Texting and driving and texting and batting practice do not mix. ~Will Ohman.
The White Sox had another social media night event at the ballpark last night. In addition to getting to see the Sox take batting practice, there was a pre-game parade around the warning track for the fans who participated as well as may giveaways throughout the night. It was Ladies’ Night at the park where women could get manicures and massages around.
Joe Crede was on hand and it was also Roger “The SodFather” Bossard bobblehead night. In addition to signed items from players for social media night, there were two special prizes: a chance to sit in the Gold Coast Ticket club for an inning with Joe Crede and a chance to change a base during the game.
The first giveaway of the night was the opportunity to change a base. AND I WON IT! Since I was going to be changing a base during the game, I would not get a chance to participate in the parade. Which really was completely fine since changing a base meant being on the field during the game.
Before the base changing, we watched some batting practice. In the past when I have had the chance to see the Sox take batting practice, I have usually been in right field. Today, I decided to go hang out in left field. Juan Nieves, told us fans to watch out for balls and to be on the look out for them so we wouldn’t get hit. When he said this, we were all paying attention and at the same time watching the pitchers play catch with each other.
It is always fun to see the warm ups the players go through. After a bit of time, Dayan Viciedo was up and taking swings. He was hitting them pretty far. One of the balls he hit was sailing pretty far into left field and it looked like it was going to bounce on the fence before it got to the outfield. That ball bounced alright. Right off of my forehead and then a few rows behind where I was standing. It was enough of an odd hitting of me that even the pitchers who were nearby looked concerned.
Before you freak out, I am completely fine and was at the time. I didn’t even get a bump on my forehead, which is a good thing as I was immediately wondering how I was going to cover a bruise up. Luckily, many great fans were around to check on me to make sure I was ok and I was. I do think a few were also wondering if I was going to bow out of changing the base.
My favorite part of this whole getting hit in the head by a home run hit by the Cuban Tank? Will Ohman asking me if I was ok as he and the other pitchers were running in the outfield. I gave him a two thumbs-up and said was fine.
After watching BP, I then went to the field to meet with Jose to discuss what I would be doing changing the base. That was going to happen between the fourth and fifth innings. It turned out to be a pretty simple thing. Jose did joke about how much I would have to pay for walking on the field. I also got to meet Roger Bossard.
That was super cool. Both Roger and Jose gave me advice to not be nervous and to ignore the 30,000 fans. When Roger mentioned the number of fans, I actually said “as if there will be 30,000 people here.” Harsh I know, but attendance has been down and fans just haven’t been coming out of late to the park.
I’ve been on warning track behind home plate, etc before, but the teams were always away and not around. Last night was different. The teams were warming up. Ozzie Guillen, Omar Vizquel, and Miguel Cabrera were talking behind home plate. I was steps away from them and it was just electric.
Anyway, the base changing was so so fun. No other way to describe it. It was fast, totally painless and the best part? I didn’t notice any of the crowd at all when I was out there. I was just focused on changing the base and getting it done in a timely manner. I really didn’t hear the crowd. As I was running back to the home dugout after changing the base, I did get a chance to say hello to Juan Pierre and he was so nice.
Even though the outcome of the game was less than desirable, I have to say I had one of the best nights ever. No, it wasn’t fun that my forehead connected with a ball hit by Dayan Viciedo, but getting the opportunity to change a base was so amazing. Not only was that fun, but watching the game from near the camera well by the Sox dugout was amazing as well. Granted I was a bit leery of foul balls coming that way and potentially getting hit again, but that didn’t happen.
Oh and Will’s quote from above, that came right before I got hit. Funny about that, but I wasn’t tweeting at the time. At least I couldn’t since my phone’s battery died. I would have gotten more pictures if the phone battery. Maybe I will get a chance to do this again in the future.