It was a day when the score didn’t matter. A day where legends from the Chicago Cubs and Chicago White Sox came together, as friends. The camaraderie was undeniable. The bond these guys share with each other – and, on this day, shared with all the fans – was special to see. That’s exactly how the Pogofsky family wanted it; exactly how Larry Pogofsky would have wanted it.
Larry Alan Pogofsky was honored on this day, in a truly incredible way. I never had the privilege to meet Larry but there is no doubt he was a mighty special man who brought people together. A day like this doesn’t happen for just anyone. His two sons, Brad and Benjy, along with his lovely daughter, Lisa, his beautiful wife, Lynda, and all their families and friends put their heart and soul into planning this day. And boy, did it show.
The day began on the field with a kids clinic coordinated by the Bulls Sox Academy. The players were assigned to various skills stations where they took turns meeting the kids, helping them with their baseball skills, signing autographs and having a great time. All the players were so engaged and it honestly looked like, at times, they were having as much, maybe even a little more, fun as the kids.
After the kids clinic, which lasted about 1 1/2 hours, the players took some time to meet and say ‘hello’ to the fans. Every player went out of their way to shake hands, take pictures, and sign autographs. The players looked like they enjoyed every minute of it.
Once the game started, the fans got the chance to watch their heroes play a friendly game of softball. There were several inside the park home runs, a few great catches, a few funny misses, lots of cheering and a whole bunch of laughter. The highlight of the day for me was when Billy Williams came up to bat and hit a sharp line drive past a diving second baseman for a single. Ok, maybe I’m exaggerating a little but you get the picture, right?
After the game the players mixed and mingled with the fans at the VIP BBQ event. There was loads of food and lots of opportunities for the players and fans to meet, say ‘hi’, share stories, take more pictures and spend time together. It was a unique and rare experience for lots of fans. Chicago Cubs fan Husnaa Vhora shared her experience on Twitter.
— Hus (@HusnaaVhora) September 11, 2016
It was that kind of day for all the fans in attendance. Just the way that the Pogosky family wanted it to be, the same way they grew up around all the players and coaches. Fans getting this type of access to superstars, their heroes, doesn’t happen often. Seeing Cubs and White Sox fans having so much fun and laughs together doesn’t happen often either.
When the day started, as we were leaving Chicago to head out to Schaumburg Boomers stadium, the weather was nasty. Dark clouds were all around, it was chilly and raining. I thought they may have to cancel the game. As we drove, getting beyond the city traffic, past the airport and near the stadium, blue sky appeared, like magic. I couldn’t help but think that maybe Larry was looking down, brightening the skies.
This was a special day. A day that truly honored a special man.
Oh, and in case you were wondering, the White Sox won 13-11. But who’s counting?