On the road
With an off day today, it seems like the perfect time to answer the question that was asked earlier this week about what kinds of things travel with the Dodgers throughout a road trip.
First, I spoke with Dodger Clubhouse Manager Mitch Poole, who said that he brings about 9,600 pounds of baseball gear on every road trip and about 4,500 pounds of personal luggage. This does not include the approximately 1,500 pounds of television and radio equipment that goes with the team on every trip.
Before each trip, every player packs his own baseball bag, which includes two of their own jerseys, pants, bats, gloves, shoes, batting gloves, etc.
Included in what Mitch brings is two of each size BP top and uniform just in case we make a trade while we’re on the road. He also has more than enough actual uniform numbers in case of a trade or call-up.
For each player, he brings six new bats in addition to the six that they bring with them. He makes sure that he has enough batting practice hats, game-fitted hats, adjustable hats, t-shirts, dry fit shirts, long sleeves, fleeces, pine tar, weighted bats, resin bags and just about everything else we can think of that a guy might request on the road. His 9,500 pounds also includes all the medical supplies that our trainers bring with them on the road.
We bring one case of BP baseballs with us for each game we’ll play and the home team provides us with another one once we get there.
I also talked to team travel manager, Scott Akasaki, whose job it is to make sure all the flights are set, rooms are booked, buses are waiting for us at each point in the day and that the equipment truck gets where it needs to go. Scott also handles all ticket requests on the road for players and takes care of ordering all the food on the plane, as well as a ton of other daily tasks. He said that a typical flight includes about 65 people, which is usually about 27 players (including DL guys), a manager and seven coaches, four medical staff members, the video coordinator, the team travel manager, five broadcasters, baseball operations staff (either Ned Colletti, Kim Ng, Roy Smith or Bill LaJoie) a PR guy (either myself or Joe Jareck) and about 15 people who work on our radio and television broadcasts behind the scenes.
One benefit of traveling with the team is that the bus pulls up on the tarmac and we fortunately, we don’t have to deal with airports at all. There’s security at the bottom of the stairs to the plane and they do go through very strict measures, as Scott has said that 9/11 has had an effect on chartered flights, too.
I hope that answered some of your questions and that you can appreciate the jobs that some of the people in the organization get to do a little better than maybe you did before.