Thursday, August 23, 2007

The Value Of An Autograph

Yesterday morning on XM Satellite Radio's "Home Plate" baseball channel, host Mark Patrick read this column on the air, and I was moved by it.

A routine autograph request to a minor league ballplayer turned out to be something more.
"Hello," said the mother. We said nothing in return and continued to act as if we couldn't see or hear her. She stumbled at our coldness, and cast hear eyes around sadly. She looked at her son, who never took his eyes off us, smiled, and then mustered enough courage to try again.

I can't explain to you what its like to avoid someone on purpose. When I write about the concept it just seems too rude and heartless. Maybe it is, but I still do it all the time. In my line of work, sometimes you have to ignore people. You have to tune out the noise of the game.
The column comes from the "Non-Prospect Diaries," written by 26-year-old career minor league pitcher Dirk Hayhurst in Baseball America. The guy may not have a major league future, but has a gift for perceptive writing that most would only dream of.

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