Sunday, March 20, 2011
Today marked about the fourth time this spring that I have written a blog post and hit save only to have it disappear. So as I sat down to yet again re-write a post, my wife suggested, “Why don’t you just type it in word first.” Good advice.
Several White Sox players and staff, not to mention many, many fans, headed over to watch the Blackhawks 2-1 win over the Coyotes just an hour or so after our Cactus League game ended. A.J. Pierzynski dropped the ceremonial first puck, and he spent time looking for a BHawks jersey to wear to taunt the Coyotes. “I did wear my Blackhawks cap today,” Pierzynski offered, admitting he doubted the Coyotes would allow him to done the sweater of the opposing team. Also scheduled to attend the game were Gordon Beckham, Giant Aaron Rowand, Sergio Santos and both Danks brothers, among others.
Today’s news focused on Jake Peavy. The Sox pitcher has been shut down for a day or so because of soreness (described as excessive discomfort) in his right rotator cuff. He has been given medicine help to fight the tendinitis and will be re-evaluated in 24-48 hours. Peavy said he might play catch tomorrow and was not ready to rule out his start on Thursday, but manager Ozzie Guillen said postgame that Peavy was unlikely to make the start.
Several years ago in Tucson my family ventured to a spring training game. Sitting in the outfield, I watched on television from the press box as Carl Everett’s home run soared right toward my wife and three small children. Being a soccer player, my wife’s reaction was to kick out her leg and deflect the ball with her foot – all of which was caught on TV by the WGN cameras. She limped for days.
Well, history does repeat itself. Today, my daughter, son and two friends headed out from the safety of the net behind home plate to right field late in the game. My daughter lives in fear of getting hit by a foul ball. Once again, with WGN cameras running, a home run sped right toward them. They ducked and scattered and the ball bounded off the rocks right back to where they were sitting.
Buehrle Monday night at SD, Jackson on Tuesday at Sea and Danks Wednesday vs. LAD.
I took in Saturday’s game at Oakland as a fan, sitting above our dugout with my dad.
A few random observations …
Neat how A’s 3B Kevin Kouzmanoff played catch with a young fan from the stands during pregame.
Always love the fan reaction – no matter where we are – to Omar Vizquel (cheers) and A.J. Pierzynski (boo’s).
“What’s the matter with AJ,” A’s fans shouted, “he’s a bum,” others answered in a call and response. Soon the many Sox fans in attendance had enough. “He may be a bum, but he’s OUR bum,” one challenged.
At Salt River Field on Thursday, I exited the ballpark with a thousand other fans to see Vizquel quietly sitting on a bench outside the ballpark. “Waiting for your ride?” I asked the future Hall of Famer. “Yes,” he smiled and laughed, shades on, unnoticed.
Great to see Bert Campaneris and Ferguson Jenkins but am I really that old?
Sox fans joked with third base coach Jeff Cox about Paul Konerko’s nifty base running on Friday night.
“Yeah, and you all are telling me, ‘Don’t send Konerko,'” Cox laughed in reply.
Funniest thing that happened on Saturday involved coach Mike Gellinger.
Two strikes into the first inning, umpires realized the White Sox didn’t have a first base coach (Harold had the game off). Always the good soldier, Gelly headed out of the dugout. But as he headed out, he caught his toe on the dugout step and went down in a heap to a collective gasp (and then laughter) from the crowd.
“I just hoped nothing would show up on You Tube,” Gelly said this morning, adding that if it did, he had an explanation handy. “I was just doing it to keep guys loose.
“The guys in the bullpen thought somebody pushed me out of the dugout.”
They say when you go to a baseball game, you always will see something you never saw before. True for me on Saturday. I have never seen an umpire hurt himself by making too aggressive of an “out” call at first base. He almost punched himself out, but luckily was able to remain in the game and is day-to-day, like us all.
Everyone should sit close to the diamond at least once to hear Jake Peavy grunt and talk to himself on the mound. Worth the price of admission.
The toughest three outs of any Cactus League game are ALWAYS the last three.
Out With A Bang
As pans and trays loudly crashed to the cement floor of the White Sox kitchen at lunchtime, a smart aleck offered:
“Hey, did someone drop their glove?”