The Show Begins

June 26, 2005

On June 10 the Brewers called up second baseman Rickie Weeks, 22, their top draft pick in 2003. Weeks, who wrote about life at Triple A Nashville for SI PLAYERS (May 23) batted .320 in Nashville and hit .286 in 28 at bats with Milwaukee. He recalls the call-up.

We were in Des Moines, and after we won our game in 12 innings, we didn't get back to the hotel until 2 a.m. The next morning I was barely conscious when the phone rang at 11. It was my coach, Frank Kremblas. "Are you ready?" he asked. I said, "Ready for what?" He said, "To go to Milwaukee." I told my friend and roommate, Prince Fielder, that I was headed to the big leagues! [Kremblas] told me to fly to Philadelphia to join the Brewers there. I was shocked. I thought I would spend the summer in the minors and come up in September like last year.

I packed as fast as possible. My cellphone kept ringing--my dad, my brother, my roommate from Southern [University]. They had all heard that the Brewers had traded their second baseman, Junior Spivey, to Washington, and they wondered what that meant for me. I told them I was getting called up, and they were ecstatic.

I had to fly to Chicago to connect to Philly, and both flights were delayed a couple of hours because of thunderstorms. I'm a pretty relaxed guy, but my mind was racing. Fortunately I had my portable DVD player and watched Ice Cube's movie Are We There Yet? appropriate for my day. I finally got to my hotel in Philly at 2 a.m. I woke up around 11 and ordered a grilled chicken sandwich from room service. The best difference between the big leagues and minors is that you get your own hotel room.

After I ate, I phoned the Brewers' rookie shortstop, J.J. Hardy, and we took a cab to the ballpark, catching up on old times. On the ride over I got a call from Felipe Lopez, who I went to high school with in Florida and who's having a great year as a shortstop with the Reds. He told me to do what I'd been doing in the minors and I'll be fine. When I walked into the clubhouse, I wasn't too nervous--I saw guys I'd gotten to know in spring training. The first few days I talked to my teammates in Nashville a lot. I miss my old team, but right now there isn't a place I'd rather be.

COLOR PHOTODANNY TURNER COLOR PHOTOBRIAN KILLIAN/WIREIMAGE.COM COLOR PHOTOSPORTS ILLUSTRATED IMAGING

HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
OUT
HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
IN
Eagle (-2)
Birdie (-1)
Bogey (+1)
Double Bogey (+2)