They Say You Can’t Go Home Again
By Kili Hood
They say you can’t go home again. But for one guy on the Sounds, that is simply not true. Sounds reliever Jeff Bennett has come home for the third time. That’s right, this is his third separate stint with his hometown team. Bennett grew up just outside Nashville, and has returned home as a member of the Sounds in ’03, ’05 and here again in 2010.
Some guys might say that playing in or near your hometown is tough, but not for Bennett. “It’s better, actually,” says Bennett, “your friends and family can come whenever, without having to make a long trip, and I get to sleep in my own bed at night. It’s great!”
Bennett still lives in the Nashville area year round, and that gives him the opportunity to spend quality time with his family. Bennett is grateful for the time he gets to spend with his wife and his two daughters, and is looking forward to the arrival of the newest member of the family. Bennett’s wife usually accompanies him on the road trips that don’t take him too far away from home.
Bennett, who has enjoyed a taste of the big leagues, is hoping that this go-round with the Sounds will land him up in Milwaukee at some point this season. “I was in Atlanta, and started to get things going, and broke my (non-pitching) hand, so it’s been frustrating,” explains Bennett. “I’m hoping to get back on track here and get a call up this season.”
Once Bennett’s career is through, and he hopes that’s not for a long time, he plans on staying right here in Nashville. “My wife and I have talked about it, and if I weren’t playing ball, I think I’d like to join the fire department,” explains Bennett. “Of course I’ve also considered coaching. I think most ballplayers would like to fall back on coaching, but we’ll just have to see.” For now though, Bennett plans on going out every appearance and giving his all, keeping his eye on the prize.
This homestand wasn’t too bad for the good guys, wrapping up with a 4-3 record. A crowd of over 9,000 got to enjoy a special fireworks show as the Sounds celebrated the Fourth of July a day early. The Sounds are currently in 2nd place in their division, just a step behind those pesky Memphis Redbirds. The Sounds are hoping to continue to fight to stay close to the top as they hit the road, despite losing a hot bat, as outfielder Trent Oeltjen was released by the team last week.
The upcoming road trip is a bit of an extended one, starting with four games versus the Oklahoma City RedHawks, followed by four against the Memphis Redbirds. Then most of the guys are getting a much needed three day break for the Triple-A All-Star Game, which is being played this year in Allentown, PA. The exception to that being shortstop Luis Cruz, who was selected as the Sounds representative on this year’s PCL team. The Sounds will then return to Greer Stadium for an eight game homestand against the Omaha Royals and Albuquerque Isotopes.