DENVER - Each afternoon, Yorvit Torrealba will sit by his locker and wait for his cell phone to ring, anxiously anticipating the voice on the other end grilling him with questions.
How did you do last night? What pitches did you hit? Did you call a good game?
Just hearing the sound of his 12-year-old son’s voice is the best part of the day for the Colorado catcher whose resurgence this season coincided with the Rockies’ return to the postseason.
Just knowing that his son is secure and attending school back in Miami puts Torrealba at ease.
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Torrealba, who played 42 games for the Mariners in 2005, used to take a conversation with his boy, Yorvit Eduardo, for granted.
This spring, Torrealba’s son, brother-in-law and another relative were snatched by kidnappers in his native Venezuela, wanting a ransom of $500,000.
Torrealba left the team June 2 to join his wife in Venezuela, listening surreptitiously as she negotiated with the kidnappers.
A day later, the abductors left them along a highway outside Caracas. They were rescued and Torrealba quickly moved his family to the United States.
The kidnappers haven’t been apprehended, no breaks have been made in the case he said.
That’s one of the reasons he moved his wife and son first to Colorado for the summer, then to Miami for the school year.
“Look, there are bad things out there. But you can’t go into your life worrying about that. It’s only going to make it worse,” he said. “I try to be positive for my family.”
These days when his son calls, Torrealba can’t help but beam. The questions his son comes up with always intrigue him.
When Torrealba’s two-run homer sparked Colorado to a 5-4 win over Philadelphia in Game 2 on Thursday, his son wanted every detail about his dad’s first long ball since May 6.
“He’s like, ‘You were due because it’s been so long since you hit one,’ ” Torrealba said, laughing. “Don’t get me wrong, I was talking to him when he was in Venezuela, too. But it just wasn’t as often.”
Torrealba won’t have to talk to his son by phone after Game 3 tonight. The family is flying in for the game.
When Torrealba took time off to be with his family after the kidnapping, he was hitting .230. He quickly turned it around after his return, finishing the season at .291, which resulted in happy phone calls with his son.
“He feels he can call me every second, every minute,” Torrealba said. “That’s what he’s been doing. I love it. It’s great. Our relationship is now closer than it was before ... I’m always going to have time for him.”