We're on day 26 of our lockdown in my home. The COVID-19 pandemic is raging on around the world, and all of our favorite sports are still cancelled.
Don't worry, I'm not full of doom and gloom. It's just crazy for me to think that I've stayed home for almost a month straight with only 3 trips out for supplies. I hope you're staying home as well. I'm sure none of us ever though that sitting on the couch can help save the world, but here we are.
During this time, we've all turned to our favorite outlets, whether it's podcasts, blogs, books, music, or Zoom chats with friends. We're all seeking to stay connected.
One of the podcasts I often listen to is Around The NFL, I highly recommend it. They had a discussion the other day about which NFL person they would most like to spend the pandemic with. I'm not going to give you their answers, but I urge you if you're an NFL fan, check out that podcast.
Since I'm a baseball guy, and most of you reading this are baseball fans as well, I thought I'd take the same concept and apply it here. The only rule is, a person must be connected to baseball in some way. So, you can choose a player, coach, manager, GM, radio guy, or Joe Buck if you are so inclined. It's subjective.
Today, I'm going to run through a list of my top 5 choices of baseball people, in no particular order, to spend a pandemic cooped up together with. It could be a few months, we really don't know. That's the fun of this exercise. You want to choose someone who you can tolerate for a while. That probably rules out Aubrey Huff.
If you want, leave your choice in the comments below. If the comments are turned on. I think they are. I don't know, man. I just started writing again. One thing at a time.
I admit it. I went with a homer pick to start things off. I'm a Giants fan and Brandon Crawford is the starting shortstop for the team I love. I wanted to be fair in this exercise so I tried to limit myself to 1 Giants player. Craw is the pick.
Not only is Craw a Giants player, he grew up a fan of the team. I mean, just recently he ran a tournament on Twitter where fans voted their favorite Giants player from 1990-2009. You don't do that if you're just a player on a team who's learned a little history. No, that's a Giants fan who put that together. Someone who loves the orange and black as much as me.
There's no over-looking the fact that Brandon has luxurious flowing hair and maintains a well trimmed beard. Just one more benefit of being shut in with him for months. Can you imagine the tips and tricks that man knows about hair? Once the pandemic is over, you'd have the best head of hair in your entire life. If you're a beard guy, it's just another thing to work on together during all those hours.
Crawford has been the team DJ pretty much since he got there. His music collection is probably deep and vast. It's an opportunity to listen to stuff you've never heard before.
A 2016 Roberto Clemente Award nominee for his tireless work with charity, Sean Doolittle just seems like a fascinating guy. He's currently a pitcher with the Washington Nationals and won a World Series last year, but those are not the things that define him.
Sean has worked with many great causes including helping find homes for veterans, LGBT rights, and hosted a Thanksgiving dinner for Syrian refugees. He has been quoted as saying "When I was a kid, I remember my parents would say, 'Baseball is what you do, but that's not who you are' — like that might be my job, but that's not the end-all, be-all. I feel like I might even be able to use it to help other people or open some doors or explore more opportunities."
When on the road during baseball season, Doolittle visits local bookstores and then shares them on Twitter. He's an avid reader and wants to support the small businesses in local communities. It just feels like there's so much to talk about with Sean and the time would fly by. Added bonus for me and all the Phish fans out there, he loves the band. He's got a Wilson glove for 2020, and I'm not just talking about the brand.
See what I mean? He's a fascinating guy.
A Dodger made the list, but is Mookie Betts really a Dodger if he hasn't played a game for them? Well, yes he is. But I'm not going to hold that against him. From everything I've read about Betts and especially those times he's been miced up during games, he seems like a genuinely fun guy.
Mookie got his name because his parents wanted his initials to be MLB and they were fans of basketball player Mookie Blaylock. From a young age, Mookie's baseball coach was his mom. She also got him in to bowling.
Betts is such an accomplished bowler that he has competed in professional bowling events. He has 3 perfect games, with one of them coming at the 2014 World Series of Bowling, a PBA event. I don't know if he has a bowling lane in his house, but I would hope. That would make the days go by while hiding from this stupid virus. I think he'd be a fun hang.
Ok, I know I said I was only going to pick one Giant. I mean, technically I did. Madison Bumgarner is now an Arizona Diamondback. He's no longer the sheriff at 24 Willie Mays Plaza and so many of us are going to miss him in the orange and black. So I didn't cheat on the whole picking just one Giants player.
Bumgarner is a throwback kind of man. He owns a ranch, raises animals, chops down trees, and even competes in professional rodeo events. No wonder the guy signed with Arizona, he gets to do all that down there during the season as well as maintain his North Carolina farm in the offseason.
Madison would rather be on a horse more than a pitching mound. I truly believe that. By spending a months long stretch on his ranch during a pandemic, you just know you'd be put to work. And that's just fine with me. Our family vacation every summer was to a working dude ranch. My father was much like Bum, but instead of a pitcher as his day job, my dad was a dentist. But he was also a cowboy, and so is Bumganrer.
I don't think there would be much baseball talk during all those days working with the animals our out in the field and that would be fine with me. It's also a great workout and my wife would probably love it if I came home with a cowboy body after a few months away.
I do not care that Vin Scully is not currently working in baseball. This is my list and I want to hang out with Vin. Could you imagine the stories he could tell? It's mind blowing to think about how many baseball games he witnessed throughout the years.
Scully has been watching baseball games since 1936 when he started as young fan of the New York Giants. In 1950, he started calling games for the Brooklyn Dodgers and stayed with the organization through his retirement in 2016.
Vin could tell you about Bobby Thomson's shot heard round the world. Because he was there. He could go in depth about any one of Sandy Koufax's no-hitters, because he was there. Want to know about the time Rick Monday saved an American flag from being set on fire in the outfield at Dodger Stadium? Vin could tell you, because he was there.
Add in the NFL, PGA, and being the lead voice of MLB for both CBS and NBC, you can pretty much bet Vin has seen just about everything. You would never run out of stories during a pandemic lockdown. The man would be able to talk for hours, about anything. Make sure you take breaks for naps, Vin is 92 years old. And, who doesn't love naps?
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