And away we go

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This is the start of what I hope will be long-running relationship with fans at MLB.com. I’m looking forward to passing along to you on a weekly basis my thoughts and ideas, insights into the game, my take on events of the day, whatever is relevant. I think it’s important to make a connection with fans and keep it, because that relationship is vital to the health of the game we all love.

I feel blessed to be in a position to represent a great game and a great organization. That’s why I’ll often use “we” in the blog, since I’ll be speaking in many respects for teammates, hoping to promote our game, get more people involved.

To get this going, we’d like to start with inviting you to help us create a name, a title, for this blog. We’re asking for suggestions in the comments bar at the bottom of the blog. This is going to be an interactive process, so we might as well get it moving in that direction right away.

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I am thrilled to be wearing an Angels uniform, playing in a great environment with a first-class organization. My first year in Anaheim had some great moments with 100 wins, most in the Majors, even if it didn’t end the way we all wanted. This season we’ll try to deliver six winning months again along with a happier ending in October. I am convinced we have the talent and the drive to get it done. Now it’s just a matter of going out and doing it.

Before we get into that, though, I’d like to talk a little bit about one of my passions off the field: getting young people out of their houses and outside, using their imaginations and creativity the way I did as a kid growing up in Pine Bluff, Arkansas, in some pretty rough circumstances.

I was always outside, using my athletic ability in some way in our neighborhoods. If I wasn’t playing catch with a baseball or football, I was riding a bike five miles to another neighborhood, then riding it back. I like to say I got my speed running from a dog, and I got my jumping ability leaping over a fence to get away from a dog. My throwing ability came from trying to hit trees with rocks. We were always outside competing in some way. It concerns me now that so few kids are doing that. Too many of our parks are empty, quiet. 

With the technology we have today, too many kids are spending too much time playing video games, watching TV. It’s a fast-food culture, and it’s not good for our kids’ health. They need to be outside, developing their minds and their bodies in healthy ways. When I was a kid and wanted to be like Tony Dorsett or Andre Dawson or Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, I’d be doing it on a sandlot or a playground. Now kids are doing it with video games, and it’s just not the same. We have all these kids who are obese, and it’s a function of society, of spending all this time sitting in their houses.

That’s why it’s been so important to me with the Torii Hunter Project to work with kids, to build Little League fields, get kids outside playing games. It might not get a kid to the Major Leagues or the NBA or NFL, but it’s going to make them healthier and more productive in their lives. Even my own kids try to stay inside, but I’ll close the door and lock it. I tell them to go outside and play a game, any game. Invent one if you have to, but do something. I don’t want my kids inside the house all day.

Well, that’s a start. We’ve got a lot of ground to cover in the weeks ahead, and I’m looking forward to hearing from you.

So, when you get a minute, use your imagination — it’s one of your best resources — and help us come up with a name for this blog.

I’ll check in next week, and hopefully by then we’ll have a title that we think represents what we’re trying to do here.

Stay active, and stay positive.

My best, Torii

48 Comments

Welcome to MLBlogs, Torii! Saw you on MLB Network the other day and you were jokin’ around and all giggly… love it. I enjoy seeing players who are REAL. Keep up the great work out west.
–Jeff
http://redstatebluestate.mlblogs.com/

We’re glad you’re back here, Torii. Let me know how we can help in any further way as this builds. Best,

Mark/MLB.com
http://mlblogs.mlblogs.com
http://www.twitter.com/mlblogs

Hey, Torii…great to see you on here, and looking forward to reading more!

OK, blog name…maybe this is goofy and obvious, but I’ve got one: “The ii’s Have It.” :)

Chris

http://bird-brained.mlblogs.com

“Torii Hunter’s Hangout”
“Hunter and his Halos”
“Huntin’ With Hunter”
“Talkin’ With Torii”
“Torii Time”

-Bobby
http://metsmainman.mlblogs.com

Hi Torii. Great to see that you’re going to be a part of the MLBlog community once again.

As for a blog title, taking the lead from the Tom Clancy book/film, what about something along the lines of ‘The Hunt(er) for Red October’.

–Matt
http://baseballgb.mlblogs.com/

How about “Torii’s Story”?

