18 Innings Of Baseball
Saturday, March 10, 2012
It was a long day of baseball for the White Sox and Camelback Ranch Glendale employees today with a split, day/night doubleheader.
I woke up at 6 am and headed into the ballpark kinda dreading the length of the coming day.
Then, Art of the Pale Hose stopped by and said excitedly, “This is great. 18 innings of baseball. This is perfect.”
Put things in perspective, although a 7 am to 11 pm day still is a long one …
Like they say about rain delays, doubleheaders and extra inning games, if you have to play it, you might as well win it.
And win it the White Sox did in the afternoon marquee as Ken Williams Jr.’s infield single scored the winning run in the bottom of the ninth inning as the White Sox rallied from a 2-0 deficit to beat the Texas Rangers, 3-2 in dramatic fashion.
From yesterday, was seeing Paul Konerko’s dad bring Paulie’s son down to say hello to PK on the field before the game.
I mentioned yesterday that former Coach Joe Nossek liked to stump PK with daily trivia questions. Here was Joe’s from Saturday …
Name the only man to catch two Perfect Games …
Credit to bench coach Mark Parent, who nailed it. PK was still thinking the last I saw him pregame today. Answer later.
Speed of Play
I had time Friday morning to talk with minor league shortstop Tyler Saladino.
Saladino, who arrived in Glendale for minor league mini camp, has earned some time up with the big league club, joining the team for the last three days.
He talked about his view of the game from the dugout, how it differed from Class A ball and what he tried to learn during his time “up.”
“The game moves so fast,” he said. “And while you see it and know it, you can’t really prepare for it until your brain processes it. For example, at Texas the other day, a guy hit a routine ground ball to Esco (Escobar). He charged it and made a strong throw across the diamond and just beat the runner. To a fan watching, they might have thought that was a simple play, but I went ‘Wow.’”
Saladino explained that in A ball, there was only one or two guys you had to worry about on a play like that, that a shortstop could sit back and comfortably make the throw and record the out. But not in the speed of the big league game.
“If you sit back on that ball and not charge it, he beats it out,” Saladino said. “You can tell yourself that, but you need to see it and feel it.
“Even if I don’t play an inning in a game or get an at-bat, being at these major league games is a great opportunity to learn,” he said. “I have to take advantage of it. And the coaches up here, they may know that one small thing, one little piece of advice, that is the difference in a play, a game, even a season.”
He also offered a funny glimpse of minor league baseball from last season. Saladino and his roommates pooled their money for a television set for the apartment. There was a 90-day return policy on the TV, so by mid May, they had taken it back.
“After that we sat around and talked at night,” he laughed. “One guy could play the guitar really well, and I went down to the music store and bought a lukelele. We’d play music. Pretty soon, we didn’t miss the television set.”
So is it a bad sign when your boss – and I mean the big boss, Jerry Reinsdorf – remarks about your shoes?
Here’s how they look, see what you think ….
My response: “At least they will be able to identify the body.”