Time Out With Rachee (AKA Ricky)

Okay, okay.  I apologize for the lack of baseball/Ricky related posts on my baseball traveler blog. However, in my defense, he has been on the road forever for most of the time we’ve been here.  Without further ado, I bring you my one on one interview with the infamous Rachee!

What is your favorite thing about Taiwanese baseball?

   Playing 3 or 4 times a week and having so many off days.  Having so much time to spend with my family.(insert my laugh here, you’ve been home 2 days out of 15, whatever) Finding out that baseball players are the same wherever you are, even if you don’t speak the same language.

How is pitching in Taiwan different then in the States?

   They have really, really good hitters. Not for power, but for averages.  The ball is like a diamond baseball used in high school, so I’ve had to make a few adjustments.  The fans chant and beat drums when you pitch.  The pitchers throw in between innings because they only get 5 warm up pitches on the mound.  The pitching coach stands behind you when you warm up.  The pitching coach makes all the moves for the pitchers, the manager has no say.  If you hit someone in the head, like my friend Lou Pote(sorry Lou), you are automatically thrown out of the game.  It’s considered a dangerous pitch.  Oh yeah, most everyone on the team smokes and dips.  They also smoke in the dugout.  If they light up on the field, I would think I was back home at Ford’s softball field.  HAHA

So how have you adjusted to the differences here?

   I have changed my arm angle and now throw sidearm.  I have been throwing my curveball a lot more because the seams are higher. 

You were supposed to be a starter, but I notice that you are a closer?  So, what happened there?

   The pitching coach said that they needed a closer instead of a starter, so I was asked to become a closer.  Since I’ve been a reliever for most of my career, I felt comfortable with that.

What is your record?

    I have 1 win, 1 loss, and 3 saves.  I have no idea what my other stats are because it’s all written in Chinese.  So I know if I get released, it’s not very good.  HAHA  But really so far, so good.

What is your favorite baseball memory so far here in Taiwan?

   Clinching the first half was exciting.  There was champagne and warm beer, that just got pulled out of a hot van, on the field.  The cheering section, aka drum beaters, flag wavers, and chanters, came out on the field to celebrate.  They took us to a nice dinner with Taiwanese food while we were still stinky in our uniforms.  That is a true story.

What is your strangest baseball experience so far?

  Well, I have a couple.  This is the first time that I’ve played on an all dirt infield.  Catchers and pitchers are not afraid to show up an umpire.  The catcher will turn around and ask the umpire “Are you sure that’s not a strike.”  This is the first time I’ve ever seen a bench clear on an umpire.  Our third baseman was called out at first base because he missed the bag.  Our team cleared the bench to gang up on the umpire.  I was the last one sitting because I had no idea what was going on.  Nothing came of it though.

What are some similarities between American baseball and Taiwanese baseball?

   All ball players are the same because we all slide and play the game hard. 

That’s all we have time for this evening.  If you have any questions for Rachee, please leave them in the comment section, and I will make sure that he answers them.  I will definitely try to have some more baseball related posts in the future. 


PS  It’s sad when my best pic of him is one off of the tv!  We’ve only gotten to go to 3 games at our field!


2 Responses to “Time Out With Rachee (AKA Ricky)”

  1. 1 Ricky Sweet June 16, 2008 at 5:23 pm

    thats a good picture its his best side. 🙂

  2. 2 Alisa June 22, 2008 at 3:09 pm

    This is the cutest interview! I was laughing so hard! I’m so glad you all have such a great sense of humor!

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