Jennie Finch’s Blog: Finding Friends in Fresno

04/19/2011 at 09:00 AM ET
Belly at 30 weeks! – Courtesy Jennie Finch

Please give a warm welcome to our newest celebrity blogger, Jennie Finch! The recently retired softball player is expecting her second child in late June and will be sharing her pregnancy experience with us monthly.

The Olympian, 30 — who won gold in Athens and silver in Beijing — and her husband, Major League Baseball pitcher Casey Daigle, are already parents to son Ace Shane, 4Β½.

You can find her online on FacebookΒ and @JFinch27 on Twitter.

Currently 30 weeks along, Finch writes about the family’s latest move — to Fresno, Calif. this time — connecting with new moms in the area, and pitching while pregnant!

We so greatly enjoyed our spring training time in Arizona! It flew by. We saw friends, had softball clinics, visited my old stomping grounds at the University of Arizona, went to games, played, and did a TON of swimming because that was Ace’s favorite thing.

Baby Daigle is super active. We’ve had fun as a family watching my belly shift from side to side. I’ve been able to feel his arms, legs and head. It’s just a sweet, sweet miracle. Casey’s not quite sure how he feels about the moving. He’d rather just look from a distance. I wonder how many other women’s husbands felt the same way? Kind of weirded out by their wife’s belly moving around…

Heartburn and my allergies are constant these days. Tissues and Tums are always on my bedside. I keep telling myself those are small prices to pay for a miracle like this!

I had a blast getting out on the softball field the last few weekends in March. We went out to Bentonville, Arkansas for another Jennie Finch Softball Camp. It is our fourth time going out to Razorback Country and it gets better every time.

It’s such an amazing opportunity to inspire and encourage young women! We live in what seems to be a dark world at times and to see these girls having fun, being active, gaining confidence, learning to deal with adversity, overcome failure, and so much more, inspires me to keep doing it!

I have to say it took me a few days to recover from this one. I needed some serious rest. I’m not sure if it was the pitching and hitting demonstrations being 7 months pregnant, being on my feet all day or what, but it was so worth it! So grateful to be pitching, baby bump in the front. Every time I wonder if it’s the last pitch for a few months.

I’m at that part of my pregnancy, the beginning of the third trimester, when some of the changes to my body get to be a little uncomfortable. I’d forgotten from the first time around, but was reminded when I put on shorts for the first time and it prompted me to start doing walking lunges up and down the hall of our apartment building.

I panicked for a minute, but then laughed about it and realized it’s kind of crazy how much our bodies can change and kind of a miracle that they change back! Just working on taking good care of Baby Daigle in there and the rest will work itself out.

Our next stop is May 14 & 15 in Ardmore, Oklahoma. It’s our last JFSCamp before Baby Daigle’s arrival. I need to dig deep and find one more pitching demo within. I’m pretty sure I’ll be able to. Fingers crossed! I think a bigger problem is finding enough stretch in my USA Jersey to fit…

Pitching while pregnant! – Courtesy Jennie Finch

Like I said, spring training was so wonderful, but before we knew it, it was over. It’s the life of all but a few ballplayers to not know where you’ll be from one day to the next. Things can change just like that. As it turns out, Casey is starting the season with the San Francisco Giants’ AAA team, the Fresno Grizzlies, so we were excited to pack up our things and head to northern California.

Casey’s off to a great start for the season. He got his first win and save this week out of the bullpen. As a pitcher I have so much respect for the ‘pen. He and the other guys get to the ballpark hours and hours before the game with the rest of the team, but they have to wait and wait to perform. Sometimes it’s after 9 p.m. when they’re called to action. They sit there on the cold metal seats, shivering in their hooded sweatshirts. The craziest part is that they love it!

Casey loves it! He goes to the ballpark every day knowing there might be a chance he gets in and is able to contribute. Last night, there we were, Ace snuggled in, asleep on my shrinking lap, drooling on my shirt, and Casey was getting ready to go in at 10 p.m. and the temperature was in the 40s. My back and arm hurt just watching him!! But we’re both grateful that he can do what he loves.

We’re once again enjoying getting to know a new city and ball club. I’m even happier because there are lots of expecting mommies here with the team, and other kids for Ace to play with. We’re getting to share our belly and baby stories. It’s amazing to be able to share with other women going through the same things as a mom, and trying to do it in the uncertain world of baseball.

