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Scenes from Spring Training: “Ozzie Guillen! Look at me!”

Mar 3, 2011, 5:30 PM EDT


So I slid down close to the White Sox dugout when I saw Ozzie Guillen sitting there like that. Figured I’d take his picture.  I took this one and a couple other ones of him hanging out there.  Then a guy a couple seats down said “want me to get his attention for you?”  I said “no, that’s cool,” figuring that it’s probably not kosher to bug the manager in the middle of the game.  The guy next to me had made up his mind already, however:

Guy: “Ozzie! Yo! Look up here!”

Guillen: [not taking his eyes off the field] “Nah.”

Oh well.  Other stuff from today’s game:

Forgot to mention this earlier, but when I was in the White Sox clubhouse there was a table set up where two women from a company called Elevee Custom Clothing were handing out cards and catalogs to players. The deal: busy players get measured by them once and then they buy their clothes over the phone or the Internet all year. Convenient, I suppose.  I snagged a catalog because I thought it might be cool to dress like a ballplayer. There was nothing in there for me, but tell me: am I nuts, or is that Dan Haren modeling?

Hey, good for him. Handsome man. Glad he has a second gig lined up.

I think it’s pretty lame to hear reporters complain about the lunch spread the ballpark puts out for them, but today was kinda nuts: creole chicken and beef barley soup. I’m sure it was tasty, but it was pushing 80 degrees today and that stuff sounded all hot and complicated. I went to the concourse for a Chicago dog with crazy dayglo green relish and a Deschutes pale ale. I chose … wisely.

I teased it with the pic of Adam Dunn playing first earlier, but it was a very special day defensively speaking. Not only did the Donkey have first base, but Jack Cust was playing left for the the Mariners.  Sadly neither one of them embarrassed themselves out there. I had my hopes up.

I made a point to get here early this morning because with the Mariners coming to Camelback that means Ichiro, and that means a Japanese press contingent that, I’m told anyway, is even bigger than Matsui’s. A press corps that big means space in the box would be at a premium.  Sadly, no Ichiro and no Japanese press corps. I like those guys. I kinda missed ’em today.

Tony Pena came in to pitch for the Sox. I was all excited because I had never seen a converted middle infielder pitch in person before. I enjoyed it for a whole inning until I realized that it was the other Tony Pena. I should probably start paying more attention to random relief pitchers.

It occurred to me that I’ve seen Adam Dunn play in person six times and that each time I’ve seen him — mostly when he was with the Reds, but once when he was with the Nats — he hit a home run. No homer for Dunn today, however. The streak, she died.

And tell me, this ain’t bad for a little pocket camera, is it?

Teahen took that one for ball two low, then flew out to center the next pitch.

That pic made me happy. What makes me sad: this was my last game and thus the baseball portion of my trip is over. If I didn’t have a wife and kids back home who I miss very much, I’d stay until the teams broke camp. Then I’d follow them around until NBC decided that the hotel bills were getting out of hand.  But I do have a wife and kids back home and NBC would probably suspend my expense account by April 10th, so I fly home tomorrow.

I’ll have a big honkin’ Scenes from Spring Training retrospective up before I catch my flight tomorrow morning.  But for now I reluctantly bid the ballparks adieu.  Thanks for travelling with me, everybody.

  1. oldtimefamilybaseball - Mar 3, 2011 at 5:40 PM

    And is that Ryan Braun next to Haren, not wearing an Affliction tee?

  2. jonbeckmann - Mar 3, 2011 at 5:41 PM

    It sure looks like Haren to me. Also, I think that’s Braun in the shot on the right.

  3. yankeesfanlen - Mar 3, 2011 at 5:46 PM

    Good lighting on that ball two shot. Your sensor must have kicked it up to 1/1000sec. Sun just over your right shoulder, pretty far west in the time zone so I’d say 2-3PM, 80 degrees verified by shirts off on the grass. Focal point at home, didn’t quite get the aperature open enough.
    Good work!

    • cur68 - Mar 3, 2011 at 8:56 PM

      len; are you a spy?

      • yankeesfanlen - Mar 4, 2011 at 8:52 AM

        Either a spy, Brian Cashman, or The Mentalist, according tyo today’s reports. Really Old Gator’s agent imbedded in New Jersey, most dangerous assignment on earth.

      • cur68 - Mar 4, 2011 at 1:22 PM

        C’mon, admit it, I won’t tell; you’re Jack Bauer.

  4. Mr. Jason "El Bravo" Heyward - Mar 3, 2011 at 5:49 PM

    So far this has been the most baseball-related fun I’ve ever had in Feb/March. That’s b/c this is my first Spring that I’ve been following HBT, so thank you for getting me ever more riled up for some mothaf@ckin baseball!

  5. jh0088 - Mar 3, 2011 at 5:54 PM

    How was that a ball? Low? It was right at the knee!

    Must be Jerry West behind the mound trying to move Spring Training games along.

  6. ukraineshaqfan - Mar 3, 2011 at 9:06 PM

    I believe Tony Pena the converted infielder is with the Red Sox.

  7. Davidw7 - Mar 4, 2011 at 3:56 AM

    Unless it’s the angle, that ball should have been called a strike. Great shot though and one to be proud off.

    I say fly the wife and kids out, Craig. NBC won’t mind :)

    It’s been a great journey by all account though. Thanks for sharing (and making us jealous)

  8. pauleee - Mar 4, 2011 at 10:27 AM

    Good thing Haren’s got a fallback gig going. The way he’s pitched for the Angels so far, he may indeed need to quit his day job!

  9. simplicitymadecomplex - Mar 5, 2011 at 2:44 PM

    Ryan Braun not only plays a mean game of baseball [on all sides of the ball] but he is also a designer of his own brand of duds.

    Thus given his appearance [in his uniform (bestest period), in the above photo (lookin’ boss), in his briefs (a girlie thing for sure: Jim Palmer beware) and his everyday outfits (just guessin’)] I’m predictin’ that Mr. Bruan [not related to the Braun Appliances family] will do really, really well in the fashion industry after baseball [if not during].

    Nothing like owning an entire “clothing line” from design, to modeling, to sales to delivery, eh ?

    I’m also guessin’ that many of his buyers only wish that they looked “anything” close to Ryan Braun. Oh well if ya can’t be the guy then wearing one of his “creations” probably works to an acceptable level.

    Right now life is worth livin’ for one Ryan Braun, for soooooooo many others not so much.

    But hey I want me some R.B. designer undies and his .307/22/38/129 line on my fantasy team. The 22 represents his stolen base total.

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