May 14, 2000
Being a mother is an interesting calling in life. It is something that I cannot envision doing. Fatherhood is a breeze compared to what a mother must face. As a father, you can get away with a lot. If a baby has a dirty diaper you can plead ignorance and mom will take care of it. During potty training you can explain that you don’t understand the concept and mom will take care of it. If a child throws up, dad will usually freak out while mom will clean it up. Usually, it is the father that will instill a love of baseball into a child. The mother however also plays an important part in the development of a ball player. Looking back, my mother helped me in a number of ways to become the best player I could be. There were countless times that I would drag her from the house to try out my latest pitch or stand her in the batter’s box to test my control. She always made sure my uniform was clean regardless of how many stolen bases or diving catches I made. She drove me to practice every day and always cheered when I came home without a hit. She remembered treats on game day for the team and she kept score at each game. She rattled umpires when she felt they were treating me unfairly and she chastised me when I brushed back a hitter from the mound. She bandaged my knees and elbows and even rushed me to the hospital a few times after breaking an arm or finger. Above all, she taught me that there is more to the game than offense and defense. There is an emotional side to baseball that must be experienced. To commit to the game you have to share its soul. I am grateful to my mother for helping me understand the game and for being there for me.