Javier Baez has been in the news this week surrounding his hot bat. The bat that smacked four home runs in two games against the Pittsburgh Pirates, and the same bat that he flipped after a pop fly.
The bat flip drew criticism from Pirates manager Clint Hurdle.
“You watch their kid flip that bat last night?” Hurdle said, according to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. “Where’s the respect for the game? The guy hits four homers in two days, so that means you can take your bat and throw it 15, 20 feet in the air when you pop up like you should have hit your fifth home run? I would bet that men over there talked to him, because I do believe they have a group over there that speaks truth to power.”
Baez responded to those comments according to ESPN Chicago’s Jesse Rogers.
“I bust my ass every day to play hard,” Baez said after the Cubs’ 6-1 loss to the Pirates. “I don’t think anyone plays this game harder than me. I respect [the game]. I respect whatever, but you don’t go out there and talk trash about someone. I have a lot of things I could say right now, but I don’t control what’s out there, what people talk about me.”
That’s what I love about Javier Baez. He’s an exciting player to watch and he shows emotion. It’s not disrespecting the game. Those home runs and emotional outbursts only fuel my Baez card collecting fire. And Cameron from Haslet, Texas came through with some Baez cards this week.
Another new Ryne Sandberg came in this box as well. A 2015 Leaf Heroes of Baseball.
Jeff Pico was a pitcher for the Cubs during the Sandberg years. Pico pitched parts of three seasons for the Chicago Cubs in 1988, 1989, and 1990. In my previous life as a sports broadcaster I hosted a radio segment on former Cubs players. I interviewed the likes of Andrew Dawson, Andy Pafko, Lennie Merullo, Cal McLish, Richie Hebner, Carmen Fanzone, Darold Knowles, Eric Patterson, Josh Donaldson, and Jeff Pico. (side note: I went through my storage totes in search of these interviews on CD’s, but came up empty. Hopefully I can track them down on my computer or a thumb drive)
One story Pico told that isn’t quite mainstream was the week he had during his Major League debut with the Cubs in 1988. The day of his last triple-A start with the Iowa Cubs (before his Chicago Cubs debut) he was driving by a building in Des Moines, Iowa that was being demolished. It fell on his car. A building fell on his car. He was not injured, and went on to pitch a shutout that night. Days later he made his MLB debut on May 31, 1988 against the Cincinnati Reds. He only pitched a complete game shutout striking out six Reds and not allowing a walk.
Here’s another story you probably haven’t heard. This one about Trevor Cahill. Did you know he was an MVP while with the Chicago Cubs? Not as a player, though. Cahill served as one of the celebrity bartenders at Woody’s Winter Warmup in 2016. He had a good time.
And he excitedly introduced fellow bartender Kyle Schwarber.
By the end of the night those in attendance began chanting, “MVP, MVP, MVP,” for Cahill’s outgoing style. He even signed a baseball inscribing his award winning night.
Kris Bryant was also represented in Cameron’s package. Two are new to my collection including the 2016 Topps Marketside. These were very popular two years ago when they came with Marketside pizzas from Wal-Mart. The 2017 Topps Gold is my first Bryant gold card and is numbered 776/2017.
Thanks for the trade, Cameron. I sent a box of Texas Rangers to Cameron in this deal.