Happy Holidays

The Christmas holidays are quickly approaching. Have you all finished your shopping? I am done, at least for now. I say that everyday but then an idea pops up and I rush to the mall or specialty store to get another present. One of my other problems is that I buy many Christmas gifts during the baseball season. So that no one finds the presents I stick them in hiding places and then forget about the gifts or were I put them. On a few occasions I have found hidden gifts well after Christmas. Oh well there are always birthdays.

Wreath_1I can’t help but notice with the mad dash to the malls and the stores many have forgotten the true spirit of Christmas. It is not to see who can buy the most expensive gift or even find the best bargain. Christmas is a time for giving and sharing, not so much material gifts but peace, love and joy. I got to tell you, I don’t see much peace, love and joy on the roads or busy stores this time of year. Let us all be examples of peace, love and joy through our actions and how we treat people everyday. Maybe that one small thing you do to help someone or make them smile will be passed from them on to someone else and so forth and so on. Before to long it may spread and we will see the true holiday spirit evolve in people around town. Make it a point to show a smile, spread joy. Say hello to a stranger, spread peace. Hold open a door or let someone merge in front of you on the road, and spread love.

I will be heading to Dallas this week to visit the Children’s Hospital and I believe that in those children’s eyes I will find all three of those characteristics I am talking about. If children with life threatening illnesses and traumas can be stewards of the Christmas spirit then that is not too much to ask for.

Also, I will be attending a banquet to rap up the Toys for Tots drive to ensure that all children will have a Merry Christmas. Afterwards, I’ll be on a helicopter with the Marines to drop presents off to children in the Metroplex area as well as a trip to Port Arthur to deliver gifts and greetings to children and families affected by Hurricane Rita.

Catch22Lastly, don’t forget to visit the Catch 22 For Blue website, http://www.catch22forblue.org . We’ve updated the site and included information on the Catch 22 For Blue Toy Drive, a Celebrity Gallery, and the Catch 22 For Blue school program.  Also, please make sure to sign up to receive the Catch 22 For Blue newsletter by visiting the website.

Thanks for all the support & don’t forget…Spread the spirit.
Happy Holidays!

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David Dellucci

Catch 22 For Blue Foundation

http://www.catch22forblue.org

Getting Out There!

Yesterday (Tuesday Nov. 15th) was a very good day for me and the Catch 22 for Blue foundation. I flew into Dallas and got the day started off early by doing the morning show for KDFI 27. I did three segments including a segment on cooking in which I cooked a recipe that I learned from my mother called blonde brownies. I hope some of you enjoyed the recipes!  The showDavids were lots of fun but the main reason for doing them was to promote the kickoff for our first annual toy drive. Catch22forblue has teamed up with the US Marine Corps and Toys For Tots to gather as many toys as we can and hand them out to the children around the Metroplex area. With the addition of the people who have been relocated due to the hurricane we will need to raise the total amount of toys donated through the program by 30%. We have arranged, with the help of Major Paul Courtaway, to drop off the presents by way of a Marine helicopter. We are also working out a way to fly down to Port Arthur, Texas and drop of gender and age specific presents to many children who were affected by Hurricane Rita. I will write more on the charity that we will be assisting in that area at a later time.  Please don’t forget to visit our website for more info.

Shortly after announcing the calendar for the upcoming events with Toys For Tots I had the opportunity, with the help of Brookshire Farms, to hand out Thanksgiving meals to 25 families from New Orleans who have relocated to the Arlington area with the help of two local churches, North Davis Church of Christ and Highland Park Presbyterian Church. With some of the donations that were sent to the Catch 22 for Blue foundation we were able to purchase complete meals for these families.  Everything needed for Thanksgiving from tea bags to dinner rolls to pecan and sweet potato pies were packed in bags and sent home with these families. Brookshire topped it off with donating the turkeys…THANK YOU to all who have helped us in our efforts, it is much appreciated!

