A Letter To Becky

Dear Becky,

I’m tempted to make this letter all about baseball because I know you wouldn’t object to that, but I won’t. It’ll only be 75% about baseball. Balance is good, or something.

So, I went to the dentist yesterday and…no, screw it. This whole letter is going to be about baseball. It’s the one letter I’m writing where I don’t feel like I have to conjure up discussion topics based on what I’ve done recently.

You don’t need to hear about how fluoride is the worst, or about how its taste stays with me all day and resides in the pit of my stomach.

You don’t need to hear about how the one size fits all head rest on the dentist chair doesn’t fit anyone at all. Who did they have test that out? Someone’s elbow?

No, I won’t bore you with those details. Or the one about how I had to wear goggles as a safety precaution. Or about how the bib I was wearing got caught around the head rest and when I went to sit up, I was stuck.

Nope, this letter will not have any of that.

Baseball. Baseball. Baseball.

But first, you said that you’re obsessed by the Watergate scandal. I’ll admit, I don’t really know what that is, even though I’ve heard it mentioned a lot.

So I like it up on Wikipedia, and wowee, was I ever surprised.

All this time, I thought it was a scandal that had to do with water because every scandal or controversy is always called ___-gate. Like deflategate.

Nope! Not this one. Watergate is actually the name of the place that was broken into. Who knew!?

Wait, is Watergate where the “___-gate” thing originated? Life is making so much more sense now.

I’ll definitely read more about this now and peruse through some YouTube videos about it. I’m a big fan of historical scandals since the only ones we get these days are tweets on Twitter. Nothing outrageous ever happens anymore. And if it does, it takes months to know the full story.

Why do you like the Watergate scandal?

Alright, shall we talk baseball?

You’re a fan of the Red Sox and I’m a fan of the Blue Jays, which means we have a mutual disgust for the New York Yankees.

Though for some reason, I had a Yankees hat when I was a kid.

At the same time, I liked the Red Sox.

But the Blue Jays were my favourite.

I was a very confused child, it seems. There was just a lot to like about the Red Sox in the early 2000s. I liked their stadium, especially in video games. I liked Manny Ramirez because he was such a character in left field and always a threat to hit a home run.

And I liked their jerseys, especially in comparison to the plain, boring Yankee pinstripes.

I remember watching the Red Sox and Yankees face each other in the playoffs, and I’d sit there with a bowl of mint chocolate ice cream. That was my favourite ice cream ever.

It was a mix of mint ice cream and chocolate ice cream, with rectangular chocolate chips, which were soft enough to bite into with them making a big crunch.

They don’t seem to make that exact combination anymore. Now, there’s simply mint ice cream, with mini chocolate chips that are too crunchy to truly enjoy.

Or perhaps I’m not sticking my head in the right ice cream freezers at stores.

That’s quite the visual.

As for the current rosters of our teams, I’m jealous of how the Red Sox are able to develop their own draft picks into major league players, while also being able to go out and sign big name free agents.

The Blue Jays can’t seem to do either one.

We can’t attract big name free agents because we’re in Canada, it’s “colder”, we have artificial turf, etc. There’s a million excuses we tell ourselves.

Our best players in the last few years were all acquired via trade. We got Jose Bautista for a minor league catcher. Imagine that! He turned into a star.

We got Edwin Encarnacion because Cincinnati insisted we take him. He turned into a star.

We got Josh Donaldson for a bunch of prospects that were in the lower minor leagues. He won the MVP award.

We can’t seem to develop a Pedroia, or a Betts, or a Bradley Jr., or a Benintendi, or Bogaerts. Oh my God, you have so many.

The best position player we’ve drafted and developed in the last 15 years was Adam Lind. That says it all, I think.

So yeah, I’m jealous of the young, speedy talent your team has.

How do you view the Blue Jays, or how have you viewed them over the years? I think our fan base has the tendency to believe that no one in America thinks about us at all, or if they do, they think we’re a joke.

At the end of the 2016 season, or management said we needed to get younger and faster. That offseason, they signed Steve Pearce and Kendrys Morales, which is the definition of older and slower.

This season shall be interesting. It never plays out as the experts think it will, so who knows what will happen.

Question, Part 1: Have you ever been in a fantasy baseball league?

Question, Part 2: Would you want to be in a fantasy baseball league this season with me and some other bloggers, if we can find them? I think I know of two other people who would join. Anyone who joins would have to be baseball fans and committed to it. I hate when people drop off after one week.

And if we can’t get 8-10 people from WordPress, maybe we each ask a friend(s) to join?

Any interest? I think it would fun.

You don’t have to say yes. In fact, feel free to just say “No”. I won’t be offended at all.

I was in a fantasy baseball league last year and it was fun, except only 3 teams out of 12 took it seriously, which put a damper on it.

So let me know and I’ll set it up before the season starts!

Now then, you wanted me to tell you a story about a dog wanting to play professional baseball. Here it is.

It all started on “Dog Day at the Park” – the ever popular promotion where fans could bring their dog to the game. The game was in Los Angeles, because of course something like this would happen there.

There was a dog sitting on the third base side, in the first row. His name was Slider – yes, named after the pitch. This has to be a cheesy story!

Anyways, a lefty hitter came up to the plate and the infielders all shifted over to the right side. The third basemen went into shallow right field, leaving the shortstop as the only player on the left side.

Slider, having great instincts, had a feeling the hitter was going to drop a bunt down the third base line.

As the pitcher went into his slow (emphasis on slow) wind-up, Slider jumped the barricade and ran onto the field. Just as he was crossing the foul line, the batter dropped down a bunt up the third base line.

But the bunt was a little pop up!

Slider quickly got under it and made the catch in his mouth. If Slider weren’t there, it would’ve dropped and the batter would’ve reached first.

