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.

Bottom of the Fifth

Waiting for buses and airplanes. Waiting in buses and airplanes. Waiting for prima donna pitchers to wind up and waiting for contracts from runners-up baseball teams. His whole life has been spent waiting for something and now he was alone, waiting in a big league outfield, waiting for a game to start, and waiting for a home run so that he could stop waiting and leave a kids game behind. He was tired of it. He was worn down. He was tired.

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Middle of the Fifth

Walking through that turnstile for her was like walking through the Wardrobe, leaving one world behind and entering a new world, where the fears and stress that existed in this world dissipated and were replaced with fears and stresses of a Diamond World. Where life and death were not actually life and death, but euphemisms for succeeding and failing. It was a world within itself, one where she left the problems of the real world behind at the turnstile. Often the joys and pains of this world creeped into her real world, but seldom did she carry the baggage in with her.

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Top of the Fifth

In spite of how uncomfortable he was, he could not think of anywhere else he’d want to be at that moment. Even though at the moment he felt like an outsider looking in, he felt like he was part of the team and something much larger than himself. The transition of off-season Intern to in-season Intern was a dramatic transition. While much of the day-in and day-out stuff never changed, the season brought on a whole other set of responsibilities, responsibilities that he enjoyed and had become comfortable with, even if he still occasionally stumbled in them. He was beginning to feel like he wasn’t just there to fill a role but was there because he was needed. He felt that while others were capable of doing his job, he wasn’t sure if they could be as reliable as he was.

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Opening Day > Christmas Day

For those of us that love baseball, oftentimes there is more excitement around Opening Day than Christmas for all the same reasons, plus the fact that if everything goes right, you get to feel that excitement every day for more than six months.

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Bottom of the Fourth

In a moment, the ball rose above the infield so quickly that not one of the fielders reacted to the explosion of power. The center fielder immediately turned his back to the stunned infielders and ran toward the wall at full speed. The three runners on base immediately started their turn around the bases, each of their cleats making contact with the next base at nearly the same time that the center fielder reached the wall. He made one last desperate leap at the ball as the old Player held his breath as best he could while running full speed. For a moment, he thought he had just touched first base for the last time.

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Middle of the Fourth

This night and morning were all rolled together into a fitful night where sleep was simply not going to happen. He spent it between books and the TV and the couch and his bed, desperately seeking a sleep that was destined to escape him. Anxiety, Fear, Doubt, Excitement, Joy, Hope, and all of their friends and family were engaged in a raucous house party in his head and he was helpless to stop them.

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