It’s playoff time … so stay hydrated
You wake up today excited, like you do most days. These just mean a little bit more. There are natural emotions that go with it. If you don’t experience that, you’re not a human being. That being said, you just go about your business, same as you’ve always done and enjoy the fact that we’re in the playoffs. We’re doing something that’s extremely special. We were a team at the beginning of June we were a team that was a dead issue. We’ve still got a chance to win a World Championship. That’s the coolest part about today. It’s just the first step. Hopefully, we’re on an 11-win journey to winning a World Series ring.
So you stick with your routine. For me, it’s getting a big bag full of little bottles of water and taking them to guys during batting practice. In most visiting parks, they think I’m the water boy. That’s fine with me.
I started doing it my rookie season with the A’s, with Octavio Dotel and Ricardo Rincon. They wanted water during BP. I was a rookie. They were veterans. I obliged. I had a good year, was the American League Rookie of the Year. I did it the next year and we went to the ALCS. By that point it had become habit, so I’ve carried it here.
Everybody likes it. You stand out there during BP and you don’t get anything to drink, unless you run all the way in to the dugout and run all the way back out. Everybody seems to take a pretty good liking to it. I keep my boys hydrated. You’re not going to see anybody cramping up out there, that’s for sure.
I’m a veteran now. But that’s part of being on a team. You take care of each other. Guys pick each other up in all kinds of different ways. It’s another something to focus on, part of a routine that helps you stay calm and pass the time.
I did it the whole time when I was injured, out with a biceps tendon strain. You’ve got to keep it going, especially when the team get on a roll.
I don’t do it during Spring Training because there are 62 guys. Sixty-two bottles of water is something like 70 pounds. September is always a little tough because you’ve got 40 guys out there. But not that it’s the playoffs, it’s easier.
It’s all water, except Jason Marquis likes a red sports drink and Garrett Atkins likes blue or green. I take special requests whenever I can.