What’s going on, everyone? Hope everyone enjoyed that series win versus the Cubs. It was a great series, like they always seem to be, and despite their record, I still feel like they have a very good ballclub over there. It’s good for us to win series; we need to continue to do that and get back to .500, then we can worry about other things. Even though we are playing on opposite sides of town, it was good for me to see Carlos Zambrano pitch well. No matter what, you always want your friends to do well in this game. As for us, our bullpen was outstanding once again, and we got just enough hitting to take the series. I enjoyed my day off yesterday morning with a little golf with my kids, and I’m looking forward to the Nationals coming to town. They are hot right now, so it should be a good series.
Before I answer some questions like I promised to do in my last post, I want to remind everyone that space is running out for my kids summer baseball camp taking place during the All-Star Break. You can sign up now at any of the four Chicagoland locations, and I can promise that all the kids will have a great time. You can sign up here, too.
Now, on to your questions …
Q: Do you still think the Twins will be a contender in the AL Central this season? — Mike K. (Waseca, Minn.)
A: Yes, I do. Those guys know how to play baseball, so no matter how many games they are behind us, they are just as dangerous as anybody else. And as you can tell by the way they are playing, they are going to be right there at the end of it.
Q Ozzie, who was better at the hot corner — Joe Crede or Robin Ventura? — Brandon B. (Chicago)
A: I say Robin because he won many more Gold Gloves and lasted longer than Joe did. But don’t get me wrong, when Joe was healthy, he was very good over there.
Q: How important is it that your players do something to give back to the community? — Pat C. (Naperville, Ill.)
A: I think that’s the main goal other than winning games. That’s what the Chicago White Sox and Mr. Jerry Reinsdorf are all about. They put an emphasis on helping the community, and they do a great job of it.
Q: If the world were ending tomorrow, what would you do tonight? — Tyler G. (Greenville, N.C.)
A: I would have dinner with my kids and spend the night with my wife. A few drinks might be involved somewhere in there. (hehe)
Q: Do you ever worry about losing your job? — Matt B. (Oak Lawn, Ill.)
A: Never, because I have no control over that. I have been on the hot seat since 2004.
You keep sending the questions, and I will keep answering them!!!
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What’s up, everyone! I’m back in Chicago and, wow, it’s cold here. This weekend, I am in town for the Easter Seals Holiday Gala. If you don’t know too much about Easter Seals, please look them up. They are a great organization, and I love working with them. The things they do for kids with disabilities are truly great.
I have seen some great questions coming in over the past week on here, Facebook and Twitter, and I’m trying to get around to answering as many as I can. One specific question that did catch my eye — someone wanted to know if I could pick all players, what my “All-Ozzie” team would be. Here you go …
* Ivan Rodriguez, C
* Rafael Palmeiro, 1B
* Roberto Alomar, 2B
* Mike Schmidt, 3B
* Ozzie Smith, SS
* Barry Bonds, LF
* Ken Griffey Jr., CF
* Roberto Clemente, RF
* Edgar Martinez, DH
* John Smoltz, SP
* Scott Radinsky, LHR
* Dennis Eckersley, RHR
* Mariano Rivera, CL
On to the questions …
Q: What is the hardest thing to adjust to as a Latin player coming to play affiliated baseball in the States?
A: The language is the hardest thing to adjust to, no question. It’s also very hard to adjust to the life and culture here in America. Also, the rules can be difficult because some things that are legal in other countries aren’t legal here.
Q: Who provides the best pre- and post-game food outside of Chicago?
A: Hands down, the best food is when we’re at Yankee Stadium. I also like Tampa and Cleveland, too.
Q: Do you see MLB expanding to Mexico or Puerto Rico in the next 5-10 years?
A: I don’t see that happening. There are too many things to worry about — security, travel, fan support. I mean, I hope it happens, but too many things would need to go right for that to be possible.
Q: Who is the funniest player you have ever coached or met?
A: The funniest players, for me, were Jose Contreras, Kevin Millar and Robin Ventura. Those guys are funny without a doubt.
Q: What’s your favorite hobby outside of baseball? Do you play a musical instrument?
A: Outside of baseball, I like golf, boating and bullfighting. I wish I could play percussions for Latin Music!
Please keep all the great questions coming. I enjoy reading and responding to them!
Until next time …