|Huff: Did you see how far you hit that one?!?|
Burrell: Yup. gone.
All baseball players on any level know the feeling: the smell of freshly cut grass, the itchy knee socks, and the warm summer air we gladly inhale.
These few feelings are unmistakably the experiences of baseball in all of its glory.
On a warm spring day, Pat Burrell couldn't wait to feel those same experiences. Wearing his brand new baseball uniform of the Bellarmine College Prep of San Jose, he was just a freshman and he was eager to get back on the field.
Growing up in this area, in high school he witnessed one of the greatest Giants teams to play in San Francisco. Watching guys like Will "The Thrill" Clark, Kevin Mitchell, Robby Thompson and Rick Reuschel was a privilege back in 1989 when Pat was just 14.
After a successful 4 years of high school football and baseball, he decided to attend the University of Miami while playing for their division 1 baseball team. The big righty was put in at third base in college, where he earned the 1996 College World Series "Most Valuable Player" in just his sophomore year, and was awarded the Golden Spike Award in 1998 as the nation's best college player.
Pat Burrell's dominant college career propelled him to be picked first overall in the MLB 1998 draft by the Philadelphia Phillies.
After just over a year of minor league ball, he made his debut with the Phillies in 2000. He continued to play for that team for a total of 8 years.
Burrell grew as a person and as a ball player in Philadelphia always being known as a great clubhouse guy and an amazing teammate. In his final year with the Phillies, he was a big part of the 2008 World Series champions, celebrating with the teammates he grew his major league career with.
It was a moment he would never forget.
Two years later, in a slump of all slumps with the Tampa Bay Rays, he was released from the roster and jobless.
That is until the Giants gave him a call.
He felt awaken. Signing to a minor league deal, he showed he still had some gas left in his tank, by smashing 18 home runs and 51 RBIs in just 96 games with the Giants.
Being reunited with his college teammate Aubrey Huff, Pat Burrell has never felt this much joy since winning the World Series in 2008.
He now prepares to face that same team he once celebrated with.
Going head to head with old friends such as Jimmy Rollins, Chase Utley, Ryan Howard, and Jason Werth,
this will prove to be a tough series for Pat.
Now with a young, fun team as the Giants, Pat will have to carry a big bat in order to come out of the series with a chance for another ring.
If I were to predict what's going through his mind, I'd say he's damn confident that will happen.