astros fan (whose “home town” team is the Pirates, according to Fox Sports), I love following the ‘Stros through your blog, and I make sure I see a game at Minute Maid Park every time I get back to Houston. Unfortunately, I won’t be there this summer, so I’m going to miss out on all the cool 50th anniversary giveaways.

Great blog post, Alyson. You’re a really funny gal — love the picture captions — laughed out loud a few times.
Some of us like the pictures; keep ‘em coming. (One can always scroll through them very quickly to get to the writing if they want.)

Love ‘em.

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