September 2009

9/24 Back in action

I really had no opportunity to rehab anywhere with all the Minor League seasons being wrapped up. With the different pitchers on our staff being pushed back, and Teddy and Harden missing turns, we had to dip into the bullpen more, so there was no way for me to get a sim game in. I stood in against Jeff Stevens and saw 10 pitches in a bullpen when we were in St. Louis, so that’s all I’ve seen as far as pitching goes. I’ve just been hitting and taking BP. Sometimes it’s better if you try to keep it simple and don’t over-think things.

The Brewers knew I hadn’t played in a long time, so they came after me with a fastball in my first at-bat, and I was able to keep it fair down the line.

There’s going to be pain in my foot until the season’s over. Sometimes you need to out-milligram the other team. At this time of year, the jars of anti-inflammatory start emptying out to try to survive the last couple weeks of the season. I’m sure if you went to any team, it’d be the same.

– Reed

9/14 September callups

It’s September, and there are a lot of guys here. We had very few September callups when I was in Toronto. We had a really small roster in Spring Training, and usually a lot of September callups were the same guys you would see early in spring – guys who are on the 40-man roster. In this organization, you get to see a lot of guys in Spring Training, and now you see the same faces around. There are some good opportunities, not only for the players out there but the organization as well.

Look at K-Rod. He came up for the Angels in September [2002] and helped them in the playoffs. You get a first look at guys who are possibly going to be in the organization for a long time. It’s exciting to see those guys in this atmosphere as opposed to the Spring Training atmosphere. I think Lou and everyone in the front office can get a good look at how guys handle Chicago in general. Going to play in a big league organization somewhere else is one thing, but when you come here and you’re playing on this field in front of an electric crowd — not everybody can play under those circumstances. It’s a good opportunity to see which guys you think are going to be the future of the club and which guys will be best suited to play somewhere else.

You see some other organizations rebuilding or going the young route and trying to cut salary. With those teams, you’ll see a lot of older, veteran players moving out. Financially, it makes more sense. Here, I think they’ll continue to spend money to put the best team on the field.

– Reed

9/3 One and a half legs & Font’s catch

I think when my foot injury first happened, they said it would be four to six weeks. I had high hopes and said, “Oh, I’ll push this thing and I’ll be back in three weeks.” It hasn’t worked out like that. That’s been the frustrating side. I’m trying not to put dates on anything anymore. When I’m able to run and jog without pain that will cause me to limp and cause another injury, then I’m going to play. I know when I do come back in the next week or so, I know there will still be pain but that’s something everybody’s dealing with. Nobody’s completely healthy when you play this many games. Everybody has aches and pains. It’s just a matter of being able to function. Once I know I can get back and help this team win, I’m going to be back in the lineup. Sticking me out in center field right now on one and a half legs, is not going to help anything.

I’ve heard Lou say I have a lot of “energy.” That’s always the way I’ve played. Through high school and college, I had coaches who catered to that style of play — just breaking up double plays and doing the little things that, in a sense, could fire up the team but also help the team win. If there’s one out and you hit a ground ball to short and you hustle down to first and they can’t turn a double play and you keep the inning alive and the next guy hits a home run, those are big plays. Some guys sometimes don’t feel like running hard to first, but when you keep innings alive like that, good things can happen. Your teammates appreciate it. Instead of a solo home run, you could have a two-run shot.

Font’s play Wednesday, on a scale of 1 to 10, I’d say it was about a 7 or 8. A normal-sized person, it would take him from second base to where Font caught the ball about seven or eight steps. Font took like 30 steps because he has little mini steps. I guess we can call it a 9 then because that would add to the degree of difficulty. He had to go twice as far as I would have. It was an impressive play, especially when you could see the ball snowcone and he re-gripped it to make sure he had it. It was a nice play.

– Reed

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