Well, the batter did reach first base (and second) because “Fan Interference” was called.

But from that moment on, fans wanted to see Slider play professional baseball. They started a petition and a Twitter hashtag for him – #MyEyesGetWiderForSlider.

And that’s where things sit (and stay) for now. Slider is still trying to make it onto a team. He’s attending the Free Agent Spring Training camp, if anyone’s looking for him.

The End. (To be continued…)

Lastly, you want to know the dumbest way I’ve ever been injured.

I’m not sure. I’ve never really gotten too injured.

I guess it would have to be when I’m swinging a baseball bat. Even if I wear batting gloves, after a while, a blister will form on the inside of my thumb and then the skin will peel off and when the mixture of sweat and dirt gets in there without me knowing, it’s quite painful…and then I have to swing a bat and it’s just awful.

That normally takes a few weeks to heal properly.

Is that a dumb way of getting injured? I think so.

Anyway, I must be going.

It’s rare that I come across a sports blog on here, let alone a baseball blog, let alone a baseball blog written by someone as knowledgable, entertaining, conversational, and friendly as yourself.

I look forward to this baseball season and the conversations we’re sure to have.

With 27 days until the season starts,

Paul

About Paul

I think of my blog as an all-you-can-read buffet. There's something for everyone and complimentary mints at the door as you leave.
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14 Responses to A Letter To Becky

  1. Becky Turner says:

    That sounds like a traumatic trip to the dentist. I’m glad you survived.

    The one misleading thing about Watergate is that it is named after the building, which if you don’t know, like you, it makes no sense. And yes, that’s where the suffix of “-gate” comes from for any scandal. So like Deflategate, Bountygate, Skygate, etc. That’s something else most people don’t know.

    I have a really weird obsession with the scandal, and I’m not sure why. I learned about it in high school and have since written a handful of papers about it, including a ten-page final paper for my communication ethics class in grad school. I’m just mostly fascinated by the fact that the administration thought they could cover it up, when in fact Nixon was behind the break in and wiretaps. And with everything that’s going on now with the current administration, there are a lot of parallels being made to Nixon and his administration in the 1970s.

    You are correct: we do have a mutual hatred for the Yankees. The one thing I really like about the Sox is their ability to have a good farm system but also get big name guys, like you mentioned. There is a good amount of players on our roster that we drafted or were in our farm system who are successful, and we can go out and get guys like JD Martinez and Chris Sale (who I complain about a lot). The young guys are great on the Sox, and they deserve a chance.

    I’m okay with the Blue Jays. They don’t really seem to give the Red Sox a problem. I have more of a beef with the rest of the AL East. I remember back in like 2011 or 2012 the Marlins had a fire sale and most of the players ended up on the Jays. I do like Joey Bats. I didn’t know Kendrys Morales still played.

    To answer your questions:

    1. Yes, I have been in a fantasy league, actually two. I wasn’t very good at it. I did a lot better in a fantasy football league I was in one season.

    2. That being said, I’d be up for trying it again. As long as the draft isn’t an auction. We did that my first season and it was horrible. I like snake drafts better.

    I don’t have a lot of friends/coworkers who like baseball enough to join a league so I might not be of too much help recruiting, but I’d be interested.

    I love the baseball story about Slider. I pictured him like Hank, the little white dog that the Brewers found at spring training a few years ago and adopted him as team mascot.

    Thanks so much for the letter!

    Liked by 3 people

    • Paul says:

      Watergate sounds right up my alley. I’m definitely going to research it! In high school I learned about the JFK assassination in my media studies class, did a few projects on it, and have been hooked ever since.

      Woah why do you complain about Chris Sale??

      Kendrys Morales still plays, sadly. I shouldn’t be so harsh, he hits home runs and stuff but we signed him for 3 years to DH so…

      Great! re: fantasy league. Oh we will definitely not be doing an auction draft. Snake draft for sure. I plan on it being really simple with the categories we use so it’s fair for everyone.

      I’ll keep ya posted!

      I remember Hank! I think all teams need a real life mascot in addition to, or as a replacement for the guy they make dress up in a costume.

      And, you’re welcome!

      Liked by 3 people

      • Becky Turner says:

        In 2016, Sale was mad that the White Sox had to wear throwback jerseys and he cut them up before the game during batting practice (and not just his, but the entire team’s jerseys). He was sent home that night and didn’t start and was suspended for five games after that. I just think it’s ridiculous that he did that and I’m still not a fan of him because of that. I often refer to him as “Snippy”.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Paul says:

        I remember that! Very childish of him. I support the “Snippy” nickname.

        Liked by 2 people

  2. Dutch Lion says:

    I like you Becky Turner. Funny thing is, I married a Deb Turner and her sister is Becky……not you……she’s a different Becky Turner, I think. She goes by Rebecca Turner. Anyway, I’m a White Sox fan from Chicago and I’ve been playing fantasy baseball since 1994. Some guy on my dorm floor wandered down the hall and asked who wanted in. I joined and have been in leagues with that dude ever since. Still friends. That’s the greatest thing about fantasy….keeping in touch with friends. That and learning so much about random players in any sport. That reminds me, I should join fantasy hockey so I’d learn more about random NHL players. That’s enough for now. I’m tired of writing and you’re tired of reading. Thanks! Reid the “Dutch Lion”

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Ely says:

    How about that one time you told us about hitting your head with your cabinets!!!! Haaaa! Did you forget??!??! You were going to get cereal?! Something of that nature and you had the HARRY POTTER SCAR on your head? Am I nuts or did that happen? Lol!!!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Paul says:

      Oh my God, you’re right! I was bending over to drop an empty water bottle in a recycling bin and when I got up I banged my head and was bleeding for 20 minutes. I stay away from cabinets now.

      Liked by 2 people

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