Sunday, October 23, 2005

Opening Day

My life is a freaking disaster. I wake up not knowing what city I’m in. The hotel rooms all look alike. One fast food joint after another. Crumpled up drive-thru bags litter the floor of my car. The same car that’s been without a/c since the beginning of time. My wife left me years ago. My kids won’t speak to me. And I have no relatives worth mentioning.

I get endless letters, calls, faxes and emails from parents, grandparents, wives, girlfriends, ex-girlfriends, coaches, agents, advisors, friends, acquaintances, twice removed cousins, and sometimes even the players themselves. Not to mention enough videotapes and DVDs to keep both FedEx and UPS in business for yet another year. I’ve even had to hire a recycling company to pick up the reams and reams of paper from alleged scouting agencies who’ve basically ripped off thousands of parents by promising that their special report will get little Johnny to the top of my prospect list.

And did I mention that I get calls from parents? One called me just yesterday to ask if I could go watch his son pitch that evening. The ball park was only 125 miles away. When I started to ask some basic questions about the type of ball movement the kid generates, his father responded with a very proud, “62 mile per hour fastball.”

I never even asked about velocity. The man just blurted it out like I would be instantly impressed. What was I missing here? I simply let his statement linger in silence until the arrogance wore off. Come to find out, the kid was only 12. How the man ever got my cell number, I’ll never know.

And to make matters slightly worse, I need to pick up my area supervisor and the club's national scouting director at 7:50 p.m. from Orlando International Airport. Unfortunately, my prayers for Hurricane Wilma to cancel their flight haven't worked out.

I was told that they had to discuss something with me in person. I have a couple ideas of what it might be, but no matter how you slice it—this ain’t good.

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