Good luck in L.A. this year. Even though I watch mostly National League baseball, I always enjoy seeing your Web Gems on “Baseball Tonight.”

http://bricksandivy.mlblogs.com

Hmm… well, “Angel in the Outfield” is a possibility.

I like “Torii’s Story,” too. Good call, Jason.

http://houston.mlblogs.com

A good title would be..hmmmmmmmm,

Torii’s Daily Buzzz
Lights Out Chat
Hunter’s NewsWire
Lets Chat Pepper

Those are some that I can think of ..Hopefully they’ll spark something. Anyhow, I agree with what you are talking about Torii. Majority of our loca cities leave parks and open spaces on the bottom of the list. A couple of blocks away from my house is a park with two baseball diamonds. These diamons are big enough for teenagers to play but the fields are covered with wholes, broken bottles and are the hanging areas for troublemakers.

I see the potential in the fields but the city that I live in does not take advantage of how these two ball fields can bring kids into the park and away from their television.

See you in Anaheim and you always make baseball fun to watch.

Hi Torii, we’re headed to Spring Training next week. See you there!

How about “ii’s on MLB” for your blog.

Marty and Carol

You strike me as a straight forward person, who is also centered and plays center, so here’s my stab at the name:
Upfront and Centered with Torii Hunter

I agree it’s important for kids to play sports. I have no real athletic talent, but because I played sports as a kid, I can enjoy a pickup softball, basketball or volleyball game as an adult. Thanks for the work you are doing! And, welcome back!
-Kathy
http://redbirdchatter.mlblogs.com

Hey Mr. Torii Hunter, I have a good title for your new blog:

Centerfield with Torii Hunter. Best wishes good luck this year

Hey man,

Have a good season and remember to see the ball deep. =D

The Torii Truth/s.

“Hunting with Torii”

Go easy on the Tribe’s pitching! If i remember correctly you hit a walk off grand-slam last year against us off of Joe Borowski in LA.
Best of luck to you.
http://clevelandbaseball.mlblogs.com/

Good luck this season, Mr. Hunter!
http://theburghblues.mlblogs.com/

Hey Torii

Thanks for the insight, I completely agree with all your comments regarding children in our modern era. My friends and I used to compete back in elementary school (NYC). We used to take a rubber ball and see who can bounce it off the 5 story school building the highest. I “roofed” it many times and was only in second grade! Now I play NCAA baseball (I won’t say for which college) as a center fielder. Maybe one day we’ll be teamates.

Anyway, here is a suggestion…
“Baseblog with Hunter”

I think that “Tune in to Torii” would be kind of catchy.

“Torii’s got no worries” . . .

Torii, what’s up man . . . lovin that your here!!!! haha. . . the way you relate to fans on and off the field is what makes you someone that all of us look up to man, keep it up man and i hope you and the rally monkey can hang out in Huntington Beach and enjoy a beer with me one of these days!!! Take care man . . .

What about “Hunting for a Ring” or “Hunting with the Halos”

Bob, http://bostonsports.mlblogs.com/

Mr. Hunter,
Keep up the great work on and off the field. You are also a great writer. As far as the title……..”Runnin’ with Hunter”
or…”Running with the Angel Hunter”

You are always outside and a speed demon so i thought the title was appropriate. Have a great season!

Visit the link below when you get a chance to see pictures of your baseball idols.

http://baseballintheattic.mlblogs.com/

hey torii, great blog and you’re right, young people and even young adults today need to get out and enjoy and experience life more. Everybody needs to have their own personal experiences and stories to tell their friends and family and kids and you can’t do it by just sitting around the house playing video games all day. I think it’s hard for someone to be happy and healthy living that kind of life.

Anyway, the team looks great so far in spring training, the pitching injuries are unfortunate but I know you guys will work through it and find ways to win. That’s what the Angels do! The young kids are looking great, as well. I know they’re in good hands with you and the other vets helping them along and teaching them how to play the game the right way. I know it’s going to be a great season!

