The last two weeks have been crazy getting ready for our Prospect Showcase. We have kids from all over the country (mostly the midwest) come in for two days to be evaluated by college coaches and professional scouts. This year, scouts from the Reds and White Sox (of course) were there. College coaches from all over the country were there, including one that I’ve worked with on several occasions for the Atlanta Braves. I got to know alot of them, and talking to them was fun. I got to impress 15 new guys with my baseball knowledge, which is always a good time.
The first day was all evaluation at three different locations. The players were split by position and placed with coaches who were experts in that field. I was placed with middle infielders and was told to take pictures. I had taken several pictures in the morning, during the bulk of the evaluation, but was asked to take more of on field instruction. I took 160 pictures the first day. I’ve also realized that I shouldn’t be near catchers in full gear with a camera in hand. I will take entirely too many pictures.
I was also hit with a ball on day 1. I was standing behind a catcher (should be safe, right? He catches the ball for a living) taking a picture and the ball short hopped off the turf, flew over the catcher’s shoulder and hit me in the shin. I didn’t react right away, and realized I had 10 catchers looking at me for one. I was “taught” in high school not to react if a ball comes your way (as long as it isn’t above your shoulders) . Both times I’ve been hit, I didn’t move. Both times catchers were watching. It’s amazing the looks and comments I get for it. I did, however, take 5 more pictures, walk as quickly as I could to the hallway and let out some words. It hurt like hell. And still does.
The second day was to be full of games. There was rain in the forecast, and it didn’t miss us. We pulled tarp in the morning, got 3 of the 5 games in, had a short delay, started the 4th game, and the weather sirens went off. We couldn’t be in the complex, so we were evacuated to a building on campus. We got the all clear and went back to playing. After 3 innings, the skies opened up, and the infield flooded within 5 minutes. We couldn’t play the rest of the games, so we had to move the rest of the day to the Academy. For the next 3 hours, the outfielders and pitchers worked out.
It was an interesting 2 days. I’ve never been this tired, but it was so much fun. I’ll be in Chicago most of next week for a camp, and then again the next week for the Double Duty Classic. That should be a pretty interesting experience, White Sox GM Kenny Williams is a big part of this event.