Friday, April 01, 2005

Play Ball!

Sunday night, right after i get back from snowboarding in Idaho with my pop, you know where i'm gonna be. Sittin in front of whatever tv i can find watching baseball. thats right folks, the game we all grew up playing begins a new season sunday night starting with the yanks/sox. This time of year invokes visions of snoballs (or sno cones...if your not from louisiana) after little league practice, ice cream, big league chew, and little league heroic stories. Since most of us , if not all of us, played a little ball when we were young, i would like to open up the floor for some little league stories. I'll even open it up for older softball leagues.

So when I was little, I wasn't agressive. I LOVED to go out and play, I even loved practice, but i wasn't the most aggressive kid on the field. (my mom once even called my dad from one of my basketball games because she was so excited when i got 3 fouls) So anyway, we were having practice one day and i'm out in left field and my mom is watching me practice. (yes, my mom was so dedicated that she watched me practice) AAANYWAYS shes watching and theres a ball smacked in the gap between left and center. well i always had wheels so i booked after it, and i'm running and running and its jjjjuuuust out of the reach of my glove so my mom sees me do a full extension dive and i caught it. now my mom was so excited she couldn't contain herself. her boy was being aggressive. after practice i was walking over to her and she's like "jeremy!! way to go dive for that ball! that was great!!" and my reply was " mom...i tripped on a root." seriously. i had bit it on a root.

okok one more. I'm not exactly sure how old i was, but i couldn't have been more than 10. But i pulled off a play that major league guys have trouble doing. It was the only time i ever had the opportunity to do so, and it was soo perfect...

Man on third, 1 out. i'm up at the plate. i guess i wasn't exactly an rbi machine, so my third base coach calls me to a little meeting. i go up and he's like "jeremy, paul is running on the pitch from third. bunt it." A SQUEEZE PLAY! it was the most exciting play in baseball. do or die. if i can't get the bat on the ball and lay down a good bunt, my boy on third is toast. and when your in little league, lets be honest, we dont' do a whole lot of bunting. its almost always swing away...unless you stink and the pitcher stinks and the coach keeps giving you the "take" sign (the one that goes across the chest. it was always the same) so it was like a battle of who was worse...the pitcher or the batter. but this...THIS..was the squeeze play. i lived for this. so i get up there, i'm acting like i'm gonna plaster this ball into the next ball field. i'm staring down the pitcher. i'm wiggling that bat around, flexing my little forearms. he goes into his motion. i havn't changed a thing. he rares back to throw. still i'm acting like i'm gonna punish this ball. the ball leaves his hand, screaming towards home plate. i see out of the corner of my eye, Paul is dashing towards home. its now or never. i pull that bat down, square around. the ball hits my bat, i pull the bat back a 'tad to deaden it, and the ball rolls right down the third base line. paul practically jumps over the ball, and doesn't even have to slide. it was perfect. i didn't even get thrown out at first. coach had put his trust in my abilities, and i came through. i don't even remember if we won the game....did it really matter?

ok guys, lets hear some stories. leav'm in the comments.

-JJ

16 comments:

Lauren said...

I peed during my softball game once..lol...well I THINK it was accidental....

kenny said...

The one I still laugh at is only about 2 years ago. Isbell, Baker, Henegar and myself are at a local field near Matt's 1st house in westchester. We're playing a little 2v2 softball. Fun stuff. So, I'm up and swing away and this ball goes so high and so far, it comes screaming down, almost vertically over the left field fence and hits a parked car in the driver's side door. Let me just state again that this was a softball. It was hilarious. We all did the good Christian thing and retrieved the ball and kept on playing as if nothing had happened.

Jennifer said...

Not that this will surprise anyone, but in my two years of softball, I didn't see much action. I was what you might call...a bench warmer or, when lucky, a rightfielder. Too bad 10 year old girls never hit the ball into right field.

BSC said...

I used to hold the Oklahoma state record for hit batsmen in a season, til one of my best friends broke it the next year just to piss me off.

Also, I could never see the ball either in the outfield or at the plate until it was about 4 feet in front of me. I got a lot of busted lips and noses before I got prescription sunglasses.

Matt Pinson said...

I had never hit a homerun until my junior year of high school. With the wind blowing out about 20 mph, I hit a real high fly ball, but I knew with the wind that it had a chance. I watched it all the way out. I watched it so intently that I completely missed first base and had to come back and touch it.

The Future said...

