The Waiting Game

March 12, 1995|By Buster Olney

Brian Sackinsky

What he would be doing if there were no strike: Sackinsky would be in camp, preparing for another year in the minor leagues. At Double-A Bowie last summer, Sackinsky went 11-7 with a 3.36 ERA, walking only 39 in 177 innings. He's likely headed to Triple-A Rochester this summer, if the strike ends or if the union allows its minor-leaguers to play.

Where he is instead: Up until three days ago, Sackinsky was in California with his fiancee; she is attending Stanford, and he was working out at his alma mater. But to save money, Sackinsky returned to his hometown of Library, Pa., to live with his parents.

How he's filling his time: Sackinsky worked out with the Stanford baseball team while on the West Coast. Now that he has returned home, he is practicing with his old high school team -- South Park High. "When I throw batting practice to them," Sackinsky said, "I don't go a full 100 percent. Basically, it's a way for me to get strength back in my arm." He has lifted weights regularly since December, when he finished a stint in the Arizona Fall League.

What he's doing when he's not working out: "I really like fishing, and I was just thinking the other day that if [the strike] doesn't get resolved, I'm going to be able to go trout fishing on Opening Day." By that, Sackinsky means the first day of the fishing season, not the baseball season. "I haven't done that since I was in high school," he said.

The last time he wasn't playing baseball in spring: "It's been a long time, since back in high school. Because of the weather, we wouldn't get started until late March or early April. It's kind of weird not playing."

How he's handling the wait: "If I can't go and play in the minors, I'll probably go and get a job. . . . probably go through a temporary agency. If I had known it was going to go on this long, I probably would've tried to get a job right away in California."

When he thinks the strike will end: "I hope soon. It doesn't look good. I couldn't even guess. I don't think we'll be able to start the season on time."

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