Darren's Diary: Waving goodbye to Surprise
April, 2, 2010
By Darren O'Day | ESPNDallas.com
Editor's Note: Darren O'Day writes a weekly blog entry for ESPNDallas.com. This week he looks at the end of spring training and preparing for Opening Day. O'Day said he got a little overexcited about being back in the mound (following a bone bruise) and ended up throwing too many pitches. But he was pleased with how he felt and said "it was a step in the right direction."
I'm writing this as Major League Two plays in the background, and Brandon McCarthy and I both agree that Charlie Sheen has some pretty solid mechanics. For some reason, pokerface doesn't elicit the same fan reactions as "Wild Thing". Every time I see Rick Vaughn come out to it, I get goosebumps. The atmosphere is so electric in those movies, it makes me think of all the times I've been in that situation.
As we pack up to head to Dallas, there are a few things I'm going to miss about spring training and some I will not. Phoenix golf is exceptional, especially when you have afternoons to take advantage of it. Early in camp, I got to play quite a bit, and my favorite course out here is still The Raven at Verrado. It's a really challenging desert/mountain course that is worth every penny. We had a nice group of Scott Feldman, Derek Holland, Tommy Hunter, McCarthy, myself, and former Ranger Josh Rupe early in spring and had a great time. Well, Holland and I had fun blasting drives 200 yards into the desert, while McCarthy was getting a little frustrated with our play. Apparently, it was Sunday at Augusta, and he had a one-shot lead. I guess you have to take the game seriously when you half jokingly dub yourself "The Shakespeare of Golf."
As much as I will miss Arizona, I couldn't be happier to be heading back to Texas. Opening Day is nearing, and everyone is getting antsy to play some games that count. Opening Day is awesome, for rookies and veterans alike. This is my third opening day, with a third different team. Last year I was with the Mets at the inaugural game at Citi Field. Even though my time with them was brief, to be there for a stadium opening of a such a storied organization was pretty momentus.
I just learned that Roger Staubach will be throwing out the first pitch, and was asked to give him some advice. I am totally unqualified to be giving advice. Just two weeks ago, I hit third base coach Dave Anderson with what was supposed to be an easy pitch during a team bunt drill. He was standing in the batters box, and I squared him up right in the thigh, it looked like it really hurt. Everyone had a good laugh, except for Dave. Hopefully, Mr. Staubach hits the catcher right in the mitt, and nobody gets hurt.