Life Is Good – Brandon Crawford

It’s been great to be in contact with a lot of you through Twitter (@bcraw35). Sorry to have disappeared from the blogosphere. But I’ve been busy relaxing. It’s taken up most of my time. It’s one of my favorite things, and I’m good at it.

​I’m exaggerating but not much.

​Today, actually, I visited Casa Colina, a rehabilitation hospital in Pomona. It’s where Jalynne’s father, John, recovered from the traumatic brain injury he suffered in Australia during the 2000 Olympics, where Jalynne’s sister Jamie was competing on the U.S. gymnastics team. A bus ran a red light and hit the taxi John and his oldest daughter Jennifer were riding in. She had minor injuries, but he suffered a fractured skull, bruised brain, two collapsed lungs, fractured left wrist, bruised vertebra and trachea injury. He was in a coma for a week. It was five weeks before he was stable enough to leave the hospital in Sydney. Then he put in18 long months of rehab at Casa Colina.

I visited Casa Colina last season during the All-Star break and, like then, I came away today in awe of the courage and perseverance of people dealing with tragedy. I met men today who had been injured in Afghanistan. One had been shot in head. I met a teenaged-looking kid in a wheelchair who can’t talk and can barely move his hands. Yet he managed to give me a thumb’s-up for the World Series. I was glad Jalynne’s father came with us. He’s a great example of the power of the human mind and spirit to heal. The brain injury prevents him from driving or working, but otherwise you’d never know what he went through.

IMG_2939[1]Casa Colina

​I love Jalynne’s parents like my own. We’re living with them in Southern California for the time being. They had an extra room where they’re helping us set up the nursery for the baby, who’s due in a little over a week. We have the crib, changing table, playpen. Our plan is to spend Christmas Eve down here then drive up Christmas day to spend time with my family in Pleasanton. We’ll probably stay five or six days there. In mid-January, I’ll go to Arizona for conditioning camp.  Then there’s FanFest in early February. Then spring training. Then Opening Day!

​I’m learning that when you keep playing through the last game of the World Series, the off-season can go by pretty quick. So that’s why I’m relaxing really hard, trying to cram as much in as possible between movies and miniature golf. And now I’m working out, too. There’s no getting around the fact I’m in a physical business. I took two weeks off after the parade then got back into the gym.

​The highlight of the off-season so far was the getaway to Ojai Sunday through Tuesday of this week. Jalynne and I stayed in a resort there to celebrate our first wedding anniversary. Major relaxing.

​I was thinking about what an amazing 12 months it’s been. I married my best friend. Became the starting shortstop on the team I rooted for as a child. Won the World Series. Rode in a ticker-tape parade through my home city (with my parents and three sisters in the trolley in front of Jalynne and me). And I’m about to become a father.

​Not sure I want 2012 to end.

​Except that 2013 looks like it will be a pretty good one, too. We’ll have the baby. Almost all of my Giants’ teammates will be back. And I get to play in the best ballpark in the world with the best fans. Life is good.

​-Brandon C.

52 Comments

thanks for writing this!!

So happy you blogged again! I hoped you would! Can’t wait for baseball season :)

So good to “see” you again, BC! Yes, life is good!! See you in 2013!!

Congrats Crawford! So proud! Your wifes father is a trooper !

miss my giants so bad…spring training yet? :)

am so glad to hear from you!

will be waiting for more updates!

Thanks, Brandon! Relax as hard as you can; I have a feeling 2013 is going to be another good year (definitely not dull!). Thanks again to all of you guys (and gals) for being so generous with your blog posts and tweets—Giants fans have the best team in the world!

Yes, Brandon, thanks for the update. You hung in there yourself last season and pulled all the way through to be an important part of a world championship team. Just like you the team grew and grew through the season until like a giant it stood over that last club in the post season. Joy, joy, delirious joy! Thanks so much. I can’t wait to see you guys outdo yourselves next season. Go Giants!!

Brandon! Just reading about all the good things that are happening in your life makes me so happy. It is so nice to see good things happen to a good person. I wish you and Jalynne all the best and that the little girl that you are about to bring into the world brings you so much happiness. If Jalynne gives birth a day early then she will be born on Dec. 8 which is my birthday, too! You always seem to appreciate everything that is happening to you and you came through the early problems you have in the beginning part of the season so well. I’m glad that you took some time of the sparse time you have to relax to post because it gives me a chance to say thank you for such a wonderful season in 2012. You guys were such a special team the way in which you played for each other and had each others backs! There will always be a special soft spot in my baseballing heart for you guys. Have a wonderful and safe Christmas and see you at FanFest!!

