When Chris Wheeler and I were PR department teammates some three decades ago, he once said, “We should change the name of our department to the department of confirmation and denials.”
“Wheels” was referencing the fact news often got out before we announced it. That was during the time when there were electric typewriters, old-fashioned telephones, no voice mails. Sorry, Pony Express had long passed.
A major news conference was held in the Media Room at Citizens Bank Park late this afternoon to confirm two trades. In today’s world of instant news (cell phone, internet, texting, twitter, facebook and whatever else there is), these trades have dominated the news since Monday.
It became a game of hide and seek. Ruben and his staff and the PR staff had to hide from the seeking media until everything was finalized this afternoon.
Now, in a room as packed as it was for the postseason the last two autumns, we introduced our new pitching ace. 12 TV cameras were lined up in the back of the room, including one from Toronto.
Halladay wore #32 with the Blue Jays but that number is retired for Steve Carlton. So, he’ll wear #34, which was Cliff Lee’s uniform for three-plus months. #34 has become quite a collector’s dream.
Nine weeks from today, he’ll report to Bright House Field in Clearwater along with the other pitchers and catchers. First workout is the next day. Can’t wait.