Editor's Note: tl;dr but there's a rule that any Optimist Prime Fanpost must be promoted to the front page, so I'm just following AN's bylaws. -Nico
Here we are again, the annual installment of "How the hell does he get to do all this cool stuff?!" post you have all been waiting for. Okay, I highly doubt anyone has been waiting for it, but apparently my new forte is filling dead space in the off-season, so here we go:
As some of you know I occasionally go to A's Fantasy Camp at Papago and play ball with the A's, then come home and brag about it. Wouldn't you? Who better to brag to than people who;
A. Can totally relate to the stoke it is. (sorry, surfer speak for totally awesome experience)
B. Can totally max out a credit card and do it too!
I chose to go to this year's camp because it is the last year at Papago for the A's, and it is a bit of nostalgia having played there a few years ago. Honestly, I wanted to go yard, ok!? Plus, the clubbies are the absolute coolest guys and fun to be around (nod particularly to James and Chad) and they let me come into the clubhouse when spring training starts, and I am hoping they will be giving away stuff they don't want to move!
It was pretty amazing, as usual, hanging out with Hendu, Cadaret, Shooty Babitt, Gil Heredia and even the Mariner's guys we played against had some great coaches again, including a new one for me, Norm Charlton of Nasty Boys fame. And let me tell you, one of the most priceless moments, sitting in around the training room with a bunch of minor leagues hanging on every word from Chili Davis about hitting....wow.
I can't go into details about what was seen/said in the clubhouse, but I will tell you it was great talking with and hanging out in the clubhouse with Nate Freiman, Derek Norris, Ryan Cook, Sean Doolittle and a host of up and coming prospects, notably Jeremy Barfield, Luke Montz and even Casey Chavez was floating around. Just one side note. I am pretty sure that Greg Cadaret and Norm Charlton will still fail a breathalizer two weeks later.
Without further ado, some pics from camp. Drool away....
Hendu picked me on his team and put me in Center. I will take that one to my grave, thanks Hendu!
Didn't go yard, but some pretty deep drives a few feet from the track!
The personal achievements are always fun, but fade quickly. The friendships made though are priceless.
Was I fast or the throw just slow? Who cares, we are all over 35 anyway!
Doing it Ziggy Style!
6'8" Nate making me look small
Anyone remember this guy?
Luke Montz. Don't worry, this is just normal cooling down routine, he didn't have surgery.
Sorry, one more "OMG that guy is huge!" photo. I am 6"2"
After a long week of baseball, booze, BS and bruised egos, the friends I made were awesome and the scraped knee has almost healed. And what was waiting for me at home? My Squirrel Friend waiting for his daily feeding of almonds. Nice to be home. Go A's!