It touched my heart to see how happy and appreciative everyone was. It is sad to know that there are families scattered all over the country who are having to spend the holidays away from familiar surroundings, away from friends, and away from their homes. What we did today and what we will continue to do is make them feel comfortable in there new communities and let them know that they are special and are not forgotten especially during the holidays.

Thanks again for staying in touch.  Don’t forget to visit my website: www.catch22forblue.org. We are still actively accepting donations of all amounts.  Any assistance is greatly appreciated, especially during the holiday season!

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David Dellucci

World Series Thoughts

What an exciting World Series this is turning out to be. The last two outings for Brad Lidge have been rough. Having faced him a few times in interleague games I can tell you that he has great stuff with one of the better sliders in the majors. Pujols’ and Podsednik’s homers are examples that even though Lidge is a very good pitcher even he can be hit. When you throw a pitch to a big league hitter anything can happen.
    His last two homeruns given up remind me of the 2001 World Series in which our closer for the Diamondbacks was Byung-Hung Kim. He gave up two homeruns on two consecutive nights with two outs in World Series games 4 and 5 which allowed the Yankees to take the series the distance. We still won that World Series so don’t count Houston out.
    They call it the World Series for a reason. Major League baseball players are the best in the world. Major leaguers come from all over the globe. United States, Dominican Republic, Cuba, Puerto Rico, Canada, Australia, China, Korea, Aruba, and Panama are some of the countries that are birth places of current players.
   I hate to bring it back up but I remember before Game 1 of the 2001 series each individual player had to go into the media room and look into the camera and say their name, position and country they were born in. David Dellucci, outfielder, United States of America. Why? Because the World Series are televised all over the world to many many countries. That is pretty awesome to know that people are watching these games in countries that I can’t even spell.
Do you think the Series is over? How can Houston come back? I know these questions are on everyone’s minds. It won’t be easy but it can be done. Take a never say die attitude and play to win not to lose. Watching all of the camera shots at the guys on the bench last night, I could see that the Astros were down on themselves. They appeared to be thinking about what they were not doing instead of what they need to do. It is easy to focus on the negative. BE POSITIVE!
    The Astros have to trick their mind into breaking the game down as much as they can. What? OK here it goes. ‘We’ve got to win 4 games in a row.’ Wrong way to think. That is extremely tough to do in the Major Leagues and even tougher in the World Series. Break it down. How does a team ultimately win the game? Win every inning. Easy. Let’s go even further. "We’ve got to beat the other team EVERY pitch of the game."
    Confused? When hitting your ultimate goal is to get a hit. When pitching your goal is to get an out. Battle pitch by pitch. Not ‘at bat’ by ‘at bat.’ Win each pitch and you will win the ‘at bat.’ Win the most ‘at bats’ and you will win the game.
    Also, don’t miss your pitch. Houston seems to be fouling off or flying out on pitches that they should be hammering. Maybe they were trying to hard. I think the Astros had a defensive mindset at the plate. ‘Don’t strike out. Don’t swing at a bad pitch.’ You can’t take that attitude and succeed. Their bodies know what to do. Their minds are getting in the way. Let your instincts take over and you’ll be surprised how much better you play.
    Break it down. Clear your mind. See the ball as well as you can. Put a good swing on it. Watch the ball hit the bat. This doesn’t guarantee a hit but it makes your chances a whole lot better. Lastly, BE POSITIVE!
I’ll be back after the Series!
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Around Town, Baseball Thoughts

I can already tell that things here are different in Louisiana. Driving back home I saw firsthand that Katrina and Rita are still affecting those of us who live in Louisiana. There are many more work vehicles on the interstate. electric companies on the move, camouflage vehicles (maybe National Guard) towing machinery, and lines of trucks labeled F. E. M. A…all signs that construction and the road to recovery is underway.

The lack of gasoline is also a major problem in Louisiana. My family warned me before my trip back home that I should not let my gas gauge go under half a tank. I now know why. Even as far up as Shreveport and Alexandria there were gas pumps with covers on them. I knew it was a sign that things would be worse the further south I went.