Whew, I have a lot. In fact, as you can see, I have my 3rd grade minor league picture for my profile. Little League was the greatest. I'm disappointed when I hear that some boys don't give it a chance.

I think my 2 most memorable times were winning the city championship (1st place out of 50-60 city teams) or hitting my first and only home run.

I have more, and in the future plan on doing a blog about why Pepsi sponsors me, so look for that on my site.


And, I'm not sure I'll watch that game Sunday night- now I can't stand both teams!! But I still think the caveman's cool. Anyone who roots against Johnny Damon is a commie.

Anonymous said...

well, Zach, I will say that I will be rooting against Damon. It feels almost wrong cuz he looks like Jesus, but I just can't root for the Sox.
Anyways, I have several stories from my years of softball, but I will share a very painful one. It was a really big game (well, as big as they can get in a division called "Ponytails":)) And, this one particular game, I happened to be playing catcher. It was a big play and the batter hits the ball right through the infield and scores a run. However, in that process, she threw her bat and as I was standing up and taking off my mask, the bat happened to hit me right across the jaw. OUCH!! I, of course, start crying. The umpire didn't see it happen and he actually thought I was crying because I was an overemotional girl and they just scored a run. Ha! My jaw wasn't broken but I had a nice little bruise and a lot of pain!
~kristi

The Juice said...

damon is the only red sox i like. ever since the sox won the alcs i havn't liked them. and ive always hated the yankees.

kenny said...

I bleed pinstripes. Blue and white.

J-Wild said...

A story from me and then one about my sister:

I slide into first base once while playing "Daddy Pitch" in Texas. My dad was the first base coach, he picked me up and said "You NEVER slide into first base!" I remember that moment like it was yesterday (I was 10).

I was speedy, but couldn't catch so I was a right fielder and I ran ALL OVER the place. Well I hit a "single" into the gap and due to the poor fielding of the other team, my single became a two run in the park home-run, complete with a slide into home plate with the catcher dropping the ball...it was awesome!

My sister was playing tee-ball and she was up to bat and hit a triple. When she was advanced home everyone gave her a big applause and she ran up to my parents in the stands and said "See that girl over there (she was on the opposite team in the outfield) I want shoes like hers (they were pink)."

Mr. A. said...

Believe it or not, I made the All-Star team my second year of Little League. I'm in left field when the other team's big hitter [no doubt one of the first juicers] smashes a towering shot. I go to the fence, stretch the arm [probably shut my eyes], and make the catch to rob the dude of a three-run homer. When I finally get my chance to come to the plate [down by four, but the bases loaded], the Coach pulls me out for a pinch-hitter who fakes two consecutive bunts while the runners each steal, scoring two of the runners, before stiking out to end the game. So, I didn't ever get to swing the bat, which may have been the best thing.

Anonymous said...

Juice, I don't think either of those stories comes close to the time you took it in the face in intramurals!
Now THAT's taking one for the team!
Go Bad News Bears!!
:)
~Weave

kenny said...

What a wonderful trouncing the Yanks gave the BoSox last night...

Kate said...

Unfortunately, I never played baseball/softball on a team. My dad taught me the "right way" to throw and catch a baseball - and he, my brother, and I would play in our backyard quite a bit. Since I learned with a baseball, I could never play softball - it was too big to catch and throw. I miss my mitt...I think it was actually my dad's circa 1950-something. And we played with a heavy wooden bat - very cool crack when you connected with the ball.
As a side note - I grew up a Mets fan (my grandmother has to hear the games and I remember her watching the scrambled tv channel for hours - now she watches on tv and turns down the sound to hear the radio broadcast) - but now that I'm married I usually only watch the Yankees.

Tidmore said...

So I can't remember alot about my teeball days, but my greatest B-Ball related memories are:

A) sitting at a park in abilene on a swing talking to some girls when I hear someone say "Who's Jeremy Jackson?" And I say "my roomate why?" And they reply "Cause he's at the ER, he got hit with a ball in the eye" And then i got to spend several hours in the ER

and 2) After a Mets game some Shiloh guys were sitting waiting for the Elevated train and doing what we always do, try to spit on the electric rail, when we realize there are cars and people below us and start joking about how we might have spit on someone, and the 2 undercover cops coming over and pulling 3 of us aside and give us tickets for spitting because we kept laughing about maybe having spit on someone. And the worst part was when they asked us what we were doing in NYC and we had to tell them we were with a Christian camp doing working with kids in the bronx.

Those are my Baseball memories

The Future said...

Yo trav- forgot you were Jerm's roommate Freshman year.