Saturday, April 22, 2006

Changing Speeds

Notyourdoc wants to know if I had a mental tool breakdown? How much time do you have? I can still remember it like it was yesterday. Putting the ball in my manager's hand. Stepping off the mound (not knowing that it was actually going to be my last time doing so). I looked up into the late-September night sky and inhaled the crisp air. Of course, I was in full denial of what had just happened. And I was full of excuses too. If the second baseman had just a bit more range. How could the shortstop pull the first baseman off the bag? Why couldn't the right fielder hit the cutoff man like he was supposed to? Why did the groundskeeper mow the grass differently that day?

But truthfully, I was getting hit hard in more ways than one. My mind was not focused on throwing strikes but rather on the divorce papers that were served on me just two days prior. She waited for an away trip to have me served. It was all very well coordinated on her part. She moved out that same morning and took the two kids with her. My daughter was 8 years old and my son was 17 months. In an instant, my life changed. I became bitter and found myself throwing one pity-party after another. Things only got worse when my daughter mentioned on the phone that Mommy had a new boyfriend. I quickly sank into several bad habits during the offseason. It was hard enough for me to eat innings with a clear head and healthy body. But when I showed up at spring training without either, the team put me into rehab and offered me a scouting job in Florida. 23+ years and several clubs later, I'm still scouting in Florida.

And yesterday was my son's 25th birthday. I know he's not in baseball. I've checked each and every year since he graduated from high school. And he's probably done with college by now, assuming he went. Maybe even married. For all I know, I could be a grandfather and not even know it.

2 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

notyourdoc, it seems like you are tryingtobehisdoc. To me, your observations are way off. You think he gets mad when a player's mental tool breaks down because of his own problems? I guarantee you that any scout would be turned off by a player's mental error regardless of his own mental stablilty. Cutter (if he is real) is a baseball guy, and baseball guys hate to see the game not played well. Baseball is not the root of mental problems, it is an escape from them, at least to me. Notyourdoc, I would be surprised if you have ever played the game, or knew much about it.

3:21 AM  
Anonymous notyourdoc said...

Dear Anonymous -

Apparently I was not "way off". Cutter responded to my question by telling us more about his psychological history. Baseball may not be the root of mental problems. But since it is a game played by human beings, mental problems are often express by the players playing the game in the way that they play the game.

Apparently my question touched you also, given the attack you launched (and your attempt to make it a personal attack).

If we are keeping score, I'm up, 1-0 after 1.

3:50 AM  

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