New Pirates Pitcher, Old Pirates Pitcher Have Awkward Run-In
Jason Grilli and Ernesto Frieri had just swapped teams. You won’t believe what happened next.
Photo courtesy of the Pittsburgh Pirates
The Pirates said goodbye to All-Star closer and all-around good guy Jason Grilli last week. He was shipped to the Anaheim Angeles in exchange for fellow closer Ernesto Frieri. On his way to Pittsburgh on Saturday, Frieri had a layover at Chicago's O'Hare Airport. He decided to go to the bathroom to wash his face when he bumped into a man with flowing brown hair and a magnificent beard.
Frieri told MLB.com’s Tom Singer:
“First thing, I look at this guy washing his hands next to me, and I thought, ‘I think I know this guy.’ I looked again, and he’s looking at me and goes, ‘Really? Well, I guess this is when we get to meet each other.’”
Improbably, Grilli and Frieri had bumped into one another in one of O’Hare’s 100-plus bathrooms. While switching coasts and leagues isn’t an easy transition, Grilli had some encouraging words for Frieri.
“I just said, ‘Wish you luck over there, lot of good people, you’ve got a lot of good friends; make the most of it,’” Grilli said. “For me, it was difficult leaving good friends. That’s always the hard part, and it sounded like that’s what it was for him.”
Best of luck to Grilli in California. You can follow him on Twitter @GrillCheese49.