ISOLATION INSPIRED: Calling balls and strikes at home


Freelance journalist Ted Gruber dons his umpire gear inside as games are canceled.

CHICAGO – Don’t forget that it’s not just high school, college, and professional athletes that are currently on break as the COVID-19 pandemic continues.

Many youth players and adults who play sports for recreation have their activities shut down due to the ban on large gatherings along with the closing of many parks. It also doesn’t just include players, with many officials and umpires currently on the sidelines as well.

With that being the case, one umpire decided that he was going to stay on his game while staying at home.

Freelance journalist Ted Gruber was “Isolation Inspired” to make this video on Twitter where he puts on the umpire’s mask. With a balls and strikes counter in hand, he started barking out calls as if he was behind the plate again.

Gruber is an umpire on the side, and clearly misses the job as sports are on hold.

Meanwhile Cubs outfielder Ian Happ is using his time away from baseball to start a new media venture with a couple of his roommates.

He launched “The Compound” this week along with Nico Hoerner, Dakota Mekkes, and Zach Short. They’re discussing their lives while staying at home, some of their favorite players of all time, and more.

They have already cranked out two podcasts, with Cubs outfielder Kyle Schwarber joining for the second episode.


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