PRO BASEBALL

Wearing a suit post-baseball would suit Hawkins just fine

2013-06-30T17:00:00Z 2013-06-30T20:16:33Z Wearing a suit post-baseball would suit Hawkins just fineGeorge Castle Times Correspondent nwitimes.com
June 30, 2013 5:00 pm  • 

CHICAGO | LaTroy Hawkins surely has a post-playing career in mind.

Why, the New York Mets reliever, who starred in basketball at West Side, could coach either basketball or baseball, right?

“No coaching,” Hawkins said the other day at U.S. Cellular Field. “The front office. I’d like to be the assistant to the assistant to the assistant GM.”

But Hawkins, who will work in his 20th season at 41 in 2014 if the Mets or another team is willing, doesn’t quite see the end of his pitching in sight.

“I stay healthy, we’ll see,” said the former Cub, second of 10 teams for which he’s pitched over 906 games through the weekend.

“Travel is the toughest. The competing, the camaraderie in the clubhouse, hanging out with the guys that never gets old. But the traveling does, especially when you have young kids. I have an 11-year-old daughter that has a full schedule.”

For Hawkins’ family, though, the variety of him pitching with a new team almost every year is positive. He has logged two full seasons with only one of the teams – the Brewers -- for whom he has worked since he left the Twins, his original franchise, for the Cubs in 2004.

“They love being in different cities,” Hawkins said. “It’s like a geography class for my daughter. She’s spent time in 11 different cities.”

The 6-foot-5 Hawkins has maintained his weight between 210 and 220 pounds the past 14 years.

“It’s taking care of myself,” he said. “Eating the right foods. Not getting big in the off-season.

“I had my first steak in the few years (recently) in Philly. My wife and daughter wanted a steak, so I had one.”

Hawkins said a typical meal is brown rice and New Orleans-style jumbalaya from the Cheesecake Factory.

Almost every hurler experiments with new pitches in the bullpen. Hawkins, though, has not put them into practice.

“Never thought of a new pitch,” he said. “I still have trouble throwing the ones I started with. No knuckleballs. I throw more change ups last few years because I don’t throw as hard.”

Logical Pittsburgh destination for Sox?: A scout for the Pirates, suddenly blessed with a head of steam in the National League Central race, was intently watching the Sox over the weekend. The scout stayed to the bitter end of the marathon, eight-hour doubleheader that ended at 1 a.m. Saturday.

The Pirates could use one more hitter and one more reliever. The Sox have both commodities to spare.

Pleasing the bosses: There were two key numbers that De La Salle alum Brian Bogusevic racked up at Triple-A Iowa that drew the approving attention of Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer for his promotion to the majors last week.

Outfielder Bogusevic had a .418 on-base percentage and 40 walks in 78 games.

The list: The Billy Pierce statue was the big giveaway last weekend at The Cell. Lefty Pierce won 20 in 1956 and 1957. Other Sox 20-win southpaws: Doc White (1907), Reb Russell (1913), Thornton Lee (1941), Gary Peters (1964), Wilbur Wood (1971-71) and Jim Kaat (1974-75).

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