Here’s a couple good names for your blog, that I hope you’ll consider:

Everyday We’re Hustlin’
Putting the Love Back In Gold Glove

hey torii, great blog and you’re right, young people and even young adults today need to get out and enjoy and experience life more. Everybody needs to have their own personal experiences and stories to tell their friends and family and kids and you can’t do it by just sitting around the house playing video games all day. I think it’s hard for someone to be happy and healthy living that kind of life.

Anyway, the team looks great so far in spring training, the pitching injuries are unfortunate but I know you guys will work through it and find ways to win. That’s what the Angels do! The young kids are looking great, as well. I know they’re in good hands with you and the other vets helping them along and teaching them how to play the game the right way. I know it’s going to be a great season!

Here’s a couple good names for your blog, that I hope you’ll consider

“Everyday We’re Hustlin'”
“Putting the Love Back In Gold Glove”

Hey Torii. Thanks for doing this.
How about…

“Robbing at Will” (for your amazing defensive ability)

—Christopher (Fullerton, CA)

Hay Torii,
How about just Torii’s Blog!
I’m really glad you’ll be blogging here. I like reading the west coast baseball news from the players, especially the Angels.

Noni

Hi Tori

How about “We are all Angels”

This could capture the spirit of unity between the team and the fans.

J

Hey Torii, great blog. I agree that kids are not out nowhere near as much as they used to be. I can remember playing outside in all weather, trying to immitate my childhood heroes – guys like Mike Piazza, Reggie Miller and George Best. Keep up the good work, Torii.I love Matt’s idea of The Hunt(er) for Red October.
Here are a few others -“Angels wear red: Giving back to the community””Living the dream: From the sandlot to the show”
“Hunting for glory: Keeping an ii on the prize”
“Showing love for the game, one play at a time”
Ashhttp://http:ashleymarshall.mlblogs.com

Hey Torii,
How do you feel about,
“Torii Going for the Glory”
“An Angel in the Outfield”
or
“The Glory with Torii”
“Going for a Red October”
“A Halo in Center”

Whichever title you choose, I’m sure it will be great.
The Manoman
http://manoman.mlblogs.com

Hey Torii
How about

LA’s Angels
or Gold Glove of LA

Best of Luck to ya

Johnny
http://13mlb.mlblogs.com/

Hi Torii !!!
What a great role model you are for the youth. It is so nice to hear/read all the good that you are doing. Thanks for addressing some of the problems with the youth. Many of the kids just want to play video games after school. I agree that we need to get them outside more. I am a teacher who is trying to encourage students to use their imaginations and creativity. We are doing a class project with flat stanley. Have you ever heard of him? We would love to send him to you. He has already visited our home sport teams. He really isn’t a lot of trouble, and the students would really love it. They have work really hard on the project. I am a huge baseball fan and have incorporated many baseball lessons into my classroom. You seem like such a great ballplayer, but most importantly a wonderful person. Baseball needs more players like you. If it’s ok to send you our flat stanley or if you have any questions please let me know. I hope God grants you many more blessings….As for the title…I like Torii’s Tales…
All the Best, Cathy

************************************************
I want to give you my email for an answer to flat stanley, but I DO NOT WANT it to appear on your web site…thanks so mcuh for your consideration…please give me an address of where I could send flat stanley to you……………………………….marmolc@yahoo.com

Hey Tori! We are glad to have you in So Cal! I think this is about the best title you can find!
“IN THE HUNT”
It goes with being “In The Hunt” for the Playoffs and World Series and can also be seen as just being “In The Hunt” for everything you do at life if you just apply yourself and believe that you can do it!
Good Luck This Year and during BP look in the Right Field corner for me!!
John
http://ballhawk.mlblogs.com

“The Halo Connection”

This is going to be an awesome season, looking forward to some tighter competition in the AL West!

-Drew

Hey Mr. Hunter….. Its gonna be great to have you on the blogs. I was thinking last night and came up with something that looks like its already been posted, but to change it up a little:

“Torii’s Storiis”

See you in Cleveland, Torii!
Sarah [[ http://alwaysthejake.mlblogs.com ]]

As a mom – I love the idea that you are focused on the idea of getting the kids outside and doing physical/fun/exciting things!