What a fantastic post, Brandon! Thanks for updating those of not into Twitter. Congratulations on all the rewards your hard work has brought you, it has been a wonderful treat watching you play ball this last year. Here’s to a great many more fantastic seasons to come. Merry Christmas to you and yours. :-)

You get back to that relaxing, Brandon!!!! Back away from the computer, and give that wifey a big smooch! Am so excited for you guys! Now get back to relaxing!!!! ; )

It was so good of you, Jalynne, and your father-in-law to visit with the patients at Casa Colina. I know that for people whose world has been narrowed to rehab and assisted care facilities, any break in their routine is welcome and cherished. You made a real difference in someone’s day. You’re good people, all of you.

I know you’re excited about the arrival of your daughter in the next few days but try to enjoy every minute of the wait and take it all in – the last few days of it being just the two of you and all the anticipation of knowing she’s just THISCLOSE to being in your arms. I hope the special day is a healthy and safe one for both Jalynne and the baby (and for you, too! Don’t pass out and hit your head or anything. Let’s be honest – we care, but clearly there would have to be obligatory mocking at that point.)

Have a wonderful, special holiday season with your families. And please let us know when the tiny Crawdette arrives!

Wishing you and your family the best Christmas ever.

Good luck in a week or so when your baby comes! Being a parent is amazing. My daughter just headed off to college this Fall and I am so proud of her and still love watching her grow into a young woman and watch the direction her life will take, all the while being her “wing man” now that she’s older.

That’s really nice of you to visit Casa Colina and Jalynne’s dad sounds like a strong person to come through such a serious injury. Traumatic Brain Injuries are so serious. I’m glad the NFL is taking them more serious now (R.I.P. Junior Seau). I’ve been home for 20 months now from a whiplash injury that doesn’t seem to be healing. The doctors can’t do anything for me (they cauterized the nerves in my neck as a last resort, but it didn’t take). I come from a very athletic family and watching you guys play baseball is such a great break during the day. I look forward to next season and watching you guys continue to grow as a team, and continue to watch you flourish as a Golden Glove caliber Short Stop, Brandon. I grew up in San Diego, so would call my dad when the Giants were televised down there (usually against his Padres), and would say, “Did you see that play? THAT’S the Short Stop I was telling you about.” :0) Dad used to play – was in Spring Training with the, then, Milwaukee Braves, opted to go to college, then threw his arm out in college. I’ve learned a lot about the game from him.

I’m glad you have extended family to help Jalynne with the baby when you head back to camp. It will be a huge help! Good luck and keep us posted!!

Deborah
tonka325@yahoo.com

Thanks for posting, it was great to hear from you. Prayers and good thought for you and your family and that new little one. Being a parent is the most important role you will play in your life. If you work it just half as hard as you do shortstop you will be a fantastic Dad.

Dammit Crawford, now I like you even better… Happy for all the good things. Gratitude is somewhat rare these days, and appreciating what you have will only bring more positive. Good stuff, enjoy the rest of the off-season and the new baby! Looking forward to Spring Training!

Way to count your blessings, Brandon. What a magical year it has been for you and yours!

Best of luck to you and Jalynne! December babies are the most awesome babies to have and fortunately for yours, she’ll be born far enough away from Christmas to prevent her birthday getting swallowed by everything else ;)

You’re awesome!! Giants are lucky to have stand up players like yourself and so many others. Thank you for being a role model for my baseball loving boys!! Congrats on the baby, wishing Jalynne a speedy delivery!

Thanks for sharing, Brandon. I loved watching you play. You were amazing. It’s also nice to see and meet the “real” you. Congrats on being a father. I am having my first grandchild in Feb. any looking so forward to it. Enjoy your time. Looking forward to next year. You guys are so awesome. I am proud to have you all represent our wonderful city. Happy Holidays

2013 will only be better than 2012, I’m sure :).

First of all congrats to you and all my Giants!!!!!. Thank you for an amazing season and I do believe I’m having withdrawls lol. Can’t wait for FanFest or the next season. Continue to enjoy your time off. Much love xoxo…….. GIANTS RULE THE WORLD!!!!!!!

congrats to you, champ! Can’t wait to see you on the field next year, rest up and have fun (but no Affeldt-style mishaps, please ;-)

just went i thought i couldn’t baseball …you made me miss baseball that much more. Congrats to you and Jalynne! warms my heart to know that youre awesome on the diamond and at home! GO GIANTS!

what an awesome year, and well deserved! Will love watching you play SS for the Giants for years to come! And did you go to Oak Knoll Elementary school in Menlo Park? :)

I can hardly wait to watch you play again this year. I see Golden Glove Awards in the future for your exciting, solid defense at SS.