One thing that people have always commented about after finding out that I am from Louisiana is how bad the road construction is. I couldn’t help but wonder how difficult it must have been for evacuees to be stuck in traffic because the road construction probably slowed travel down possibly to a halt, not to mention the massive movement of people on the road at one time.  I have been hearing how traffic in Baton Rouge is terrible considering that the normal population was around 450,000 and now is anywhere from 800,000 to 1 million people. The interstate system was bad before, but now it is much worse.

I headed to my father’s cabin in Southwest Mississippi to help with minimal repairs on the roof and some downed trees as a result of the hurricanes. Heading up I55 it was apparent that even though it was 100 miles inland Katrina was still packing a large amount of power. Massive trees were uprooted all along the interstate. I could also see evidence of tornados which may have spun off leaving a path of ripped trees into the forest.

After the repairs to my father’s cabin were done, next on the list was to repair my mother’s roof which was damaged more from Hurricane Rita than Katrina. She had water dripping from the ceiling in three areas of her home. My brother in-law and I found where two of the leaks came from and the third we believe may have been caused by the rain blowing horizontal under the shingles from gusting winds. Baton Rouge saw more rain and wind from Hurricane Rita that Katrina.

Other than helping out the family with repairs, I have been busy getting settled back at home.  I’ve also been appearing on quite a few sports talk shows discussing the baseball playoffs and Catch 22 for Blue.

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I haven’t been keeping up with the playoffs. If I’m not in them I really don’t care about what goes on. Unfortunately, I heard there was a really crazy ending to game #2 in the Angels and White Sox series. It is a shame that a game, especially one of such importance, should be decided on a controversial call. Should there be instant replay in baseball? What about only in the playoffs?  Either way, congrats to the White Sox on making it to the World Series.

On another note, I’ve been asked several times if Buck Showalter purposely took our key players out of the game so that we would lose to the Angels and give them home-field advantage in the playoffs over the Yankees. I honestly don’t believe the thought even crossed Buck’s mind. The reason Mike, Tex and Hank were taken out early was to give the fans an opportunity to send cheers to the guys in appreciation for having a great year and playing as hard as they could everyday. That was a time for those players to give a little wave back in thanks for the fans supporting them so well. It was also an opportunity to reward the September call ups by letting them play in the final game of the season. We all did our best to win that game as we have every other game.

That’s it for now, please check back soon!

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David Dellucci, Catch 22 for Blue
Have questions about the Catch 22 for Blue Foundation?  Please eMail us at info@catch22forblue.com

For those interested in learning more about the Catch 22 for Blue Foundation and the Louisiana Lagniappe 22 Bracelet, please visit my website at http://www.catch22forblue.org

End of Season

Hello everyone,

Thanks for all of the great comments on my first blog…Sorry for the delay on getting to my second entry, but here it goes.

When the end of the baseball season comes to a close my list of things to do grows larger and larger. It is a sad time because you think about all the goals you wanted to accomplish, both as a team and as an individual, and realize that the season is over and you have to wait until the next year starting from scratch.

Baseball is a team sport but if you don’t do well as an individual you can’t help the team win. Also, if you do poorly as an individual you might find yourself looking for a new profession! If someone would have told me I would hit 29 home runs and score 97 runs this year I would have laughed and said I WISH. Now that it’s over and I am recapping the season, I am very disappointed and angry that I didn’t hit 30 and score 100. Funny how that works. The six games that I missed during the last road trip might have played a big part in coming up just short. At least I have a goal for next year and something to think about all off season.

As I was closing my accounts for electricity, TV, lease, packing to head to Louisiana, and finishing all of my business at the ballpark my phone was ringing off the hook with news that the Rangers were not going to offer a contract to Kenny Rogers and GM John Hart was stepping down. It will be different not seeing Kenny pitch in a Rangers uniform next year. As a team it will be tough to lose your ace on the pitching staff. I wish him well wherever he goes as he will be missed on the club. I think Kenny will have success and may be better suited as a number 2 starter for a number of teams.

