The daily grind of major-league baseball is tough enough, but players have lives off the field as well.
And just like everyone else, they have good days and bad days.
Chicago White Sox shortstop Tim Anderson had an awful day last week when his close friend, Branden Moss, was murdered in Alabama.
“He was more so a football guy and I was more so a basketball and baseball guy,” Anderson said Wednesday before the Sox’s game against the Minnesota Twins was rained out. “But we definitely had a very tight bond. He was very close to me, more as a brother.
“We’re talking seven-plus years of a great relationship. He’s my baby’s god dad and I’m his daughter’s god dad. It was that type of bond.”
Anderson posted a picture of himself and Moss on Twitter Sunday, saying: “Today has been one of the toughest day(s). I lost my friend/brother. This one is a really tough pill to swallow. Man I’m (going to) miss you brother.”
Anderson was not in the White Sox’s lineup Sunday at Baltimore, and he also had Monday’s day off to grieve.
“Anybody that’s ever participated in any sport or in your jobs, any jobs, there is a human element to everything that we do,” Sox manager Rick Renteria said. “Any time something personally affects you, that creates grief or causes you to pause, obviously, I think we all understand it. I think every human being on the face of the earth understands it.
“I think it’s just a matter of how we’re going to allow the individual to deal with that particular situation and then, you know, kind of just get through it. You never forget it. I think it’s just one of those things, it’s just life. Sometimes things happen and you just have to deal with it and you move on.”
Anderson was back in the lineup Tuesday night against Minnesota, and he was 1-for-4.
“That’s definitely really bothering me,” the 23-year-old Anderson said. “We had a bond. I know he’s in a better place, but I continue to play, have fun and do it for him. It was tough. Just to think about the last conversation and text we had was real tough.”
With a .210/.236/.521 hitting line through the first five-plus weeks of the season, Anderson is off to a tough start.
“This year has been one of the toughest years of my career, just from the things that are happening in my life,” Anderson said. “It’s something I’m controlling, not letting my off-the-field issues control what I do on the field. That’s something I’m still learning.
“All of this is new to me. I’m experiencing a lot. But I can continue to grow and mature and become a better person, and definitely become a better teammate and player.”