"No, they're for you," Carlos said. "You give us so much. I wanted to give you something of mine. Besides, I have an extra glove at home."
Benes smiled warmly and shook the boy's hand. And with that, the thought of pulling on a Padre uniform again didn't seem so bad.
Indeed, Benes insists that he's once again looking forward to pitching every fifth day, beginning with San Diego's season opener, April 4, against the Braves at Jack Murphy Stadium. "I'm much better equipped to handle things this year," he says. "It will be a lot easier. I'm more motivated than I have ever been in my career."
Perhaps Benes is simply learning what it takes to survive. After all, he has been practicing.