Turning Down the Dodgers

“They do everything with such passion and to such detail. You don’t play with that detail without loving it. I don’t care if somebody’s bossing you around, making you do it, you still have to concentrate from your heart.”
-Orel Hershiser

The truth is that the L.A. Dodgers asked me to throw batting practice to their team. Perhaps the surprise is that I turned them down.

In celebration of April Fool’s Day, I am sharing a story that I have yet to tell. It’s the story behind why I never threw BP to the Dodgers.

In early February, I emailed the Dodgers to ask if I could throw BP to them. I was particularly interested and persistent in my communications with the Dodgers because of their connection with the Green family. Christina-Taylor’s father, John, is a scout for the Dodgers. I wanted Christina-Taylor’s memorial baseball patch on a Dodger uniform. And I longed to throw BP to the team that Christina-Taylor had once dreamt of playing for.

The Dodgers called me back and said they were thinking about having me throw; I was told it was a matter of logistics. A week later they called to say it wouldn’t work out. I thanked them for their consideration.

A few days before I left for Arizona, I got an email from the Dodgers asking if I was available to throw to them on Sunday, Feb. 20th. My email response,
“I would love to throw to the Dodgers and I am available on Sunday. But I
can’t. I promised the Indians they would be the first team I threw to. They are
my home team and I want to keep my word with them.”

So, I turned the Dodgers down. Not an easy thing to do but I knew it was the right thing to do.

But I have to admit it would have been so cool to wear Dodger Blue.

1 Comment

If the Dodgers had had any sense of grace or history they would have issued you an invitation to throw BP another day. It speaks volumes about the state of disrepair into which their front office has fallen that that didn’t happen, and even more about you that you felt compelled to honor your promise to the Indians – and were honest enough to tell the Dodgers as much.

As for wearing Dodger Blue, you may not realize it but you already did: the original uniform colors of the New York Mets were derived from the orange of the old New York Baseball Giants, the dark pinstripes of the Yankees, and the blue of the old Brooklyn Dodgers. Even if the Mets gave you a black jersey, the blue is still there in the team logo and the border around the letters. So you wore Dodger Blue when you pitched BP at Port St. Lucie!

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