I have never answered a blog or posting before, but I must tell this story of my grandsons. My 2 youngest grandsons were with me one evening as I was watching the world series. They are ages 9 and 7 and were asking me questions about some of the players. Well, we got to you, Brandon Crawford, and your teammate, Brandon Belt. I explained to them your positions, etc. Well, in the course of questions and answers, they brought up one of my older grandsons whose name is “Brandan”. Now he has played baseball since he was old enough to hold a bat, ball and glove and is now playing college baseball for Marshall State U. in Marshall, MN. He will be a junior this year and will be doing some training in Arizona in a couple of months. Long story short…my “Brandan” has the nickname “B-Man” and has had forever…even the announcers call him by his nickname. And now you, Brandon Crawford and your friend and teammate, Brandon Belt, have the honor and distinction of having new nicknames and being called “B-Man” by my 2 youngest grandsons. I cannot see a picture or watch a game, but what I don’t think of it. Best of luck to both of you Brandon’s in the coming season and Brandon Crawford…..looking forward to hearing when that new baby is born.

When you were with the Fresno Grizzlies in 2011, I went to a game with my wife and son in Las Vegas. You broke a bat during the game, and right after the game, you gave the bat to my son. He is so grateful, and is a huge fan of yours. He has the bat in a Plexiglas case on his wall. He would love to get you to sign it, and maybe he can bring it to Fan Fest. (I hope they will let him into the ballpark with it!) Thanks for posting, and thanks for being such a great example to young Giants fans.

The only thing better than winning the World Series will be holding that little baby for the first time. Enjoy fatherhood and cherish every moment of it!

The only thing better than winning the World Series in your lifetime will be holding that baby in your arms for the first time. Enjoy fatherhood and cherish every moment of it!

Yeah Brandon! So happy for you and thanks for winning the works series for us. Only one hurdle to go, besides Jaylynne’s labor,….GO BRUINS!

I could go on and on about how genuinely touched I am by the sweetness in this post (but I won’t.) Have a very happy and healthy December, and know that we’re all REALLY looking forward to cheering you on in 2013!

I will keep your father-in-law i,John ,n my prayers. Also will be praying you and your wife welcome into this world a healthy baby. In a family full of Giants fans, and, lots of opinions, I was your staunchest fan. Faith is a remarkable ally and I had and still do have faith in your talent as a ball player.

Love to hear that you are finally relaxing. Between baseball and a new baby, ur gonna be busy
You’re an inspiration to my two young sons, ages 7 and 10. My ten year old loves baseball and wants to become a Giant. He reminds me of u when he plays… He makes very difficult plays look easy.
Take care and best of luck in 2013!!

That is really, really cool of you to visit the folks at Casa Colina. My younger brother was in a car accident and received a TBI. He was in a coma for 4 weeks, but eventually came out of it and after he was able, was sent (from UCDMC in Sacramento) to Casa Colina. He was there for a year, and the progress he made was incredible. It’s truly a incredible facility with an amazing staff.

It has been great seeing you get the consistent playing time someone needs to find a rhythm. I’ve said from the start that you’ll be stacking up the GG’s (starting with 2013 is my prediction), and I hope you do take some time now and then to feel impressed and proud about what you’ve accomplished because it’s awesome, even if there’s always more work to do to improve.

I posted this question for Brandon Belt too, but are you guys going to be blogging again next season? It has been interesting and enlightening hearing about what things are like for you guys.

Keep enjoying the offseason relaxation, and if you haven’t seen Wreck It Ralph and Life of Pi yet, get out and see them! Both are great!

What a wonderful thing for you to do! My husband suffered a TBI fours years ago that changed my families life. It’s been a challenge for my three boys and I, but we know there is always hope. Wishing you a wonderful Christmas and a great birth for you and your wife! Love watching you play and look forward to 2013. Giants rock.

Best of everything for the rest of 2012, Brandon and Jalynne. Have a wonderful Christmas. Like all your fans, I’m hoping everything goes smoothly with the baby’s birth. It will be tough for awhile but you’re a tough guy and I know you’ll be a great dad. I’m hoping to see you at FanFest and Spring Training. I think my youngest son is planning to get me a jersey with your name on it. In a family full of Giants fans, they all laugh cause Mom loves Crawford best …..even when you were having a difficult time at the beginning of the season. I thought you had what it takes and you proved me right! 2013 is going to be awesome.

thanks for sharing, Brandon! I love your happiness here, it’s so refreshing to read and know you’re living your dreams and are aware of it and grateful. I also love the way you speak about your family, it’s so sincere and loving. I think that this enjoyment of life really carries over into your playing, and it’s why all your fans (me included!) love watching you play! Wish you and your wife all the best, and enjoy your Christmas and your new little one! :) God bless you.