Away from family, always in new apartments, we share any info we have as far as keeping our kids on a schedule (even if it’s a very different schedule from other little kids. Their daddies play late and sleep late!), doctors in different cities, and how to pull off a mobile nursery. Women are incredible when it comes to sharing information. If anyone out there has any tips for us, please post them in the comments and I will share with all the other moms up here.

Ace is adjusting well to Fresno. He loves his new room. Lucky for us he’s used to this life! Living out of bags and sleeping in different beds is the norm for him. Finding fun spots for him helps me and Casey connect to new places, too. Parks, play places, indoor pools … it’s the first thing we look for.

Since I’ve partnered with Shout as their new celebrity stain expert, I’ve been talking about how important it is for kids to play (and for us to play with them!) as part of their Go Play initiative. The idea is that we shouldn’t worry about stains from paint or dirt or grass or whatever. Playing is the most important thing, and Shout’s there to clean up the mess.

I’m really happy about the campaign. There was a crazy day of shooting in Arizona that was tons of fun. I had to scramble for wardrobe because nothing I had fit. But what I really loved was that when we got together, they really took into consideration things that are important to me right down to using my number, 27, as part of the program.

They made me think about things I’ve learned and want to share — things I work on every day to keep me and my boys grounded as our family travels around the country. With the pace of our lives and baby number two on the way, I don’t get much time to sit and be thoughtful. It’s nice when work gives me an excuse to do it!

One of the best things in Fresno we’ve discovered is all the fresh produce in the Valley. I’m in heaven. It’s just what I’m craving — avocado, strawberries, citrus. Yum! Speaking of which, the little guy is butternut squash-sized these days. Right around 2 lbs. Ace was 8 lbs., 11 oz, so I’m preparing for lots more growth to come! Taking bets on whether or not baby #2 is going to be bigger.

We also think we’ve got a name picked out, but we’ll see. Although, I think since Ace is already using that name to refer to his baby brother, we’re probably locked in. I’m thinking we should have a contest to see if anyone can guess. I have to figure out what that prize would be, but stay tuned!

— Jennie Finch

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Showing 29 comments

Kate on

Ace is a great name and I am really curious about the next one’s name. I am sure they will another cool name for the Baby Daigle. If Jennie gives a few names that she likes, but didn’t choose in the end, I think it would be easier for us to guess πŸ˜‰

Heather on

I am 31 weeks and my husband is the same way about the baby moving! It kind of creeps him out a bit! I think it is so fun, but he too wants to “watch from a distance”.

Angela on

I went to school with Jennie and I have to tell you that she is just as amazing as she ever was. She truly was, is and always will be one awesome woman! You kick butt Jennie!

J.J. on

Can’t believe it’s going to be soon!! Can’t wait to see the new little guy..and his name!!

Bridget on

Very cool that she is living in the same town as me! I am also pregnant and due around the same time as her. Me and my husband really want to take our son out to a game sometime soon!

tobeornottobe on

Great news! Welcome to Fresno:)

Wilma on

I won’t lie, I wish I had seen you here at UA! You are my hero! I’m horrible at softball, but I love playing the game; I’m very excited to read your blogs, because I know it is as close as I’ll ever get to you πŸ™‚ Congrats and I’m excited to read more!

momof3 on

I’m from Fresno. Don’t live there anymore though. Enjoy the heat!

Hi on

No idea about the first name, but I’m 99% positive that his middle name will be Landon.
I’ll take a wild guess and say Gus Landon Daigle.

Linda on

My Granddaughter is a big fan, we recently spoke about having babies, which she said she wants none of, but at 13 that should be the response. I hope she follows her dreams, she is an ace softball pitcher in an ASA league and has hopes to continue through high school and college.

Jennie, could you do a blog on never giving up, don’t get bored with the game and stay focused, I know she will listen to you.

Kandace on

That’s so awesome you are having another baby! You are seriously the greatest pitcher to ever walk this earth! Crongrats on the baby πŸ™‚

Kathllen on

She looks amazing! But I always thought she was gorgeous. Jennie comes across as so sweet and down to earth in these blogs. She seems to appreciate all she has. Hope the rest of her pregnancy goes well.

Amiee Moreno on

How exciting, welcome to Fresno Jennie! I wish you and your family the best we are huge fans of yours =) My sister and her family use to go watch you in AZ!

