Double Plays and Double-Twisting Back Flips – Brandon Crawford

When I got home from AT&T after we beat the Mets last Tuesday, Jalynne and her sister Jamie were watching the U.S. Olympic women’s gymnastics team on TV. Watching Olympic gymnastics with them is a little like watching the Super Bowl with Eli and Peyton Manning. Jalynne competed in gymnastics at UCLA and Jamie was on the U.S. Olympic team that won the bronze in Sydney eight years ago.

​I’d be admiring some incredible performance and thinking the girl nailed it, and they’d say, “Oh no, she messed up right there.’’ It’s amazing to me that Jalynne and Jamie actually could do the things that these gymnasts were doing. If I trained all my life, I couldn’t do what they did every day in the gym.

But they’re nice enough to tell me they could never do what I do on the baseball field. I’d like to believe them.

​I’ve been watching as much of the Olympics as I can at home, in the clubhouse and on the plane. The long-distance runners, the sprinters, the swimmers – I love seeing the very best in the world pushing themselves beyond what you think is possible. I was sitting on the plane from Colorado to St. Louis the other day, and all the guys around me were watching the Olympics, too – Cain, Javy, Buster, Pill, Zito.  Gymnastics happened to be on and one of the girls on vault landed on her face, and you heard everybody all at once go “Oooohhhhhh!’’ There are not a lot of face-plants in baseball.

​On another topic, it was tough to see Manny Burriss pack up and leave. When we got Marco Scutaro, Manny figured he’d be the odd man out. It’s hard saying goodbye to any teammate, but this is the first time I’ve had to say goodbye to a teammate who was one of my closest friends on the team. It reminds you how special it is to be in the major leagues and how hard you have to keep working to stay as long as you can. Fortunately Manny’s still with the organization and I’ll see him again in spring training or if he’s called back up.

​Having said that, it’s good to have Scutaro and Hunter Pence join the club. They’re both real pros who go about their business in a professional way. Our clubhouse has a pretty unique group of guys, so the tone in here is not going to change. Marco and Hunter add experience and depth, which will help down the stretch and into the playoffs.

​Yesterday, one of our trainers was trying out Buster Bash, a mobile-app baseball game that has just come out. It’s animated along the lines of Angry Birds. A pitcher throws the ball and you hit it by flicking your finger. As you go up each level, you go through Posey’s career path from Wiffle Ball to high school, college and the pros. I tried it and did pretty well. Maybe I’ll challenge Buster to a game.

​Heading out to the ballpark now. Let’s hope we can get some more runs for Zito tonight than we did for Cain last night.

​I’ll see you when I get back to the Bay Area this weekend. Thanks for reading.​

-Brandon C.

24 Comments

Barry is Pitching tonight!

Good luck I’ll be watching!

Dude Buster Bash is SO addicting.

YES. Except I suck and can’t get past the second level…

Keep up the good plays, BC!

I enjoy watching you play. You may not do gymnastics, but you seem to give your all on the field!

‘Love your posts – I think you have a future with your own sports column when, hopefully a very long time from now, your baseball career has wrapped up. Great writing. I’m biased, though, because I went to UCSB so you and Jalynne are alma mater adjacent(?). lol! That’s awesome about Jalynne and her sister. I sit here and listen to Kuiper and Krukow during the Giants’ games and I learn so many things during every game because they were pros. Kruk’s commentary during pitches and at-bats – he’s a natural narrator. Like watching the elite skill of the Olympians, it’s always a pleasure watching you guys play and listening to those two commentators. Maybe I’m biased (once again), but the guys on the Giants seem like they have all the nuances of the game down more than most teams. Belt “getting” hit in the back with the ball running from 1st to 2nd base tonight. Theriot’s faking the tag on 2nd when the runner doesn’t see the ball roll out to center. Everything Buster does seems amazing. And your double plays never get old – like they should be set to classical music. lol! Always very smooth, even if you’re leaping in the air. Just so fun to watch such talented athletes and a team that looks like they really enjoy each other and really enjoy the game.

That’s funny that you guys could all relate to the face-plant when the gymnast did her vault. Some things just translate between sports. ‘Must be great to be in a household of fellow athletes. You can all relate to the competition of sports.

Good luck tomorrow in Game #3 in St. Louis!
DJ

What is your favorite event to watch during the Olympics?

