Today the team travels by bus to another far destination in the north. I have no desire to drive 8 hours round trip to watch the big kid sit in the bullpen. Naturally, I have plenty to do, so he's on his own. Good luck guys!
Yesterday the game was postponed because of rain. Buddy was elated. Not just elated, but joyful, thrilled, busting with energy, happy, and smiling. it was like the old days when each Christmas, he would smile and say sweetly: "this has been the best Christmas ever..."
This happiness is in direct contrast to the 'good ole days' when he would basically throw a tantrum if it rained...what...rain? why, God, why?! This is true, when there was a rain out, he would be inconsolable. I used to think that it was time to call the pediatric psychiatrist and get this one under control. I would look at him and think...dude...there is plenty of baseball ahead...mark my words. And I was right... 26 games in 26 days...that's a heck of a lot of baseball. However, now that he is in the bullpen, he is not in every inning like grade school and high school when he played first base, so he has had to adjust.
And adjust, he has....it seems that the bullpen guys are a bunch of characters that are not to be believed. They sit there either chewing seeds and gum or tobacco. There is a great deal of spitting action as they either use an empty bottle or cup. Sometimes they don't use anything at all. I used to think that Buddy had more saliva than any other kid that I knew. He could spit on command...hit dimes on the street with his sputum (he was that accurate). I had to admonish him on a number of occasions when there were sputum wads on the garage floor as he would let one ride before he walked into the door. It is gross and unsanitary. But is seems to be a baseball thing. I rarely see a football player spitting...or a coach...have you ever witnessed Joe Paterno spitting into a cup? Nope!
Spitting isn't the only thing that the Bullpen guys do. They adopted a frog during college. The frog would come out to the bp during practices and games. He was their pet....kind of a good luck charm.
They tell stories of one-up-man-ship...who has the grossest story...who has the best baseball story...who is the sickest athlete....who struck the best player out in the league...I have yet to hear about girls being mentioned in the bp. I think that this one is closely guarded and not for a mother's ears.
They do anything to entertain themselves during the long games as they try to stay awake and pay attention to the game. Something tells me that they often have no clue about what is happening during any given game because they are chatting, humming, spitting, chewing and dreaming about the day when their number would be called in the World Series to close the deciding game....hopefully it won't be raining...