Natalie on

Jennie, you are too cute preggers! Thanks for being such a great role model for young softball players. My daughter looks up to you and strives to be a better player because of it. Best of luck to you and your family!

Amy on

Jennie you are so gorgeous and inspiring! So happy for you!

Martha Castaneda on

Oh goodness I wish I could have all the energy you have and I am not pregnant. You are a huge role model and inspiration to all women. My hats off to you and your family. I enjoyed watching you play and will miss you dearly.

As a mother of 3 grown children my advice is enjoy every moment. They grow up so fast and before you know you are sitting wondering how the time has gone by.

Congrats! and looking forward to hearing about all your adventures

Lyndsay on

Welcome to Fresno! If you’re looking for a great moms group in the area, try MOMS Club of Fresno – North.

Nicole on

One of cool things coming up in Fresno, is Farmers Market. It’s in downtown Clovis and they have a lot of fresh fruit and vegetables. I am not sure when it starts, but my bf and I always stop by to pick up the various grapes offered and etc. they offer great deals at the farmers market than in the store and a lot of the local farmers will make sure you have “plenty” in your bag and throw in extra fruit to for you to try.

Danielle on

Hi Jennie & Family,
My sister worked in ticket sales for The Bandits when you played for them! We met once! I’ve been enjoying your blog and congratulations on your pregnancy!! Ace must be sooooooooooo excited to become a big brother!!

Debi on

Name him Catcher or Ketcher, great name for a pitchers son……LOL!

tara on

Congrats Jennie – you have always been a huge inspiration to us as we are huge softball fans and players. My youngest daughter will be playing at your stadium this summer in Chicago. We are soooo excited but so disappointed that you will not be there…Best of luck to you!

kathy andrade on

Hi there, special lady ! Wow- Fresno ! We have relatives there, like Alli’s younger brother Wayne. Allison sure enjoyed seeing you in the Phoenix area when you terrific gals all got to meet up. And I sure enjoy Mom’s and Dad’s Xmas letter updates. Baby names are always a thrill for me ! Of couse ACE is so perfect ! Just what will be new little one’s name !!!???? How about CLETE ? STRIKE ? GIANT ? ROOKIE ? STEEL (Steal)? BUSTER ? BABE ? (Daddy is Casey – like Casey at the bat ?!) HORACE ? DUKE ? OMG – I am so excited and can’t wait !

Absolutely love your blog. I got the connection through my sister-in-law’s husband who lives in Clovis and teaches at Fresno State which happens to be Tom’s and my college alma mater ! After Arizona, you’ll adapt to the summer heat. Oh, Jennie – life uncertain and in and out of suitcases and locations ! You are amazing ! What an ADVENTURE !!!!!

Kirsten on

I think you’ll name him Deuce. πŸ™‚

Chelsy Wilson on


As the wife of a former minor league baseball player I can relate.

Welcome to Fresno! We live here too and just had our first baby 3 weeks ago:)

If you need a pediatrician I recommend Fresno Children’s Medical Group. They are open Saturdays which is a plus. If you need a doctor I HIGHLY recommend Dr. Richard Shebelut’s, he is amazing. Other than that for some fun things to do there is Woodward Park, The Little Gym, Fig Garden. If you have any questions don’t hesitate to ask. Enjoy!


Kelli on

I just love Jennie Finch. She is what made me love to watch & play softball. She is an all-american and can prove that GIRLS RULE/BOYS DROOL! πŸ™‚ Keep up the good work Jennie and congratulations on your addition!

Catalina on

Welcome to Fresno! I am about 30 weeks pregnant with our second boy also! We hope to make it out to a game soon, although most occur during nap time or bedtime, so it’s been hard! If we make it out to a game we will keep and eye out for your husband’s pitching!

Emmy on

I totally think the new ones name should be Duece!!! Ace and Duece!!! Tooooo cute!!!

Fit2Bmom on

Jennie – your pant looks just like our Colorblock Long Pant…is it?! We knew you would love the clothes that we sent to you but if this is from our collection then WOW! We would officially feel awesome.

fresnolofts on

Welcome to Fresno, we are happy to have you. It is true that Fresno has great produce and that is not the only thing Fresno has to offer. Fresno has restaurants that create delicious food with the fresh produce. While in Fresno, make sure you check out the Tower District, and Downtown Fresno’s Mural District there is a lot to do in those areas and they are unlike other neighborhoods around town.