Trio of stars fields questions from kids at SoxFest

Eaton, Sale and Abreu enjoy give and take with young White Sox fans

Trio of stars fields questions from kids at SoxFest

CHICAGO -- Six-year-old Adam had a very important question for Adam Eaton on Saturday morning at SoxFest, asking the White Sox center fielder his favorite color.

"That's a great question, and that's a great name you have," Eaton told the youngster. "I'd have to go with blue. I love the color blue -- dark blue, not that Cubs stuff."

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When Zoraida Sambolin, the host of the Kids Only Press Conference, asked little Adam his favorite color (red) and why, he responded, "because it's a primary color."

"I learned something today," quipped left-hander Chris Sale, as little Adam came up to high-five Eaton.

There were several funny and adorable moments from those in attendance at the Hilton Chicago for the first-ever, kids-only event -- from the kids, crowd and panel of Eaton, Sale and first baseman Jose Abreu.

While some of the questions were light-hearted, such as little Adam's, others got right to the point. One wanted to know which remaining player on the free-agent market the trio wanted the Sox to sign.

"I just work here," Eaton replied, which received a voice of approval from executive vice president Kenny Williams in the back of the room.

Abreu's mother and Sale's father played roles as key baseball influences in their lives, as did Eaton's. But he also made special mention of the kids he grew up with.

"We actually started a backyard baseball league," Eaton said. "We had uniforms, it was three-on-three, my mom sang the national anthem before opening day. So the kids throughout the neighborhood really influenced me in all sports. ...

"It only lasted about a week. I threw out my brother and the neighbor and it was one vs. three, and we're like, 'We can't do this anymore,' so the backyard baseball league didn't last very long."

The three players have been fortunate to make it to the Majors, but were asked what they'd be doing if it weren't for baseball. Eaton, who majored in kinesiology at Miami (Ohio), said he'd be an occupational therapist, while the 6-foot-3, 255-pound Abreu said he would have at least given soccer a try.

Sale, meanwhile, admitted to putting all his eggs in one basket and surmised he probably would have been a "one-man traveling karaoke singer."

But they all had a baseball dream. One young fan from Las Vegas, who changed his number from 22 to 49 after watching Sale pitch against the Cubs last season, asked Sale his advice for young left-handed pitchers.

"Just have fun," Sale said. "Baseball's a game. Eaton, you can see us out there, we're at the highest level of baseball, and he's smiling all the time, he's having fun running down baseballs. You have to have fun and enjoy it, especially at that stage of the game."

Cash Kruth is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @cashkruth. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.