Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Ollie the Bat Dog

We played a 4 game set in New Hampshire last week. Winning 3 out of 4 was a nice feeling, but it wasn't the highlight of the trip. Seeing Roger Clemens at the field was a surprise as well, but still, not the most outstanding memory of Manchester, NH. After the first batter of the game popped up to center field, I saw something I will never forget...Ollie the bat dog.

It kind of shocked me as I saw the blonde canine trotting up to the plate. He sniffed the bat a little bit, as if to make sure it was up to MiLB regulations, then chomped down on the barrel just below the label. I suppose that he has been trained to feel the geometric weighted center of the bat so that it remains balanced in his mouth as he retrieves it. Ollie dropped the bat on queue at the trainer's feet, sat down facing home plate and waited for his treat. He was better at his job than most human bat boys. It was amazing! But i guess I shouldn't be too surprised at his bat retrieving prowess as he is the son of the Trenton Thunder's bat dog, Chase. I realize that I shouldn't be in favor of nepotism in the bat dog industry, but they're so darn cute. 

Anyway, seeing Ollie at work for the Fisher Cats made me think of what it would be like if all bat boys were replaced with bat dogs. I've compiled a list...

1) Slobber replaces pine tar as primary bat condiment. 
2) Batters not only compare ball marks on bats, but teeth marks too. 
3) Retrieving foul balls gets more entertaining, but now requires a game of tug-o-war upon completion.
4) Expect broken bats to be handled with much more care...and confusion. 
5) Umpires have to carry Doggy doo-doo bags for when nature calls. 
6) David sunflower seeds comes out with new line of salty shelled dog treats. 
7) Bring-your-dog-to-the-park day raises a whole new set of issues. Including canine jealousy. 
8) No longer have to worry about cats, squirrels, or any other varmints entering the field of play.
9) Dog Fashion designers have to team up with Majestic to make authentic on-field jerseys in dog sizes. 
10) Chatter from the dug out would get a little "ruff"er (I'm sorry).

That's just a few. If you've got some thoughts, let me know what you think!