Waiting for the excitement to begin
Rowand, Sox teammates quietly prepare for World Series
Call it baseball's version of the calm before the storm.
The White Sox held their third and final workout Friday morning, after earning a few extra days off following their five-game dismissal of the Angels in the American League Championship Series. For Aaron Rowand and his teammates, the real excitement begins Saturday night.
At that point, according to Rowand, the White Sox will be on the final leg of their quest to achieve a goal held from the beginning of Spring Training. In Rowand's first World Series installment of his journal, done exclusively for MLB.com, he talks about the buildup going into Game 1, his philosophy on the series and his plans for the final night before the World Series begins.
That World Series excitement hasn't sunk in quite yet. Friday was another workout, a time to go out and prepare as much as possible and get ready to play. I'm sure Saturday, when we get here and feel the buzz around the park, the excitement will kick in more. Until then, there's not too much.
My plan tonight is to go home, hang out a little bit and then go grab some dinner. I'll get home early, and catch a movie or something. Just relax and get to bed early.
It's been a little bit different lately, in that a lot of people have been coming up to me in the street and at restaurants, but I have absolutely no problem with the way fans are getting into it. I'm glad the city is behind us and the fans are into it the way they are. It makes it a lot more enjoyable to see everyone pulling for this team and realize what we have accomplished so far and what we are trying for in the next week.
This series will come down to who executes and hits in timely situations, and who has the best pitching out there. We need to get our horses out there and have them throw the way they threw in the past two playoff series and in 95 percent of the regular season. Then, we need to go out and throw up as many runs as we can on Houston early. A lot will have to do with who jumps out early and puts the pressure on.
We haven't really looked back and surveyed what we already have done with this team or as a team. We've had a really good focus all year long with what we are trying to accomplish in the present, not looking back to see what we've already accomplished.
Honestly, I haven't thought about it and won't until we are done. When you are done and the season is over, you can look back and see what you have accomplished. Hopefully, it's a World Series championship.
We've played at Minute Maid Park before, during the preseason of 2003. So, I've been out there in center field. That hill and the flagpole is not something you let yourself think about when you are playing.
The chances of hitting the pole are slim and none anyway. You will end up on your face before running into that pole.
If you are running full speed trying to go up that hill, you are going to end up falling down before getting up to the top. You just play it by ear and go from there. You can't be hesitant because the hill is behind you. If I go down, I'll go down.
I'll try to catch it, if I have to crawl up the damn thing. Whatever I have to do to help this ball club win and reach our ultimate goal.
Ultimately, it's about us preparing to win a game, not just a World Series game, and do what we can do to get ourselves most prepared. That might be studying extra video, going over scouting reports or stuff we do all season long to prepare to win a ballgame.
It's been a wild ride so far. Now, we are trying everything we can to finish it off this week."
Aaron Rowand's postseason diary appears as told to Scott Merkin a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.