Life in the Minors: Tom Oldham's Online Journal

What a difference from the last journal. This week the emails poured in and I have a bunch of great questions to cover. Thank you to everyone who has emailed because these questions are what really drive this journal. You can always email me throughout the season at With that said, here are my answers to your burning questions.

The first question dealt with our daily baseball schedule. The reader asks: because baseball is not the typical 9-to-5 job, is there a lot of down time or does it feel like your constantly on the go? Also, do you have time to enjoy life outside of baseball and do you ever feel like you need a break from your teammates being around them all the time?

While baseball isn't the typical 9-to-5, you get on a schedule pretty quickly. We arrive at the field for a seven o'clock game around 2 o'clock to get our early work in. Pitchers will run and throw their bullpens. Hitters will hit extra if need be. But, to be quite honest, every day is like groundhog day: wake up, have a couple hours before going to the field, early work, game, eat, have a couple hours to hang out, then go to sleep.

We enjoy things outside of baseball usually on our days off, but during the week baseball is the focus. As far as getting away from our teammates, I don't really ever feel that because we have time to ourselves at the hotel and the apartments.

The next reader had multiple questions so I'll cover them the best that I can. The first question dealt with how many pitches relievers vs. starters should typical have command of. In the question you answered this, because I would have to agree with you that typically starters have three command pitches and relief guys have two. All because of duration of outings and having another pitch to go to. Great question.

These next questions from the same reader will be answered in a rapid-fire fashion. So hold on. I would consider myself a command pitcher. Videotape is used frequently to find flaws. We use a bunch of preventative exercises for our arms everyday. Betancourt is going to be great for a long time. It is pronounced Uni-es-key Bet-in-cort. If I shared as many stories as Row has about being Rule V'ed I would have to write a novel rather than a journal (I can say that because we are friends). It's nice to get on the same page with the catcher because it makes the game flow. And finally, Jon Huber, to quote Anchorman, "Her hair smells of cinnamon, and it's wrong for her to be that hot!" (in regards to asking if Ashley Judd was attractive in person).

The next question asks how we stay in shape throughout the season. To answer this I'll run you through a typical five-day rotation for a starter.

Day One: pitch in the game
Day Two: lift upperbody, 30-minute run, light throwing
Day Three: lift lowerbody, light bullpen session, endurance running
Day Four: ab work, longer bullpen session, long sprint running
Day Five: light throwing and light running to get ready for your start the next day

Next is a question dealing with the team clown, the neat freak and the teammate with the sloppiest locker. Team clown would have to be Emiliano Fruto because he is always in charge of the music and dancing in the locker room. Neat freak would be my roommate, Jon Huber. Lets just say he has all white hangers, evenly spaced between themselves, and I've caught him straightening out his shower shoes so they are perfectly situated on the bottom part of his locker. Sloppiest locker would have to be Gary Harris, who lockers next to Huber and needless to say has never been caught spacing his hangers or straightening his shower sandals.

The last question deals with intro songs. Each intro song is the player's choice, both pitcher and hitter. Personally, I haven't picked one yet. Email me your suggestions, but remember I'm red-headed, freckle-faced, left-handed and from Nebraska. So if your first thought is Kelly Clarkson, I'm one step ahead of you, and please try again.

Thanks again for all the great questions and supporting us throughout the year. Remember to email your questions to

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