Totally didn’t expect to read about the Dantzcher sisters. Jamie inspired me in 2000 during the Sydney Olympics to take up the sport again after having a really rough time with some injuries. I watched all three of the sisters compete for Miss Val and will always remember the amazing floor routines they did when traveling up to compete at Berkeley. I coach and judge the sport now as one of my jobs. Amazing how small the gymnastics community is. Go Giants.

I started playing Buster Bash… But can’t get thru level 2. I hope you’re doing better than me. Haha.
Btw that’s pretty awesome to have relation to an olympic medalist (aside from your former teammate Nate).

Great post, fellow Bruin! I love reading what you and Belt have to say about all of your experiences. I was particularly interested in how all of the recent player trades affected you as an individual player, as well as the club – thanks for shedding light on that. I agree with DJ that you could definitely have a future as a sports writer…you know, WAY in the future! Keep up the good work on the field and on the blog!

Awesome play at the end of the 4th inning tonight!! I agree with Lil…your posts are definitely well written and always interesting…You have a career as a sports writer..If you guys go all the way this year, you have the makings of an excellent chronology of the 2012 season…You might want to consider a brief narrative of the days events..You guys have the potential to go far in October…

Thank for the update on your life. It’s been so hard getting both Giant games and the Olympics in each day. GO GIANTS, GO USA!!!!

I have been a Giants fan for almost 50 years and am glad to see the team going through some good seasons again – good young pitching and some good bats in the line up – but what has happened to the fielding – can a team win a pennant with as many errors as the team is committing? The outfield seems set now but the infield is still a rotation every night – is that the problem?

Always enjoy your blog. We just got home from driving to St. Louis and saw your first three games with the Cards. Last night’s game (the 15-0) was especially fun. Your save late in the game was spectacular. Trust me, the girls have nothing on you. Thanks for giving us midwest fans a great show.

The blog is great, thanks for taking the time to post (especially since it may be eating into valuable Buster Bash time). This could easily be a game recap-type thing but you and Brandon B. tell the story off the field, too. Yes, even BB’s shaving woes and broken zippers. Fun to read that a lot of you guys are following the Olympics even though you’re in the middle of a close race to the post-season.
Here are some random questions for the professor: Your favorite away park to play in, what did Bochy say to you at the plate after that foul ball off your knee, will the batting gloves ever return to the back pockets (I’m pro-flair), do double plays EVER get old and how do you do against your own team’s pitchers? Have you ever had to hit against them (pre-Giants)?
Thanks again for the updates BCraw!

Really liked your comments on Manny B. But you are right we will see him again.
Keep the great work up at short and your bat is following suit. GO GIANTS!! and
GO USA!!!!

I don’t now Brandon. Your acrobatic jumps during defensive double plays amaze our family every time. I think you would do better than you think competing in gymnastics. Love the blog. This is such a special team and it is a pleasure to watch you all play. Go Giants!

I don’t know Brandon. Your defensive acrobatic moves during double plays amaze our family every time. I think you could hold your own in gymnastics. Love this team. Keep playing great baseball. Go Giants!

Buster Bash kills me, I’m wondering if a real baseball player would be able to get past level 2! (: Kruik and Kuip just mentioned your 9 game hitting streak. You’re wonderful. (: Haha, just saying! Oh, and I was wondering, do you guys ever hang out with players of opposing teams during the season? Good luck in San Diego!

Love the posts Craw, and if you don’t mind, can you explain the thing you and Theriot are doing with the antlers? It looks awesome, by the way. See ya at the ballpark, hope to see some of that middle infield D!

Brandon good job at short stop. Your’re my favorite giants player. I was so excited when i got your baseball card. Every time i go to a giants game you dont play.I made a sign for you but you didnt play.I was so bummed. My mom works with your mom and I hope one day I can meet you. I have your picture that you signed and a ball.

late to this post too. you should really give more props to your sis in law, who was the first gymnast to take on the karolyi regime and to speak out against how the us team was treated during the olympics…a system that is no longer in place, although the team now does quarterly training with karolyi’s wife

not only did she win a bronze, but she was a stud in collegiate gymnastics…helping ucla to multiple titles.

and you may not be able to do what they can…but you are gonna have the first daughter who can do the parallel bars and play ss…..fact

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