D$’s insider guide to surviving the off-season in cold weather.
Checking in here for a special, ICEY edition of The Cup Check,
Today I want to bring all of you warm weather offseasoner’s into the life of what it is like to be in some colder temperatures for the offseason. Being from the city of Boston I have some experience in the life of a northern ballplayer. You always hear that the game is the same as when you played it as a little kid and that it should never change. This is a little different for myself and the few outstanding men like me. We grew up playing on fields that were cleared of snow the morning of the game with shovels and pure man power! Anyways, enough with my stroll down memory lane, here is my official guide to being stuck in colder weather.
Where to train, pump iron, get huge, become like the GOLDEN WARRIOR! I spend my offseason training at a high school I went to. Although it is a small school it is the best place for me to go because it keeps my work outs new and exciting. I get to use the entire weight room by myself, blast music that may scare some people and grunt and scream as I try to squat a PR. I refuse to train with a trainer or strength coach because as I always tell people if I can’t push myself I shouldn’t be playing anymore. It may be the way I was taught to play this game or what got me to the level I am at, whichever it is, it works for me.
In my opinion there is nothing like reenacting scenes from Rocky when he is running through the snow, rain, and anything else Mother Nature has to throw at us! Yes I know that it is a little childish and absurd to be thinking I am rocky getting ready to fight Drago screaming “BIG LEAGUES” at the intersection of a busy Boston street but it is what keeps me going on a day where Mother Nature tries to kick my ass! People always say it’s the little things in life in regards to what keeps you happy, this is the motivational version! Laugh if you want but running in minimus shoes on icy, snow covered roads is no laughing matter!
There is a certain level of adaptability that you need up here to train and make the most of everyday you have to get ready for the season. From finding a catcher, throwing partner, or gym hour to get your long toss in, nothing comes easy when trying to prepare to be at the top of your game in a basketball gym. Most of the guys I know playing in the minors from my part of the country leave for spring training early, either driving down I-95 to Florida or catching a bird to Arizona. It is our vacation getting down to the complex early being outside, fielding PFP’s, hitting BP cock shots onto the complex, and throwing bullpens on dirt mounds.
The key to any situation is making the most of what you have, doing what others wont to reach your goal, risking sickness to make sure that your legs are ready for the upcoming year, it is all part of being a WINTER WARRIOR in this game of baseball. The obstacles we face during the year are nothing compared to the ones we face in the offseason, plus they make us a hell of a whole lot tougher than most of the guys who don’t own a scarf and winter coat!
Til’ the next Cup Check!