Houston Astros: A superfan’s account of adventure at the Mexico Series

Houston Astros and baseball fans alike during the Mexico Series (Photo by Azael Rodriguez/Getty Images)
Houston Astros and baseball fans alike during the Mexico Series (Photo by Azael Rodriguez/Getty Images) /

The Houston Astros had a successful matchup with the Angels in Monterrey, Mexico recently and a superfan has an interesting account of his trip. What’s up?

The Houston Astros recently partook in the Mexico Games in Monterrey, Mexico May 4-5.  They were successful, outscoring the Los Angeles Angels 24-6 through the whole series and barely had to break a sweat within the friendly confines of Estadio de Beisbol Monterrey.  They had 27 hits combined over the two games in comparison to just 14 for the Angels.

Wade Miley opened up the series while Justin Verlander closed it out and both did a solid job in holding the line.  Michael Brantley, Alex Bregman, Carlos Correa, Yuli Gurriel and George Springer all provided amazing star — plus bat power — to defeat the Angels handily.  Bregman was able to notch his second Grand Slam of the season in Game 2 at the top of the 5th inning.

As baseball extends itself beyond borders, even more, Monterrey is the perfect landing site for the Houston Astros to expand their brand.

It’s tough to tell what exactly both franchises — as well as the MLB — were looking for in terms of interest/turnstile count but both games averaged 17,896 fans to which in comparison to its capacity at 22,061, that means that the facility was at 81.1 percent of capacity the entire weekend.

I don’t know about you but I feel that’s a success and this could be the first of many games to be played by the Houston Astros in Monterrey.  Estadio de Beisbol Monterrey is one of the largest stadiums in Mexico as well as Latin America so that’s something to note.

In addition, former Houston Astros‘ catcher and current Spanish radio broadcaster Alex Trevino is from the area so I could only imagine it being an awesome homecoming for him.

But what was the experience like?  I’m sure many of us wanted to be there but I was able to catch up with my good friend Pepe Garza, a superfan also known as Toro 2.0, who had an opportunity to travel up and get a first-hand account.  What did he have to say?

Pepe and his friends taking part in the Mexico Series festivities:

Take a look at our conversation:

BP: What was your favorite experience about being in Monterrey?

PG: My favorite experience in Monterrey other than the convincing wins, would be witnessing how many Houston Astros fans traveled to the game.  There are a ton of béisbol fans in Monterrey and it was great to see such an awesome local turnout as well.  It was so beautiful there seeing the mountains and experiencing the culture.  Everyone that I came across was so friendly.

It was also my friend C.J.’s birthday on Cinco de Mayo so the Houston Astros came in the clutch and we celebrated all trip long!  She enjoyed being able to get up close and personal with the players, acquiring autographs and pics. We also ran into Julia Morales from AT&T Sportsnet and she was quite friendly, we were able to talk to her a bit and take a picture with her as well.

The Houston Astros were announced as the visitors and the Angels were the home team but you wouldn’t have been able to tell.  The crowd seemed to overwhelmingly favor the Houston Astros evident from them continuously belching out “Let’s go Astros!” to the often-familiar Josh Reddick “woooo” chants.

BP: I’m bonafide, self-certified foodie so you’ve got to lay it on me Pep, how was it?

PG:  The food was delicious and there are many American restaurants there in case you are wary of trying the taco stands.  Little Caesar’s, Burger King, McDonald’s, Buffalo Wild Wings and many more franchises were well-represented.  But traveling in, I preferred the local food and had some of the tastiest dishes you could imagine.

BP:  How about the happenings at the stadium?

PG:  The concessions at El Estadio de Béisbol were an experience within itself from paper cones filled with French Fries and popcorn chicken covered with chipotle sauce and Mexican cheese, to a foot-long, homemade tortilla burrito filled with shredded juicy beef, beans and spicy-hot green sauce if you dare!  Yum!  This one vendor was walking around selling Spanish peanuts and would add lime juice and hot sauce! He also served corn-in-a-cup to which I had it all.  And, of course, I have to note the dancing churros and the donut guy were quite entertaining.

Pepe and C.J. posing for a pic just before the start of the game:

BP:  What are your final thoughts?  Anything else you’d like to add?

PG:  C.J. and I have always been a die-hard Houston Sports fans.  She became a superfan with the Texans, especially when she met Toro 2.0!  Haha! I have had the opportunity to meet a multitude of super fans from around the world and it came full-circle within this trip.

Martin Aviles, an awesome superfan I met through social media about five years ago made this

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trip as well.  I actually had met him in person back in 2016 when the Houston Texans took on the Oakland Raiders at Estadio Azteca in Mexico City; so it was great to connect back with him during this trip.  He flew from Mexico City to Monterrey to meet up with us.

Hector Lozano, a Texans’ superfan from New York City also hung out with us as we met him back in December when the Texans took on the Jets.

C.J. and I flew to Harlingen, Texas and picked up Pit Guerrero, another friend of mine, in Reynosa, Mexico to drive the remaining two hours to Monterrey.

Houston is such an amazing city — this is where C.J. and myself were born and raised.  She’s also in another Astros‘ superfan group dubbed the “Big Hat Posse” with several of our other friends and she tends to grab all the limelight when she is in her Houston Astros‘ gear!

Based off of Pepe’s accounts, I’d have to say this trip was a success!

With as strong as attendance was during that series, I think this could be the start of something regular for the Houston Astros as it’s a great way to get more people acclimated to baseball and certainly helps Monterrey tourism thrive even more.

One thing’s for sure, there’s no question how unwavering Pepe’s fandom is for our Houston Astros as well as our other teams.  If I ask him where is he going next, he’ll probably grin and give a terrific answer.  I’ll certainly be on standby to help tell his next story!

Next. The pros and cons of being a Houston Sports fan. dark

Where can you find Toro 2.0 on social media?  Follow him at @swaguy34 on Twitter/Instagram and Barkley Flamenco on Facebook.

Let’s go Astros!