Sunday, January 29, 2012
Standing room only crowd for the SLUGGERS seminar: Melton w/Big Frank, Joe Crede and Kittle – which started with Kittle and Melton cracking jokes (Melton said Frank and Joe were running late because “They’re probably up in the suite stuffing their faces, with Kittle adding “They’re eating lobster.”). Kittle talks up the White Sox Fantasy Camp. Joe and Frank show up – and Melton realizes he and Joe are wearing the same shirt.
-BEST OF FRANK:
> “I’m not worried about the Sox this year. They’ll be fine. Robin’s a steady man, a good man, he’ll be great for this ballclub.”
> On being such a great hitter: “I came up in baseball with the mentality of just getting hits, and I never changed that, but I also took my walks.”
> On steroids: “It’s a shame. Some guys wanted to be the best ever, and they got greedy. It’s called karma. Use what God gave you.”
> Advice to a young baseball player: “Have fun in your childhood. Just play and have fun. If you love it and keep going, then you can ramp it up starting around 13-14.”
> Toughest pitcher: reliever Jeff Nelson. “He was like 6’7″, dropped down with a nasty breaking ball. Could never figure that guy out.”
> Nastiest pitch he ever saw: “Pedro Martinez’ change-up. It would drop straight down like a split-fingered fastball. I’d be like “That was a split-finger fastball, right? Nope.”
-First PG 13 comment by Kittle: 11:08 CT. Also said his toughest pitcher was third-base coach Jim Leyland, who threw batting practice for the Sox then. (Ba-dum-bum…)
BEST OF CREDE:
> Toughest pitchers: “Mariano Rivera…like I’m sure a lot of guys say.” And Jose Contreras when he was with the Yankees: “He was throwing 95-96 with a splitter for strikes. So he throws one of those, and I’m like ‘I don’t know if this is going to work out, if I have to face guys like this every day.”
> On the sequence of events during the infamous AJ play in the ’05 ALCS vs. the Angels (when Joe was at-bat and knocked in the winning run): “I thought he struck out, then he’s safe and I’m thinking ’I hope it’s not AJ running the bases.’ They bring in Ozuna to pinch run, and I knew he would steal, so I took some pitches. One of them was a good pitch, and I thought maybe I missed my pitch, but I still knew I had a chance to end the game. The guy hung a slider, and I got the hit.”
> On coaching for the White Sox: “Down the road, that’s something I’d think about. I actually just interviewed for a coaching job back home…maybe I should start there.”
> “I wouldn’t have won a Silver Slugger or made an All-Star team without ‘Walk’ (Greg Walker.)” (With Frank adding, “Joe was Mr. Clutch, and he should’ve won a Gold Glove.”)
> On steroids: “I popped M&Ms.”
> Joking to a fan: “Just wait back there for your butt-whooping.”
> Fan congratulates Frank for his “award-winning performance” in the movie “Mr. Baseball.”
> Another fan tells Frank, “I’m honored to breathe the same air as you” …before saying her favorite player of all time is Joe Crede.
> Swear that Joe preened when a woman started her question with “Crede, you’re gorgeous.”
> And finally, Frank’s reply when Melton said he should’ve been a three-time MVP instead of two: “I love you, man.”
SoxFest = LoveFest.