April 22, 2009
As everyone knows, road trips are a part of baseball. When looking ahead at the schedule, we players always note the different types of road trips. There are short 2-4 day trips like our first one in Toronto to begin the season, there are the normal 4-7 day trips and, finally, there are trips that last 10 days or longer.
Currently, we're on a 10-day road trip that includes West Coast travel (Seattle and Anaheim) before finally heading back toward the Midwest where we finish up with Kansas City.
People always ask if it is hard being gone that long away from Detroit on road trips, but one of the things that a lot of people don't realize is that even though our home is Detroit, it's still sort of like being on the road. We're usually gone about half of every month during the season and most people's hometowns aren't Detroit. So it isn't too difficult — at least for me — to have to pack a bag for 10 days, and move from hotel to hotel and take flight after flight.
My experiences in college, the minor leagues, and first few years of the big leagues have gotten me used to packing and unpacking. My mom said she doesn't know how we do it, and how we don't forget stuff in hotels or apartments since we are always on the move. I did lose my entire DVD collection in a hotel in Harrisburg, Pa., when I was in the minor leagues, but haven't lost anything major since. Amazingly, I don't really have any stories of teammates losing anything either. I guess we're just experienced at packing our bags and getting out!
Long road trips are cool for me, because I think it is actually less tiring than a short road trip. I can sleep on any plane. I have fallen asleep on a flight from Detroit to Cleveland which is a 30 minute flight. As long as I have a window seat, I am good to go. Most hotel beds I have no problem sleeping in as long as I have an AC control. I like to keep the room cold, and the noise helps to sleep. We also get to arrive at the ballpark an hour or so later than we would normally in Detroit.
Long road trips also allow me to see a lot of friends and family throughout the country and Canada. Usually when seeing and catching up with them, I get a chance to eat some great food in the different cities. In Seattle, I got a chance to eat at a new place called Barrio. It was a really nice place with very good food and seafood ceviche.
Here in the LA area I ate a place called Piknic. It was another nice place with outdoor seating, which we need in the heat out here, and good food yet again. The other day, it reached 100 degrees in downtown LA ... but that's for another blog.
Finally, I just want to add in one other unrelated thing — I want to put in my support for Matt Giraud, the American Idol contestant from Kalamazoo, Michigan. He has been tearing it up so far, and hopefully he makes it to the next round.
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Curtis Granderson plays center field for the Detroit Tigers and his blog will appear regularly on Yahoo! Sports' Big League Stew during the 2009 season. Make sure to check out and support his Grand Kids Foundation.