maandag 13 september 2010

Scout's honor!

When you travel to Curacao for a vacation you're bound to encounter baseball related stuff. As I wrote a few weeks back, a bunch of good players in the Show come from this small island with no more than 150.000 inhabitants. So I wasn't surprised to see a big banner in our hotel welcoming Sandy Alston to the island. Didn't know the guy, but it was clear he was someone of importance within the MLB. I checked him out and he turned out to be... He was on Curacao for a clinic.
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One of my days there, I decided I would wear my Dodgers cap to breakfast. When I entered the breakfast room five guys were around a table. Broad shouldered men and they wore... Baseball jerseys. One of them wore a Red Sox one, another a Rockies one. There was a Padres guy and two fellas wore Dodgers jerseys. one of them noticed my cap and smiled. We shook hands and exchanged knowing looks. 'There's always next year', I said. He smiled and nodded his head. 'Not gonna happen for you as well', I said to the Red Sox wearing guy. The Padres guy asked me who would win the NL West, Giants or Padres. I told him I didn't like either team, but I tought the Padres would win it. That satisfied him. I wished them well.
The next day the two Dodgers guys were sitting outside and one of them called me. He said he'd seen me at the stadium. Or that's what I think he meant. I had been so sure the day before they all spoke english. But these men didn't. Yeah, a few words, but mostly spanish. And my spanish is non existing. So we talked a bit. Hands and feet. They were from the Dominican Republic. One of them was an infield coach, the other a scout. The latter one told me he signed Troncoso, a few years back.
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So many questions popped up in my head. What did they think of the McCourts? Should Torre stay on? What about the lineup? Starting pitchers? But the language barrier was too big. We threw names at each other. I did my 'Dutch players in the MLB' bit and the scout tried to come up with a few as well. I told him I like Manny. He smiled, he should, Manny's from his home country.
After fifteen minutes we were empty. I'd have to follow a course in spanish before this conversation could continue. I said goodbye and told them to hunt down some prospects.
Half an hour before I had to take the shuttle to the airport for my flight back home, the scout came walking up to me. He said something which I understood as 'I was looking for you, take this'.
The Dodgers organization may be rotten, or maybe not. Could be it's just McCourt. Who can tell? This Dominican scout however, whom I'd never met and only partialy understood, gave me a present. I was stunned. I decided last week to get rid of my belly and get my muscles a bit more toned, so I joined a gym. I now can work out in my very own Dodgers shorts! To quote the scout when I thanked him for the gift: 'viva los Doyers!'

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