Julia
http://werbiefitz.mlblogs.com/

I am a HUGE Angel fan. I’m also a Brewer fan. When you were withe the Twins, did you like playing against the brewers and how was it like playing with Joe “side ‘burn’ you) Mauer
Cheeky

http://cheeky.mlblogs.com

Hey Torii,
Ur my Favorite Player on the Angels! Best of luck this season. Everyone: Check out my blog at http://adriangonzalez23.mlblogs.com/
Thanks!

My official suggestion is:

“Torii’s Take”

Thanks for bringing so much fun and laughter to the game Torii. You are a true joy to watch. Great sense of humor and a great person to have in the game. Love the fact that you are my team’s centerfielder too.

Blog name: I heard a radio interview with you last year after a win vs. Boston, and you said something like, “it’s nice to stick it up their cigarette butts”, except with one word less. Awesome – I hate the freakin’ Sox! I told my friend about this, and he said he heard an interview with you about why you don’t use certain equipment on the field, from which I suggest this name for your blog: Too Much Junk

Hey, Torii! Welcome back! It’s always exciting to get back to baseball!

Regarding kids, I disagree just a little bit… I think the important thing is to get kids inventing their own games. Indoor or outdoor doesn’t matter so much. When I started writing my own computer games at the age of seven, it started me off on a completely different career path than yours… not that I didn’t play outside also, but if kids just want to play video games then try to find games that they can modify. I believe in using a child’s interests, not fighting them (when possible, anyway).

Coming from a big Twins fan who has cheered you on many a time:

“Front and CENTER”

http://zkonedog.mlblogs.com/

Torii, I have been an Angel fan since I was a kid. I’m 50 now. I am extatic that you are a member of the team. You are the model player who the fans want to see. Someone who “wants” to be here. In 2002 we had a lot og home grown players that had a real good chemestry and a never say die attitude. Thay as you well know, was the ultimate year. The “Rally Monkey” year. I see the same thing developing in the team this year. I know that you guys are getting healthy and that’s brings me to my suggestion for a title for your blog…..”Monkey Business”. thanks for all you bring on and off the field and I will see you at the ball park all year.

Ted from Norwalk

“HUNT FOR RED OCTOBER”

Torii–you’re the MAN. Thanks for all you do on and off the field. You make me proud to be an Angel Fan!!

– Bernadette

“Calling all Angels”

“Torrimundo”

“Angels in the Outfield”

“Outside the Diamond”

“Hunter on The Hunt”

You guys are solid this year and will win the division again. Let’s beat Boston!

Dear Mr. Hunter,
I remember when i first heard that you were going to be an angel. Being a fan of yours even as a Twin, i was so happy i didn’t know what to do! I don’t know if you know, but watching a player that gives his all while wearing an irresistable, contagious smile on his face is a beautiful thing! I also believe that the way you interact with people (esp. with the fans) is great, and i appreciate it not just as a fan but as a person, that you are taking extra steps to better the community and society in general. True role model-esque indeed!

As for the title of the blogs, it seems like people already thought of some killer cool names for you! I don’t know how they figured it out but some of them are really good, you should give some a try, see which ones you love best.

Speaking of best, ;) i say the angels can make another run for it! Maybe this time we’ll go a bit more further because the whole “winning the division and failing in the first round” thing is getting a bit uncomfortable don’t you think?

give all my love to the rest of the team
GO ANGELS!!!

Dear Torii,
Man last year was great having you in an Angels uniform. I look forward to making it to as many games as i can this season. I’ll be there for sure opening day. As for a name for your blog i was thinking of something along the lines of “Sittin’ down with Spidy” since your nickname is spider man after all. Thanks man and have a great season. GO ANGELS!!!

“MY HALO STORII”

Both K-Rod and Tex chose to play elsewhere. It’s good for the fans to hear how much you enjoy playing for our team. Some of my favorite childhood memories came from little league games, I’m probably not alone, It’s also great to hear how committed you are to our communities’ children. Thanks for sharing and I’m looking forward to more.

Excellent choice for a title, Torii! I look forward to hearing storiis all year long.
Aaron
http://mlbtribefan.mlblogs.com

Excellent choice for a title, Torii! I look forward to hearing storiis all year long.
Aaron
http://mlbtribefan.mlblogs.com

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