Wednesday, April 11, 2012

"Normal" April....Weather and Baseball

They, The Weather Channel and others, were calling for mostly sunny, windy, and cool, conditions yesterday, high in the low 50s...not a pleasant day, but more so than what it ended up being.  As I headed towards Lima Temple Christian School on the north end of Lima, the early sun had changed to a cloud cover, and the incessant winds had increased into the 30 to 40mph was not going to be a pleasant day on the diamond.  Arriving at about 4:25, some 35 minutes before game time, I waited for my partner, Denny, who hails from Lima, to arrive....once the veteran umpire arrived, it was decided I would work the plate...for only the third time in my 15 games to date.  Even with my surgery, and the issues that the neck/artery wound had presented, I felt the need to get behind the plate...and frankly the idea of wearing the extra gear in the bitter cold seemed a pretty good idea.

The game, played between the host Temple Pioneers and visiting Hardin-Northern, was played in cloudy weather, with a strong wind blowing straight in from Center Field, and some snow flurries, which arrived by the 3rd inning...lasted about 2 hours, as HN came away with a 7-2 win.  And while I took no shots off my full face mask, I did manage to take a strike off the catcher's glove straight on my left wrist....and while it was not a fracture, it did swell to the size of a baked potato by game's end.  Yes indeed, welcome back...wind, cold, snow, and a shot off some part of my that's the spring baseball I am used to!

It does indeed seem that Mother Nature, not to let us feel too good about the warm winter, and very warm in the mood for some payback weather.  By the time I left the ballpark, just after 7pm...the temperature on the neon sign at the combination school/church read 37 degrees...I suspect the chill factor was close to 20.  My wrist throbbed and I was ready to put some ice on it, and down a couple of cold ones, after the 35 mile drive home.

Tonight I will once again don my new full helmet mask, with my personal makeshift neck guard, which goes hand-in-hand with the regular factory neck/throat guard....still aware that I am less than four weeks out of major surgery....last night, although nothing came close to my neck area, still reminded me that the days that I went behind the plate free of most concerns, are long gone.  The question is, can I still do the job good enough, despite the concerns?  I did note last night, despite having a game that was free from complaints, that I was still concerned that the neck/throat was fully protected...with the plate tonight and again tomorrow at Van Wert, hopefully those concerns will be somewhat abated....frankly though I have to believe, this season will be different than years past...especially due to personal concerns.

Going to the Dogs______

In addition to a full week of baseball....I am "dog sitting" with Hal and Lisa's mixed breed Schnauzer pups....Avery and Kameron....we will have them until Sunday, which adds much action to the house.  Old Reagan, sadly is not doing well, and for the most part avoid and ignores the noisy duo, as does the cat. Reagan is nearing the end....the Airedale is now an amazing 13 years 9 1/2 months old....but sadly, won't likely make it to 14....but as it is, she has outlived, and much longer than any of the many Airedales we have raised.....

So that's the story of my week, weather and baseball, getting back to normal, and pup sitting....back later>>>>

Photos-Although the snow at Lima yesterday was nowhere this heavy, the lite snow along with the strong winds make for uncomfortable conditions...The wrist as it looked this morning, the swelling is down, but I can still "feel it" addition to the full face hockey mask, with factory throat guard....I have added my own for more protection, but even with this, there are no guarantees, just like in most things in this life.  And Avery(bottom) and Kam, Hal and Lisa's dogs are here for the week, adding some additional spice to my somewhat retired life.

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