SAN DIEGO – As Hurricane Isaac approached the southern Louisiana coast on Tuesday, Braves pitchers Chad Durbin and Ben Sheets stayed in touch with their wives and other family members back home in that state.
Durbin’s wife and two children were at home in Baton Rouge, in south central Louisiana, 80 miles from New Orleans. Sheets’ wife and two children were home in Monroe, in the northeast corner of Louisiana.
“It’s supposed to be a tropical storm by the time it gets to Baton Rouge,” Durbin said. “Lose power, that type of thing. Hopefully it doesn’t gain any more strength overnight. It’s a 1 [Category 1 hurricane], but as soon as it hits land it’ll break up a little bit.”
As a longtime resident of Baton Rough, Durbin has been through numerous tropical storms and hurricanes.
“There’s more concern with how slow it’s moving,” he said. “The more rain we get, the worse it is — especially in New Orleans, with their issues. Baton Rough usually holds up pretty well. We just lose power.”
Isaac was approaching the coast on the seven-year anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, which devastated New Orleans.
“Katrina was terrible, but the one that followed it, Rita, was bad on everybody, too,” Durbin said, “because nobody had recovered yet and we had all that rain.”
Durbin got an update Tuesday from his wife, Crystal.
“My wife is there with the two kids and they’ve got a generator ready, for losing power,” he said. “[Preparing for storms] is run-of-the-mill down there. I just hope nothing bad happens, that a tree doesn’t fall or something. She’s ready. She’s a pro. I wish I was there to help out. She’s got five-month-old and a five-year-old…. She’s got help. She’s got my friends, her family, my family, ready to help….
“[Sheets’] family is up north, even with I-20, like if you go straight into Louisiana from Jackson, Miss. So they’ll just get a bunch of rain.”