At least count, about 50 people e-mailed during the last week asking me to pass along their good wishes to the Chamberlain family. Many others expressed similar thoughts on the blog.
Obviously I didn’t want to disturb Joba while he was attending to his father. But after the game tonight, I had a chance to tell him about it.
He seemed genuinely touched.
“Do me a favor and tell those people I said thanks,” he said. “It really means a lot to me that people care about my father. I know a lot of prayers were sent our way and I appreciate it. Man, it was great how the guys on the team were, the fans, everybody, really. I love them all. A buddy of mine back home said Red Sox fans were on a site saying they were pulling for my dad. It’s great that people are like that.”
Joba said his dad should be home by Tuesday and at a game sometime soon. Mr. Chamberlain has had a series of health issues in his life and hopefully he’ll get a chance to see his son play in the big leagues for a good long time.
I was one of the first reporters to interview Mr. Chamberlain last year and after I hung up, he called me back a few minutes later and gave me his address because he wanted to see the story. I sent it out and when I had a chance to meet him in person a few weeks later, he shook my hand.
“You sent me that newspaper,” he said. “It’s in the scrapbook. I liked it.”
Not to get too corny on you, but that’s why I wanted to do this for a living. It’s great how Mr. Chamberlain has opened up and shared his story with so many people. It’s one of the reasons Joba is so popular with the fans.
Well, that and the 100-mph heater. That doesn’t hurt.