June 17, 2007


Playing catch with dad (Joe Capozzi, 6/17/07, Palm Beach Post)

Dad's knuckles were bloody from working construction all day, but little James Shields never noticed. He just knew his father was home...

Time to play catch.

"He was beat down, tired, and all I wanted to do was play catch,'' said Shields, a pitcher for the Tampa Bay Devil Rays.

"I had two older brothers, so when they were always playing together, I got left out. But I used to play catch with my dad all the time. No matter how tired he was, he always played catch with me. That was one of the best things - just to grab my glove and ball and go play catch with my pops.''

There are bigger thrills in baseball, but the first for most players, no matter the level, is the time-honored ritual of playing catch with dad.

It's a special moment immortalized in two of the best baseball-themed movies of all time - Field of Dreams and The Natural. A moment remembered for its simplicity and meaning.

Posted by Orrin Judd at June 17, 2007 7:11 AM

A nice thought for today but it doesn't have to be baseball. My own memories of my father involve tools and learning to fix things. My dad was a building contractor, and I grew up "handy," as they say, able to do things other educated professionals couldn't imagine. With my children it has been outdoor sports and shooting.

The oldest is overseas now. In his military occupation not likely to need the skills he and I had worked on with rifle, pistol and even dummy grenades, but you never know. When he finished basic training with a badge for grenade-throwing, he told me, "Dad, it was just like you showed me, except they blow up."

Number Two son and I observed the day by participating in a special Father's day father-and-son pistol match and luncheon. His first pistol match. There will be more, I feel confident. No records set, but a good score in comparison to the other new young shooters.

Whatever the activity, baseball, tools, or pistols, those shared father-son experiences are among life's greatest moments.

Posted by: Lou Gots at June 17, 2007 8:02 PM