9 Things I’d Like to Ride to the Mound

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Sean Doolittle, Pitcher / Oakland Athletics - The Players' Tribune

Taking a brief hiatus from baseball while my arm healed has made me hungrier than ever to get back on the field. While being a relief pitcher has its share of perks and pressure, one of the highlights of the job is having the opportunity to trot down to the mound when my team needs me. Major League Baseball tends to skew more traditional, but if it were up to me, these would be my preferred forms of mound transportation.

Katy Perry’s Giant Lion from Super Bowl XLIX

When you are coming in from the bullpen, it is important to “announce your presence with authority,” as “Nuke” LaLoosh famously put it in Bull Durham. What better way to do that than by standing on the back of a giant robotic tiger (or lion?) that walks you in from the bullpen? By the time the other team realizes that I am not Katy Perry, the game will be over and I will be back on my giant lion. (Or is it a tiger?)

Grave Digger

Can you imagine?! A monster truck! Climbing in that thing from the bullpen and driving it onto the field, maybe doing some donuts on the infield or some sick jumps off the mound before dropping me off to pitch? I don’t even know why I’m bothering with the rest of this list. I want to only come into games riding a monster truck from now on.

Surrey Bike

In the bullpen, we like to think of ourselves as a collective unit — a team within a team. That’s why I would like it if when one of our guys gets called into a game, we all come in with him. A surrey bike would be a great way for everyone in the pen to “pitch in” and help get our guy from the bullpen to the field. Together we could go over scouting reports or play car games on the trip to the mound as we all “shoulder” the load (I’m sorry).

Marty McFly’s Hoverboard

It would be awesome to come in from the bullpen on a hoverboard, as long as there is no water on the field of course. Now if I could just find a pair of those high-top Nike sneakers he was wearing…

Heelys

Everyone knows that Heelys make you cooler. It’s a scientific fact. Once the other team sees me gliding in from the bullpen wearing a pair of these bad boys, they would finally see just how much cooler I am than them. After that kind of dejection, those hitters would have no shot.

Ghost Ride The Whip

Out here in the East Bay, we can’t help but keep things hella hyphy (still not entirely sure what that means, but I think it’s a good thing). When they “Tell Me When To Go” into the game, I think it would be great to add some Bay Area flair and get out of the car and ghost ride it so hard that E-40 would turn back into an A’s fan.

Falkor the Luckdragon

I can’t think of a better way to get to the mound than on the wings of a luckdragon — circling high above the stadium, soaring amongst the clouds on your way to the mound. And it would also be awesome to bring some of Falkor’s luck into the game with me, because he’s a luckdragon, so yeah.

Atlasphere

Like every good American, I watched a lot of American Gladiators growing up, and the Atlasphere was always one of my favorite events. I would love to climb in one of those giant steel hamster wheels, charge out onto the field and stop right on top of the mound. Then maybe my teammates would finally start calling me by my American Gladiator nickname like I’ve been asking them to: Ginger Snap.

Elliot’s Bike from E.T.

How great would it be to throw your final warmup pitch, hop onto Elliott’s bike, hit the ramp of the bullpen mound and fly to the mound? By the time the inning ended, the opposing hitters would be ready to “phone home.” (Again, I apologize. I can’t help it.)

My 5 Favorite Places to Watch a Game

When I’m not at the ballpark, I like to spend most of my time watching sports in some capacity. One of my favorite perks of this job is the ability to travel to different cities around the country to catch a game. So with this in mind, here’s a list of my favorite venues to watch a sporting event.

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