WEDNESDAY, MARCH 27, 2013 – 9:27 PM
Scott Lacefield (Twitter: @ScottLacefield)
If you haven’t heard already, the Texas Tech baseball team is coming off four games in five days road trip that consisted of a three-game series in West Virginia and a midweek game at New Mexico State on Monday.
The kicker is the final game. Tech woke up in Charleston, W. Va., on Monday morning and began its journey to Atlanta, El Paso and then Las Cruces and then back to Lubbock. That’s right – three time zones in one day, with a nine-inning baseball game at the end of flights from West Virginia to Georgia to Texas and then a bus trip back to Lubbock.
Sounds like quite the day right, well, let me break it down for you minute by minute, flight by flight and bus trip by bus trip.The entire trip took 26 hours and 41 minutes to travel 2,320 miles… Yes, in one day. Let me take you on our journey.
Stay with me now.
MONDAY, MARCH 25
- 4:30 a.m. ET (Charleston, W. Va.):
Red Raiders, coaches, staff and radio crew wake up at the Marriot in Charleston on Monday morning getting ready to start the day.
- 5:08 a.m. ET (Charleston, W. Va.):
Tech charter bus leaves the hotel and heads to the airport.
- 5:21 a.m. ET (Charleston, W. Va.):
Tech arrives at the airport in plenty of time for its 7 a.m. flight to Atlanta, Ga., where the team will then wait for its next flight. While at the airport in Charleston a few players caught some extra shut eye as others grabbed some breakfast.
- 7:02 a.m. ET (Charleston, W. Va.):
The Red Raiders’ flight to Atlanta, Ga., takes off from the run way.
- 8:04 a.m. ET (Atlanta, Ga.):
Tech’s quick one hour and two minute flight has landed as the team now has a little bit of time before its next flight which will take them to El Paso. Players who didn’t get something to eat earlier are in the Atlanta airport looking for something to eat before the next flight.
-11:33 a.m. ET (Atlanta, Ga.):
Wheels up for Tech’s second flight of the day – next stop the Mountain Time zone of El Paso, Texas.
12:50 p.m. MT (El Paso, Texas):
The time might not look like it had changed much, that’s because three hours and 17 minutes later looks quite a bit different when you jump back two time zones as Tech landed in El Paso at 12:50 p.m. in the great state of Texas. Tech players, coaches and staff rounded up bags and located its charter bus that would take them on the rest of its trip.
1:45 p.m. MT (El Paso, Texas):
The Red Raiders had a little bit of time to kill – but also some lunch to grab – as the team headed over to Fuddruckers in El Paso to get something to eat before batting practice and arriving in Las Cruces.
2:56 p.m. MT (El Paso, Texas):
After a quick lunch, the Red Raiders headed towards Las Cruces.
3:40 p.m. MT (Las Cruces, N.M.):
Tech reached its final destination before game time as the team went directly to the football stadium at New Mexico State and changed into their uniforms and batting practice gear as game time was only 2 hours and 20 minutes away. The short bus trip from El Paso to Las Cruces took just 44 mintues.
6:06 p.m. MT (Las Cruces, N.M.):
After batting practice and infield/outfield the Red Raiders were set for game time as first pitch from Trey Higginbotham was delivered at 6:06 p.m. local time in Las Cruces at Presley Askew Field.
9:38 p.m. MT (Las Cruces, N.M.):
After a three hour and 32 minute game, the Red Raiders lost 7-6 as the Aggies scored three runs in the eighth and ninth innings to come back from a 6-4 deficit. Tech had two players who finished with three base this (Brennan Moore, Elliot Richoux) in the loss.
10:21 p.m. MT (Las Cruces, N.M.):
Players and coaches showered and changed and the radio crew packed up their gear as the trip back to Lubbock was about to begin. The bus driver had said to plan on at least six hours and 15 minutes. The team grabbed something quick to eat at McDonald’s and we were all set to make the final leg of the trip back home to Lubbock.
TUESDAY, MARCH 26
6:11 a.m. CT (Lubbock, Texas):
Well, the bus driver was close, but at this point who was counting as the bus ride from Las Cruces to Lubbock took around six hours and 50 minutes with one stop for sure (might have been more, who knows) to pick up a fresh bus driver – one who ended up bringing us back to the clubhouse. Some players stayed up and studied, some players got some rest and others were watching movies on laptops or doing whatever else you can do on a six-plus hour bus ride on a day that started a full day ago.
As we say at the end of a baseball game, TIME OF GAME… well for this I’ll say, TIME OF DAY: 26 hours and 41 minutes.
This didn’t even include talking about the Red Raiders who jumped on a bus at 6 a.m. in Lubbock that joined the team in El Paso as several Tech pitchers who wouldn’t see action then flew back to Lubbock. What a day, what a trip.
With all of this being said, you can’t even start to explain the unbelievable job Texas Tech baseball director of operations Joseph Hughes did with all of the travel planning, arrangements and execution of getting the Red Raiders from A-to-B… I mean to even think about this much less plan this and have everything work out and happen is just proof of the job Joe does on a day-to-day basis. The Red Raiders have the very best director of operations in the country, and this trip shows just part of the reason why.
As the kids say, “big props” go to Joe Hughes!
Thankfully the Red Raiders have a couple days off – well at least without travel – before taking on the TCU Horned Frogs in their Big 12 home opening series which takes place March 29-31 at Dan Law Field at Rip Griffin Park.