ABOUT GHOSTS IN THE GRASS

There are really two halves to this project … this site. The first half is the novel I wrote called Ghosts in the Grass that I’ll be publishing over the course of 27 weeks. It tells the stories of three different people, while not aware of it at first, connected through one team over the course of one season through a series of vignettes…glimpses into what it’s like to be a fan of this game. This story is more than just about these three characters and the people around them, though. It is about the experience of the game of baseball. The experience of Spring Training, of being in a baseball stadium, of being intoxicated by this beautiful game. It is about the love of America’s Pastime and how it impacts all those around it, for better or for worse. While it may certainly be overly romantic about the game, and maybe even a bit naive, this story is born from my love and passion for this sport.

To jump right into the novel, start here.

The other half of this site/project (Warehouse Windows) is my story…my journey through baseball as a fan and as an employee of the New Jersey Cardinals, the Baltimore Orioles and the New York Mets. My relatively short time entrenched in the game was not always great and was not always perfect, but they were some of the best years of my life shared with some of the best people I have ever known. I thought it would be an interesting exercise to put those stories out as they relate to the story I wrote. Revealing my inspiration, basically.

I hope you enjoy it and, if you do, please share.

Celebrations

In my five years of working for Major League baseball teams there was plenty to celebrate. But no moment echos through the years for me like when the Orioles beat the Mariners in the 1997 Division Series.

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Middle of the Eighth

So, as the game began, the focus was on how many more games the team would lose before they figured out how to win. As the first few innings played out, no one seemed to notice that the pitcher was throwing as if possessed by Cy Young himself. They only noticed that the team wasn’t hitting and that they still couldn’t get on base. Cheering was not allowed in the press box, but that did not include jeering, of which there was plenty.

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Passing on a Passion…or Not

I never wanted to feel like I was forcing my sports and interests on them. Yeah, I dressed them in Mets and Giants stuff and bought them hats, but I never sat them down and told them they had to root for the Mets. The games we attended at stadiums aside, we never forced them to sit and watch a game with us. I would turn it on and they could watch if they wanted and I’d be more than happy to answer any questions they had. However, I felt it was important to never push it on them.

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Top of the Eighth

As he watched the players celebrate in left field, he noticed a baseball cap of the home team sitting in the dirt between second and third. He wasn’t sure who had lost it, but he picked it up, brushed it off, and stared at it. He then took one last look out at the players and then wandered off to the umpire’s locker room.

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Bottom of the Seventh

As he took a ball, he thought about the fans and their passion and what the jeers really meant. He thought about the pitcher, the kids spinning a masterpiece on the mound tonight for a last place team. He thought about his teammates and what that at-bat would mean to them.

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Middle of the Seventh

Therein lies the problems. Baseball is pain. A batter is celebrated if he only fails about 70% of the time. Most pitchers give up hits and runs most of the time. Fielders cannot get to every ball. Only one team wins the final game of the season.

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