Fathers Day QA

Father's Day Q&A1.JPG

I’m going right to your questions. I’ll try to cover all of them, but if I miss yours, please post it again. I promise to answer.
 
I was asked why I chose the song, “Can’t Be Touched,” to play over the PA when I come to bat. It was the 2000 season in Anaheim and I was struggling at the plate. So I was looking for a song to listen to that would motivate me. Roy Jones, Jr. is my favorite boxer, so before a game one day I listened to his recording of “Can’t Be Touched.” I went 3-for-4 that day and ever since then it’s been my song.
 
One young man asked if he could be a catcher even though he is left-handed. He said he was told all his life he couldn’t do it, so he gave it up. Coaches never should tell a kid he can’t do something that he really wants to do. He can be whatever he wants to be. There aren’t any left-handed catchers in the big leagues, but that doesn’t mean there CAN’T be. It means it’s going to be harder for a lefty. And that’s no reason not to do something you really want to do.
 
Several people asked about the play the other day at the plate in the ninth inning. Jack Taschner was pitching. The game was tied. There was a man on third. The batter hit a fly ball to left field. Freddie Lewis threw a bullet to the right side of home plate. With the runner bearing down, I knew I had a split-second to grab the ball and swipe. The ball hit my glove but didn’t stay in. The umpire called the runner out, then saw the ball on the ground and changed his call.
 
I watched the video afterward. If I get the same play today, I’d do the same thing. It’s the only play. If you wait to secure the ball in your glove, the guy’s safe anyway. The truth is, I thought the guy was safe even if the ball had stayed in my glove. We were going to catch a break. That was a tough day all around. I didn’t feel like I was at my best. I left guys on base. All I wanted to do after the game was get out of the park, hole up in my hotel room, watch some TV and recharge my batteries.
 
OK, another question was whether hitting or catching is easier. That’s easy. It’s a lot easier to catch a ball than hit it. A ball comes hurtling at you at 90 mph and you have a stick in your hands that you have to swing at just the right moment and at just the right angle, not only to make contact, but to make contact well enough to hit it past the fielders. It’s a lot easier to squat down and catch it.
 
Another question was: What is your favorite thing about being on the Giants? Everything, really. But if you want something specific, I’ve always been so impressed by the Giants’ appreciation of the team’s history. We have amazing owners here who really honor the past. So as a player you’re always reminded that you’re walking in the footsteps of some of the greatest men who ever played the game. And you know that, as a player, you won’t be forgotten. You’ll always be part of the Giants family.
 
There are a few more questions to answer, but I have to go. My two girls are here for Father’s Day and I want to get back to them. I’ll answer the rest of the question in my next post.
 
Happy Father’s Day to all the fathers — enjoy the day.

11 Comments

First of all, HOORAY for you putting your daughters as the priority! I know people say it all the time, but truly your daughters will ALWAYS matter more to you than ALL of your best memories of baseball combined. Happy Father’s Day to you!!!

I really appreciated your encouraging comment to a lefty (a couple of my children are lefties too)! I am a mom of more than a quiver of children. My five year old has autism, but he LOVES baseball. I don’t want to rule out the possibility he could play if that is the desire of his heart!

I saw your dropped ball on the 9th inning and I remember my heart sank and I could only imagine how bummed you must have felt. Good try nonetheless, I could not have asked for more from you! I recall I was trying to answer a trivia question about how many ways are there to get a batter out and I was struggling with the MLB rules on exactly how many ways they would deem. I still don’t get how to determine…LOL!

Enjoyed your blog again today and sending you many blessings, Julianne

PS– FE FI FO FUM!!! Go Giants!!!

Happy Father’s Day to you. I hope your brother is doing well. That was a nasty collision he took. An amazing play but scary none-the-less.

Happy Father’s Day to you. I hope your brother is doing well. That was a nasty collision he took. An amazing play but scary none-the-less.

Happy Father’s Day! First, I hope Yadier is okay, those plays at the plate always make me hold my breath. I also wanted to say how much I have enjoyed your blog. I moved to the east coast for graduate school and reading your blog has been a great way to keep updated. Thanks again!

Bengie,

Thanks for taking the time to answer your fan?s questions.
I wanted to congratulate you on your 1,000 hit and wish you a very Happy Father?s day!

I hope Yadier is doing well. It was really scary to hear he was taken off the field with a neck brace. Please tell him we?ll be praying for him for a speedy recovery.

Hi Bengie,
I hope that you had a great Father’s Day with yor daughters!
Also wishing that Yadier is recovering well.

Bengie, what do you say to the pitchers (or yourself) to get refocused after an umpire blows a call? Like tonight, the play at the plate with Rodriguez?

Bengie- thanks so much for taking the time to answer fan questions… on Father’s day no less. I simply can’t get enough of you. I hope your Father’s day was as great as you are and I hope Yadi is doing well.
Go Giants!

Kim

Hi Bengie–I was so happy to stumble across your blog! Thanks for taking the time to do this. It’s so great to get a player’s perspective rather than a reporter’s. Although I am a die-hard Cardinals fan, there is nothing in baseball that I love more than watching a good catcher at work. For that very reason, I do catch an occasional Giants game. I look forward to reading more from you. Best of luck to you and your brothers!–Kathy

Hi Bengie – thanks for answering all of our questions and sharing your stories. You are as much a joy to read as to watch play.

I was at the game on Saturday against the A’s and really enjoyed the history the team shared with bringing back some of the infielders who have worn the orange and black over the past 50 years. They said the next reunion will be for pitchers and catchers. I was wondering, which catchers would you most like to meet at the reunion?

I’m glad to see that Yadier is out of the hospital. I hope he continues to feel better!

Bengie: as a long time Giants fan, I really appreciate your effort and your will to win. You are also doing a great job with the young pitching staff – thank you!

My questions:
1. Zito had a great outing last night in Cleveland. Is it merely a question of command, or has he also been struggling with focus and negative thoughts? Also, can you keep him using both sides of the plate?

2. What are Dave Righetti’s strengths as a pitching coach? He doesn’t seem to develop pitchers like Leo Mazzone, Dave Duncan, or Rick Petersen.

3. Why is the team struggling so much at home this season?

4. How do you communicate with Keichi Yabu during games?

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