A Game With Jerry
Monday, August 1, 2011
Jerry Reinsdorf on Being a Team Owner and the Brooklyn Dodgers
Earlier today, White Sox Chairman Jerry Reinsdorf and MLB Executive VP of Business Tim Brosnan met with White Sox sponsors and took part in a Q&A session with Comcast Sports Net Chicago’s Dave Kaplan.
Among the funnier moments …
Reinsdorf said that to be a Major League Baseball owner, you needed to “enjoy the game and love the competition.”
Kaplan asked what it was like to be the owner of the Chicago Bulls and White Sox and have to watch games on TV. Reinsdorf explained that he much preferred watching games with people, that when the teams were on the road, he often ended up watching alone at his home, adding that his wife “doesn’t watch sports.”
“When we are winning, I’m usually smoking a cigar,” Reinsdorf explained. “But sitting at home and watching a team lose is a miserable, miserable experience. I usually text Gar (Forman) or Kenny (Williams) to drive them nuts because I don’t want to be nuts all by myself.”
Reinsdorf recalled his most vivid baseball memory being a sad one when Bobby Thomson hit the “Shot Heard Round the World” as the New York Giants beat Reinsdorf’s beloved Brooklyn Dodgers in a 1951 playoff. But his favorite memory was being at Brooklyn’s Ebbetts Field for Jackie Robinson’s debut in 1947.
“I was too young to fully realize how significant that moment was,” he said, “but you could feel the buzz. There aren’t many people still around who can say they were there that day.”
As a Flatbush native, it was only natural that shortstop Pee-Wee Reese remains Reinsdorf’s favorite all-time player, although he listed Jim Thome and Harold Baines as contemporary players he loved.
Reinsdorf pointed out how Reese — a Louisville native and just in his mid 20s in 1947 — took a stance within the Dodgers clubhouse and throughout baseball by supporting Robinson as his teammate.
“I always respected him for that,” Reinsdorf said. “He was my favorite and will always be my favorite.”