“Never forget, there is a heartbeat in this game.” ~ Joe Torre, former player & manager (Baseball Hall of Fame, 2014)
Yesterday, Grant turned four. And, all he wanted to do for his birthday was to play some ball with his dad at the nearby baseball diamond.
We were nearby, too. We had just transported and released a spotted turtle to a lakeside just a few blocks away.
Just as we were driving off, I saw the baseball diamond.
“Let’s stop here,” I said to Editor/Husband when I spotted the diamond. Or, maybe it was something more like a shouted, “HEY! WHAT’S WRONG WITH YOU??? STOP!!!” just to make sure we didn’t drive too fast, too far away.
And, that’s where we found Grant and his dad. Playing ball.
Grant would like you to know that he is a Washington Nationals’ fan and Bryce Harper is his favorite player.
Grant has the swagger of a big leaguer. He knows how to swing the bat,
knock the dirt off his cleats, and dig into the batter’s box.
“When I hit the ball, I do want to hurt it.” ~ Bryce Harper, OF, Washington Nationals
He’s got pretty good speed for being only four, and the sort of youthful stamina …
… that runs out every home run full-tilt as if it was a thisclose inside-the-parker.
He can slide feet first whether he needs to or not.
And, his very first head-first slide into home is documented here.
When pitching, he has an intimidating stare …
… an unorthodox pitching style that occasionally includes standing behind the rubber …
… and the confidence to shake off the catcher whenever necessary.
“I’m really trying to be a pitcher out there. I’m not trying to light up the radar gun all the time.” ~ Stephen Strasburg, P, Washington Nationals
As for fielding …
“A player running the bases shall be out, if the ball is in the hands of an adversary on the base, or the runner is touched with it before he makes his base; it being understood, however, that in no instance is a ball to be thrown at him.” ~ The Knickerbocker Rules, 1845.
Well, they’re working on that.
“I just like to play the game.” ~ Ryan Zimmerman, INF, Washington Nationals
Happy Birthday, Grant.
You’re why I love baseball.
(Oh, and P.S. I know you love the Nats and all, but couldn’t you just give the Orioles a try?)
Photos: Saturday, May 24, 2014, Fawn Lakes Baseball Diamond, Spotsylvania, Virginia
(Thank you to Grant and his dad, Shane Reid.)