GLENDALE, Arizona -- Todd Frazier has yet to play a regular season game for the White Sox, but the team’s new third baseman already feels like he’s home.
I mean, really home.
If it was up to him, Frazier says he’d play for the White Sox for the rest of his career.
“Just talking to the guys, talking to Rick (Hahn), Robin (Ventura), the atmosphere. It’s just a different vibe,” Frazier said. “I can just tell it’s going to be a good fit for me.”
So if Rick Hahn came to you and offered a lifetime contract, you’d sign it?
“Sure. Most definitely.”
Frazier might have grown up in New Jersey, but he relates to the backseat sentiment of many White Sox fans who live in the shadow of the more popular Cubs.
In fact, he thrives on it.
“I went to a high school where we were the low high school,” Frazier explained. “There are three Toms River High Schools and we were always the one they put aside, and we’d come out and bring out the broomsticks and take care of business. I like that a lot.”
After facing the White Sox twice during spring training, San Francisco Giants (and former White Sox) pitcher Jake Peavy delivered a message to Chicago after Sunday’s game, saying, “Don’t sleep on that South Side team.”
“We want to be those guys that nobody talks about. and the next thing you know - boom, here we come. I think we have that team,” Frazier said. “We have to prove ourselves, of course. The Chicago Cubs the last couple years I’ve been playing against them every two to three weeks. I know them really well. They’ve been playing great. They have a good caliber of guys coming up. Good for them, but don’t sleep on us, and we take that seriously. We’re going to work our tails off and we’re gonna wake some people up and hopefully when that rivalry (with the Cubs) comes around, it’s meaningful this year.”
As you can probably tell, Frazier is a straight-talking quote machine.
He’s also got the bat and glove to back it up.
His 35 home runs last year with the Reds would have led the White Sox. It was 11 more than all White Sox third basemen hit the last two seasons combined.
No wonder Hahn traded away three of their top prospects to get him.
But as you’ll find with Frazier, he’s not just thinking about himself when he takes the field. And he’s not just thinking about his teammates.
Be on the lookout when you come to a game, because he might be thinking and playing for you.
“Why not go out there everyday and say to a kid in the stands, maybe that’s his first time watching a game. Why not perform for him? Give him something to remember,” he said.
Reds fans will always remember Frazier’s walk-up songs in Cincinnati. Growing up an hour south of Frank Sinatra’s hometown of Hoboken, New Jersey, Frazier picked Sinatra’s “Fly Me to the Moon” and “Come Fly with Me” to be belted over the loudspeakers whenever he came to the plate.
He still hasn’t finalized which song or songs he’ll use at U.S. Cellular Field.
“I was going back and forth," he said. "I’ll start listening to music and I’ll figure it out. It’s coming along.”
You mean you’re not going to use “My Kind of Town (Chicago is)?” It seems like a perfect fit.
“I’m not sure. I’m up in the air right now.”
It would probably be a big hit.
“I think it would, too. It’s up there on the list.”
Will it be something Sinatra?
Come to think of it, “Summer Wind” wouldn’t be bad when the weather heats up.
If Frazier is on a hot streak, he can deliver a message to the opposition with “I’ve Got You Under My Skin.”
But come to think of it, if there’s one Frank Sinatra song that White Sox fans have been waiting for and can really get behind, it’s this:
“The Best is Yet to Come.”