Mark Hendrickson hasn’t pitched in the big leagues since 2011. In 2014 he pitched in the independent Atlantic League. He’ll turn 41 in June. But he’s down in Sarasota at an Orioles minicamp making one last go of it. Oh, and he has something else that makes him different than most pitchers:
“I’m a grandfather, for goodness sake, and that was two months ago,” Hendrickson said. “Now there’s extra motivation. How many active grandfathers have been in the big leagues? Well, that right there is motivation in itself.
Roch Kubatko’s story talks about Hendrickson changing his arm slot, which could be a big deal for tall guy like him. And getting himself ready to compete, which is a big deal for an old guy like him.
Sorta want to see a grandfather pitch in the big leagues.
“Do players and managers realize how much they have slowed the pace of action in a baseball game? . . . Everybody complains about the pace of play in today’s game, what with all the strikeouts, pitching changes, mound conferences and so much time between pitches. But it occurred to me that the players and managers don’t even realize how much they have slowed the game in such a short period of time.”
— Tom Verducci, May 2014. But it could be any number of people inside or outside of baseball who annual level the same criticism over and over again.
In other news:
No, one sport being slow and boring and tedious doesn’t mean another sport isn’t. But let’s put our criticisms in perspective.
Anthony Fenech of the Detroit News gives us an update on the health of Miguel Cabrera:
Cabrera underwent surgery last October to remove bone spurs from his right ankle and repair a stress fracture in his foot. He hit .313/.371/.524 with 25 home runs and 109 RBI over 159 games last season. Imagine what he would’ve done, you know, if his foot worked properly.