The Continuous Learning Curve – Brandon Crawford
One thing you keep learning in this game is how important it is to wipe your memory clean of failures and move on. I guess it’s not exactly making a failure disappear – because, guess what, it happened. You can’t change that. So maybe it’s more that you put a fence around it to keep it from creeping into the next game.
On our recent series in Colorado, I had a really bad game. One of my worst in the last few months. I hit a line drive up the middle that the pitcher snagged. Then I had a pretty good ground ball down the third-base line that the third-baseman dove for and gloved then stepped on the bag for a force-out. (Luckily Bumgarner picked me up with his three-run homer.) Then I struck out twice. And to cap off the awful day, I threw the ball over Belt’s head and five rows up in the seats.
Infield coach Ron Wotus came up to me after the game.
“You’re going to have a game like that,’’ he said. “You’ve been playing great for three months. You’re bound to have a game like that. Don’t worry about it.’’
After I got dressed and was about to leave the clubhouse, Bochy stopped me.
“You’re playing tomorrow,’’ he said, which surprised me because I knew a lefty was pitching. Usually Arias plays against lefties.
It’s one of the things that makes Bochy such a good manager. He wanted me to get right back out on the field. He wanted to make sure I knew he had confidence in me.
Sure enough, the next day I went two-for-four with two doubles and two RBIs and no errors.
Playing baseball, because it’s an almost daily thing, gives you a lot of practice in not letting your mistakes drag you down. Probably a pretty good approach to a lot of things in life.
Things are heating up around here, and not just because we’re trying to clinch the division. If you walked into our clubhouse on a Sunday, you’d see a bunch of NFL fanatics yelling at the television. About half the team is part of a fantasy football league. It’s a pretty steep entry fee, so Belt and I didn’t sign up. We’re both in another fantasy league together that’s made up mostly of our friends and a few minor-leaguers. (And I’m in yet another league with Jalynne’s family.)
The Giants guys wanted 12 teams and only 10 signed up – Theriot, Romo, Wilson, Pence, Lincecum, Huff, trainer Dave Groeschner, Dr. Akizuki (the team orthopedist), Kuiper and Fleming co-own a team, and Nady and Pill co-own a team.
So Cain sponsored Belt, and Javy Lopez sponsored me. They’re the owners; we’re the general managers. We had our draft in Chicago during the recent road trip. After a day game, we rented a conference room in the hotel and set up a big board to record the picks. Romo is the commissioner, and he inputted everything into his laptop. Theriot brought jerseys of the predicted No.1 picks and whoever drafted that player put on the jersey like the real NFL draft.
Last Sunday, I beat Theriot in our head-to-head. So I’m feeling pretty good.
Now to your questions.
Jojibear93 wants to know why I wear No. 35. Murph gave it to me. My favorite number has always been three, but that was Bill Terry’s number and it’s retired. I like 35. It was Rich Aurilia’s number, so I think it’s a good fit. If I had to choose, I’d probably pick 26. It’s Jalynne’s favorite number because her birthday is on the 26th. Just by luck I had that number a few years ago in the fall league.
Rebecca asked if I read the newspapers and keep up on what’s being said about me. I’m on Twitter and follow some of the local writers, so I see stories that way. On Twitter I also follow players I’ve played with and a few celebrities like Taylor Swift and Li’l Wayne. Li’l Wayne is one of my favorites, and I met him on our road trip to Miami this season. Theriot knows someone who knows him and got him to visit the clubhouse.
That’s all for now. Thanks for reading and sending in your questions.
See you at the park.