Friday, February 22, 2008

Mike Maroth: pitcher, blogger

We were making our daily round of reading tonight when we discovered, via RTC Talk, this gem of a site: Yes, that's the Royals' Mike Maroth, signed to a minor league contract earlier this month (in case you've forgotten or never noticed).

As RTC points out, Maroth isn't the only Royal to have a website, but as far as I can tell he's the only one with a blog. And one producing original content, too:

It has been a busy week. This time last week, we had just agreed to a contract with the Royals. Then on Monday evening, I was on a plane headed to Surprise, AZ for the start of Spring Training.

Looking this thing over, I've come to three conclusions:

1. This Mike will have no problem taking Mike Sweeney's vacated mantle of "That Really, Really Religious Guy." After he got cut by the Cardinals, he posted on Feb. 14:

During this time, God revealed a few things in His word to me. The first was in John 11 when Lazarus was sick, and Mary and Martha begged Jesus to visit him. Lazarus was one of Jesus' best friends. It took 2 more days before Jesus went to see Lazarus, and by that time Jesus saw him he was dead for 4 days. Jesus questioned Martha's faith in Him and after she demonstrated her faith, Jesus raised Lazarus from the grave. I learned that no matter how bad I might need God to answer me and rescue me from my circumstances, it is in His timing. And during the silent period when God doesn't respond, he wants me to show Him my faith in action.

It's tempting to call Maroth Lazarus from here on, but I'll resist. If you want to know the second thing revealed to him, click here and scroll to the bottom post.

2. He's got quite the dry sense of humor -- one might say so dry as to not notice his own ironic funnies. Example (from the Feb. 15 post):

Thursday was the first day of pitchers and catchers workouts. It was time to get working on PFPs (pitchers fielding practice). They are not the best part of being a pitcher, but are very important to do. I take pride in doing them the right way. It could be the difference in winning a game or losing.

My bold, because I'd like to point out that he was, while injured, technically still with the Tigers two years ago when Detroit's pitchers committed five errors in the World Series against the Cardinals. It made all the difference indeed.

3. Maroth's a family man, enjoys rooting for the underdog and is very religious (have we mentioned that?). A-okay to like, in other words. Of course, the degree to which we like him will depend on whether he can return to pre-surgery form -- he went under the knife to have bone chips removed from his elbow in 2006, ending a season in which he made nine starts and posted a 4.19 ERA -- and make the team. And even if he does, will he have enough to challenge Jorge De La Rosa for a job?

We'll find out soon enough, and maybe then get to read about it from the man himself.

POSTSCRIPT: No, we haven't forgotten about Sean Thompson, that pitcher/writer we wrote about last July. Alas, he was with the Royals for less than three weeks before the Rockies claimed him off waivers on July 21 -- damn Rockies! -- who then designated him for assignment just three weeks after that. He's currently a non-roster invitee with the NL champs in Tucson, a short drive south on I-10 from the Royals.

I just gave you more info about Sean Thompson than you could possibly have wanted to know.

UPDATE: Maroth's site: better than Brian Anderson's? Hope that Tommy John surgery went alright.

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