Lima Time Out

Of all the opposing players that come to Bank One Ballpark, the one my children most look forward to is Jose Lima. Granted, seeing Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa smashing the cover off the ball with monster home runs is interesting but it is Jose Lima with his knickers, black socks, and backwards hat that bring the biggest sparkle to their eyes. His personality and antics before the game are contagious. Given this man is a major star in his own right, it is refreshing to see him take time with the fans and bringing joy to children and adults alike. My kids first met Lima last season when he was nearly unhittable. He came out for batting practice and began to play to the crowd. At one point he took Tiffany’s hat and put it on his head and began dancing around the outfield. This brought laughs and smiles to all the kids except for Mallorie. Mallorie was a little put out because she suddenly realized that Tiffany had been wearing her hat without her permission. Lima saw Mallorie’s face and really played it up breaking down whatever barriers there were between these siblings. He finished by stopping and signing autographs for nearly 100 fans never once complaining. He genuinely friendly and cordial to everyone, especially the children. Major League players could learn a lot about giving back to the fans from a player like Jose Lima. As the schedule was released at the first of the year, this four game series brought one of the bigger arguments at our house as everyone wanted to attend these games. Mallorie won out for today’s game. She did learn from last year though and left her hat at home. She didn’t need any more dancing hats in the outfield.

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