“WHY IS DADDY GOING TO ARIZONA?”
It’s ironic that a man who holds family so dear would spend so much time away from home, a point not lost on Colorado Rockies veteran Jason Giambi.
“I give him a hard time,” Giambi jokes with a small collection of reporters in the Rockies clubhouse. “I ask him, ‘Why do you hate your family?’ ”
The line draws laughs from the group in attendance, but elicits a quick, yet good-natured retort from Karen Moyer, who points out that Giambi, 41, is no youngster himself: “He’s one to talk.”
Karen is fiercely supportive of Jamie and doesn’t reveal the slightest bit of regret that her husband, who has been a professional baseball player the entirety of their relationship, continues to play.
John Henry Photography / Courtesy Moyer family
The Moyer family, from left: Kati, Karen, Duffy, Dillon, Yeni, Timoney, McCabe, Jamie, Grady, Hutton.
“As a family, why not support it?” she says. “It’s like icing on the cake, and it’s a six-layer cake.”
The Moyers have eight children ranging from Dillon, a sophomore second baseman at UC-Irvine, to Katalina and Yenifer, 5-year-olds the Moyers adopted from Guatemala. High school senior Hutton is an infielder like Dillon and both will be eligible for the draft this summer, meaning there could potentially soon be three Moyer men involved in professional baseball.
The family got used to having Jamie at home last season as he worked to heal his elbow. Though Karen notes he was “a fish out of water times,” it was nice to have the extra driver around to help shuttle the kids to and from school and various sporting activities.
If Jamie is the engine of the Moyer machine, then Karen is the fuel. It is her unbending support that makes everything go. As the daughter of former Notre Dame basketball coach Digger Phelps, she’s familiar with the lifestyle of big-time sports, and embraces it with gusto. “I’ve become really good at packing and unpacking and making anywhere we are home,” she says.
The younger children, used to having Jamie around, wondered “Why is Daddy going to Arizona?” The older kids embrace it. It’s what they know.
In addition to her home responsibilities, Karen is also Chairman of The Moyer Foundation, a non-profit charity that aims to help children, funding programs such as Camp Erin, which helps children dealing with the loss of loved ones, and Camp Mariposa, which serves those coming from families plagued by addiction.
Then there is Spouses in Sports, a web site that aims to support the wives of professional athletes.
“When Jamie left for spring training, it was his 26th time and I still get that lonely feeling,” she says. “It normalizes it when I talk to my best friend, who goes through the same thing. The team takes care of the guy, so now you’re going to have a site that helps the wife.”
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