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Iannetta, Oberg spend rare off-day at home

Both Rockies are New England natives
@jessicacamerato
May 15, 2019

BOSTON -- The Rockies’ eight-game East Coast swing kicked off Monday with an off-day in Boston. To many, it was another day on the road. To Chris Iannetta and Scott Oberg, it was an opportunity to go back home. “I think that’s always exciting for players,” manager Bud Black said

BOSTON -- The Rockies’ eight-game East Coast swing kicked off Monday with an off-day in Boston. To many, it was another day on the road. To Chris Iannetta and Scott Oberg, it was an opportunity to go back home.

“I think that’s always exciting for players,” manager Bud Black said before Wednesday’s series finale. “They look forward to that.”

Iannetta grew up in Rhode Island and resides in Massachusetts. When the rare chance popped up during the season to stay at his own house and be with his family, he jumped on it. His two daughters, 8-year-old Ashlyn and 5-year-old Kylie, stayed home from school, and they spent the day enjoying special milestones.

“My oldest wanted to take the training wheels off, so we were running up and down the driveway trying to teach her,” Iannetta said. “She got it for, I’d say, 30-40 yards on her own a few times. It was a great off-day. It was cool. I was very thankful for that.”

Iannetta plans to stay with his family when the Rockies are off again on Thursday before they face the Phillies in Philadelphia on Friday.

“It’s awesome,” Iannetta said. “People don’t realize how much you sacrifice and how much time you are away and how much you really have to put into this game in order to be successful or play for a long period of time. Any time you get chances to be with the kids during the season, it’s always fun.”

Oberg also spent the off-day with children. He went with his parents to his hometown of Tewksbury, Mass., to watch the high school baseball team play. Then, he stopped by the Little League field where he learned how to play ball and met with the players.

“I would drag my dad down to the [Little League] field when there’d be nobody there,” Oberg said. “We’d basically practice on our own on the field itself. A lot of those moments started coming back. Those are the times that meant more to me, because it was just my father, my brother and I, and we were just having fun.”

Oberg had not been back to his childhood baseball field since he made his Major League debut in April 2015. Returning as a big league pitcher had a special meaning to him.

“I saw myself in all these kids,” Oberg said. “At that age, I wanted nothing more than to ... either play for the Red Sox or against them. So this means a lot, definitely going back to that early childhood, big-pipe dreams.”

Iannetta and Oberg had support in the stands when the Rockies staged an extra-innings comeback against the Red Sox on Tuesday. Oberg pitched one inning, while Iannetta powered a 367-foot double to the Green Monster in left field and scored a run.

“There’s a sense of home when a guy comes back to their area,” Black said. “I think it’s cool, and I think that their people can share that big league experience. I think that’s a great thing.”

Jessica Camerato is a reporter/editor for MLB.com based in Boston. Follow her on Twitter @jessicacamerato.