Late Friday night, the long wait for Ron Roenicke to come into the media interview room in Miller Park was unusual – even after his Milwaukee Brewers had blown a 6-0 lead in a heartbreaking loss to the St. Louis Cardinals.
Immediately upon entering the room however, you could tell the manager’s heart was indeed, broken. I’ve been covering high school, college and professional sports for over a decade now, and his face – the pain and emotion in his eyes – was one I had only seen, and felt, a few times before.
Others in the media room felt it, too, but it couldn’t be spoken.
Saturday afternoon, Roenicke confirmed it to the gathered media prior to the game.
#Brewers SS Jean Segura has left the team to travel to the Dominican Republic. His 9-month-old son passed away yesterday. — Adam McCalvy (@AdamMcCalvy) July 12, 2014
Then, Carlos Gomez – a father of two – spoke for the clubhouse.
All-star CF @C_Gomez27 served as spokesman for @Brewers players. "This broke my heart," he said. — Drew Olson (@DrewOlsonMKE) July 12, 2014
Segura left Milwaukee immediately to return to his home in the Dominican Republic and was placed on the bereavement list.
The @Brewers have no timetable for Segura’s return. "If it's my kid, probably, I’m going to stay home. I’m not coming back," Gomez said. — Drew Olson (@DrewOlsonMKE) July 12, 2014
And it’s impossible to know, should Segura return this year, what kind of impact it will have on the 24-year-old.
Roenicke on Segura: "These things are different with everybody and every player. Hey, face it: some people never get over it." — Drew Olson (@DrewOlsonMKE) July 12, 2014
We’re all human. We all have felt loss, personally and professionally. Brewers beat man Tom Haudricourt summed it up best, I think:
#Bewers manager Ron Roenicke said all he could. Emotional Carlos Gomez bravely acted as club spokesman. Handled as well as could be handled. — Tom Haudricourt (@Haudricourt) July 12, 2014
Jim Owczarski is an award-winning sports journalist and comes to Milwaukee by way of the Chicago Sun-Times Media Network.
A three-year Wisconsin resident who has considered Milwaukee a second home for the better part of seven years, he brings to the market experience covering nearly all major and college sports.
To this point in his career, he has been awarded six national Associated Press Sports Editors awards for investigative reporting, feature writing, breaking news and projects. He is also a four-time nominee for the prestigious Peter J. Lisagor Awards for Exemplary Journalism, presented by the Chicago Headline Club, and is a two-time winner for Best Sports Story. He has also won numerous other Illinois Press Association, Illinois Associated Press and Northern Illinois Newspaper Association awards.
Jim's career started in earnest as a North Central College (Naperville, Ill.) senior in 2002 when he received a Richter Fellowship to cover the Chicago White Sox in spring training. He was hired by the Naperville Sun in 2003 and moved on to the Aurora Beacon News in 2007 before joining OnMilwaukee.com.
In that time, he has covered the events, news and personalities that make up the PGA Tour, LPGA Tour, Major League Baseball, the National Football League, the National Hockey League, NCAA football, baseball and men's and women's basketball as well as boxing, mixed martial arts and various U.S. Olympic teams.
Golf aficionados who venture into Illinois have also read Jim in GOLF Chicago Magazine as well as the Chicago District Golfer and Illinois Golfer magazines.