….Just wanted to give you a shout-out and say “thank-you” for providing me with a platform to grow with my kids. Years ago, when I was a kid, you were forced upon me by the older neighborhood kids. If I wanted to play with the “big boys,” I had to learn the game and that’s when this love affair started! My older brother brought you home one day and I watched him and our father play an intimate game of catch. At the time, it was more like roll-the-ball, toss-the-ball, nonetheless I was mesmerized. Anxiously awaiting my shot to get a piece of the action, I got chills the first time I heard the words, “Chris, it’s your turn.”
As a kid, I loved my team, the long lectures from coaches, the smell of dirt, the hot summer nights, and everything about baseball including the 1985 World Champion Kansas City Royals. When I reached high school, you started to get serious on me and I think you wanted to get married, but I was a young player and wanted to see (play) other sports. We had a great run, but by the time I went to college we had officially broken-up. No love lost, we had just grown apart.
Fast-forward fifteen years, I am married with three sons. I’m not sure why, but ironically enough, my wife gifted me a baseball glove for Father’s Day. This may sound like a stretch, but my wife reunited me with my childhood sweetheart (I’m sure during the season, my wife feels like we spend too much time together). Upon receiving this gift, I immediately felt the joy of being a kid on the baseball diamond and wanted the same for my boys.
Being a father and a coach are two things that I take very seriously. I started coaching my sons in t-ball (5 years old) and I quickly learned the importance of being able to speak their language. Over the years, we’ve experienced just about everything through the game - success, frustration, love, hate, joy, tears, motivation, selflessness, endless laughter and most importantly growth. Baseball, you are the ultimate life analogy and have empowered me to teach my sons how to be men!
As a coach and the founder of a Baseball Club, I’ve mastered the importance of knowing the rules, learned how to play the game, and well versed in playing the game. Yep, playing the game is listed twice because “it is a game, but it’s not a game.” I’m smiling as I write this because I know you understand. As an organization, we’ve been able to teach our players about social injustice, composure, integrity, problem-solving, self-reliance, the fairness of unfairness, and overcoming adversity.
Baseball, before the new season starts, I just wanted to express my love and appreciation for what you’ve done for me, my family and our players. I’m eternally grateful and thankful for our love affair.