Brandon, you are a gem. Here’s to a happy, healthy offseason for you and your family. Can’t wait to watch you guys play again!

Brandon, Jalynne & John,

It was wonderful to meet you at Casa Colina. It was wonderful to witness the progress of John, the new life soon to come into this world with Jalynne and the humble and grateful heart of a champion in you. I know it brought excitement for the residents at Casa and you were so classy about with our teasing. (ok, maybe that was just me. :). We will post your twitter with the picture of you and my boys on our son Carlos’ Caringbridge site. Already family and friends were so happy for Carlos to have met you…. Another champion. !!!

We wish you continued professional success and more importantly personal success in all you do with your new family.

You will always have your fans here in Southern California following your career, and wishing you continued success, even while we root for the other guys, sorry !!! :( it would be wrong to lie, we’ve lived here forever.

Gods Blessings to you and your family always,

The Barron Family

From a fellow Pleasantonian, we’re very proud of you and the Giants!! Happy fatherhood!!

Hi Brandon –

Great to hear from you! Just wanted to send congrats for the fabulous finish to the 2012 season….I am still in awe of that victory! Yes, you really are living the dream of many young boys who grew up in the Bay Area…..boys who rooted for the Giants, wanted to play for them someday, dreamed of playing in a World Series and winning. It has all come true for you! I can only imagine all the thoughts and feelings you must have! WOW!! But even with all that, life’s hard realities are present. So very sorry to hear about Jalynne’s father’s accident. I know this must be very hard on both of you. But with the baby due soon, there will be more joy and happiness just around the corner. I hope you will once again choose to live in Walnut Creek next year. That is where I grew up and still love that area. My very best to you, Jalynne and the baby on-the-way!

It really was quite the year for you! I loved watching you grow as a player, and I know you’re only going to get better. When that picture of you as a child at Candlestick Park appeared in the SF Chronicle, it just took my breath away as I thought “Wow…now he’s really living the dream.” It really was one of the best stories of this Giants team this season (Though we know there were plenty!). Very sweet that you paid a visit to Casa Colina. I’m very sorry to hear about Jalynne’s father but he sounds like quite the trooper! Many well-wishes to you and the wife for a healthy birth and on the new arrival, and enjoy the rest of this off-season! Looking forward to the 2013 season. Take care, Brandon!

Mr. Crawford,
This post was beautiful. As a longtime Giants fan, I was thrilled to see someone from my hometown, Mountain View, playing in the majors. As a Special Olympics coach, I take great joy in seeing athletes who can come above differences to see the beauty in individuals who lead different lifestyles than our own. Especially those with the celebrity social status. Your visit probably meant the world to every single person there and continued to give them motivation. I’m glad to hear you and your wife are doing well and hope you enjoy fatherhood. Thank you for all that you’ve done for the community. I haven’t had a “favorite” Giants player in many years (It used to be Tom Goodwin back in 2002), but I can confidently say that your work and ethics beyond just baseball makes you my favorite player and a person I can truly respect. Thank you again. Best of luck this next week!!!

I’m glad all of these wonderful things have happened to you and your family! I hope 2012 has been memorable for you all and that you have a safe and Merry Chrismas! Thanks for being such a great baseball and family man!

I meant Christmas! And congrats on the baby! sorry.

I’m totally going to check out casa colina. I’m a physical therapist assistant and being able to see patients progress so much after traumatic brain injury or stroke is something I strive for. I’m sure the patients and staff appreciated your visit.

Just want to say what an inspiration you are. I am 72 years young and have been a Giants fan since I was a child, my dad used to take us to see giants when we were young . Keep up the good job. God bless you and yours.

Enough with the waiting, GG and AS game this year, young fella. Giants fans have a way of getting what they want, if you deserve it next summer, lad. Good luck, have fun. You’re a joy to watch.

Thanks for taking a moment to share, but get back to relaxing and preparing for the 2013 season. :^)

Happy Holidays!

Truly what a great guy, friend, husband, father, human being. They don’t make men like this a lot anymore. Jen

Glad Jalynne’s father is getting better. Happy early birthday by the way (because I know your birthday’s tomorrow!!!) :D Take care!

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