As far as the General Manager position, it will be interesting to watch as Jon Daniels takes over. It is a tough position to be in. If the team does well the GM goes unnoticed, if the team does poorly, the GM takes the blame. I’ve dealt with Jon last year through contract negotiations and couldn’t have been happier with the way he conducted business. I have confidence in his abilities and think he will do well. Does Theo Epstein ring a bell? Boston won the World Series a few years after he took over so the fact that Jon is only 28 years old doesn’t make him less qualified.

Thanks for checking in with me.  I’m back home in Louisiana, will be out assessing Katrina damage over the next month.  I will also be making a slew of radio appearances over the next few weeks discussing the playoffs and my nonprofit Catch 22 for Blue.  Make sure to keep checking the blog, I’ll do my best to keep it updated regularly over the offseason.

Don’t forget to visit my website, www.catch22forblue.org

We’ve uploaded a bunch of new photos in the gallery section and have updated a few other pages as well.

Thanks for checking in.

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David Dellucci

Catch 22 for Blue Welcome!

Hello everyone,

First off I want to thank everyone who has supported the Catch 22 for Blue Foundation hurricane relief efforts. For those that want more information on the foundation, the Louisiana Lagniappe 22 Blue Bracelet, and our relief efforts please visit the website at www.catch22forblue.org

Let me give you some information about the foundation.  I decided to start the Catch 22 for Blue foundation to help as many people and families as I could in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.  I feel that the Catch 22 website can be used as a way to spread awareness for the families whose lives have been altered or destroyed by this terrible tragedy. My heart pours out to the residents of Southern Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Texas because I know that they are extremely hard working people full of pride and an attitude toward life that we should all take note of. They are loyal, caring, and deeply rooted in their lifestyle set by their generations past. New Orleans was flooded and thousands lost their lives, homes and businesses, but also understand that there were many, many other Parishes (in other states they are called Counties) that were leveled and some completely destroyed. We didn’t see most them on television because of their smaller populations and because there was no way to get to them, but they were hit just as hard nonetheless. Also, let us not forget the residents of the Mississippi Gulf Coast as well. This area may have been hit even harder but the attention they received is far less than they deserved.

Today, as Hurricane Rita has recently passed it has again affected Louisiana and re-flooded many of the same areas that Katrina hit. Rita also affected Texas, and (for obvious reasons) I have an interest in assisting Texas residents affected by Rita.  Many of my teammates where extremely worried about their families in the Houston area. With the season quickly coming to an end, I am searching for families and individuals who are in need of assistance in one form or another…whether it be assistance via the Catch 22 for Blue Foundation or just a friendly smile. If you or someone you know is in need of assistance, please contact us via eMail at info@catch22forblue.com

There are many who evacuated as ordered by government officials and are living in cars, hotels or with friends. Many who have done everything they were supposed to but are still suffering from the affects of the hurricanes.  I am committed to helping those affected by the recent wave of hurricanes that have hit Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Texas.

For those that live in the Arlington area, the Texas Rangers and the USA+ Foundation have generously allowed our foundation to sell the Louisiana Lagniappe 22 bracelets at Ameriquest Field during the final homestand of the 2005 season, September 30th, October 1st & 2nd against the Angels.  The USA+ Foundation will match all donations dollar for dollar up to $25,000.  I personally want to challenge all of the Rangers fans to help me support those affected by the recent hurricanes and please make a donation during the final Texas Rangers homestand of the 2005 season.

Finally, for those wondering why I have not been in the lineup, I recently strained my calf…I hope to be back in the lineup in a day or two.  Keep checking the blog or the website, I’ll have more information on my status as soon as I know more.

Thanks for taking the time to read my first blog.  Please check back often as I plan on updating the blog regularly.

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David Dellucci

For those interested in learning more about the Catch 22 for Blue Foundation and the Louisiana Lagniappe 22 Bracelet, please visit my website at www.catch22forblue.org

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