Thread: Soxfest 2013
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Old 01-28-2013, 10:04 PM
Nelfox02 Nelfox02 is offline
WSI Church Elder
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Bolingbrook, IL
Posts: 2,483

Originally Posted by tebman View Post
We spent some time late Saturday night loitering in the hotel lobby and saw Reed and Ramirez mixing with the crowd, though we didn't talk with them; they were surrounded by plenty of others who were. We talked briefly with Roland Hemond, but if Goose Gossage was there we missed him.

This was only my third SoxFest. ChiSoxGirl is the champ, having attended the last 20, and I've always deferred to her judgment in SoxFest logistics. Her advice was to hang around the lobby to see Sox players outside their natural habitat. Had I been a keener observer I might have seen Gossage.

SoxFest really is total immersion therapy when hot-stove talk is at a low ebb. Autographs are great for collectors, but for me that process it more about getting a chance, however brief, to tell the player (or former player) that I appreciate his work. Pete Ward was there this year, and I was able to talk with him long enough to let him know that I was glad to see him after 45 years and that I appreciated his work too. He genuinely thanked me and told me how much he enjoyed being there.

Love the seminars. It's to the organization's credit that players, as well as Ventura and Hahn, take unrehearsed questions from the floor. In my experience the questions have been insightful and interesting and I think the players appreciate that. These folks know their baseball and they know their White Sox history, and it shows in the quality of the questions and the thoughtful responses given by the players and staff. I learn something at every session.

The best example was Aaron Rowand's sincerity when he was asked about his reaction to being traded after the 2005 season. He didn't fall back on bromides and clichés, but said without hesitation that he was devastated. He spoke of coming up through the Sox organization, his experience in the city, of being a Bears fan, and how he was moved when someone in the autograph session said to him, "welcome home."

As a fan I understood exactly what he was talking about and I understood how he felt. Between the quality of the seminars, the hilarious anecdotes among the current and former players, and the chance to thank them all, it's a great weekend. And all the while surrounded by hundreds of others who share my zeal. For my money, all of that is the best part of SoxFest.

It was totally by chance for Gossage---my friend and I came off the elevator bank and as we headed toward the lobby I saw him at the check in desk, he was the only person there and at first I wasnt even sure it was him....we stood there waiting for him to finish checking out and he noticed us and walked over and asked what we had. I heard he signed later when getting back to the hotel but that was a rumor. I found out from someone in the know that the reason he was there was due to the fact he had to be in town Sunday to be honored at a dinner with LaRussa so he elected to stay at the same hotel the night before to see him and a few other old friends
A swing, and a high fly ball, deep right center field. This is way back in the gap. And it's a goner! A White Sox winner! A winner on a Podsednik home run, and the White Sox go up two games to nothing in the 2005 World Series.

John Rooney October 23 rd 2005....happy 25th B-Day Nelfox02!!!
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