Baseblog hasn’t been touched in a while, and I’ve been busy. I just signed up for a new fantasy league, I now have some promotional tools for the blog, and yesterday I got to meet Theo Epstein. You can read about it below.
I remember reading a few days ago how the Owners and General Managers would be in Milwaukee, WI for a meeting. What I didn’t realize until yesterday is how close they really were. Through the comments on a Bleacher Nation article, I discovered that the execs and reporters were at the Pfister Hotel – just a 25 minute busride away from my dorm, on the route that I always take to visit my buddy Theo Syslack at Marquette University. I made my way to the Pfister at about 3:30pm to see what I could.
On the street east of the hotel was about a dozen cabs lined up, with two big trucks with satellites on top of them. I assumed they were helping broadcast something important inside, and all the cabs had been called to take away the execs after the meeting. After about 40 minutes in the cold, nobody I recognized left the building, so I decided to go into the lobby. Immediately after I stopped and stood where I was, Jon Heyman walks right by me mumbling something about Pujols. I look around and I think I recognize Carrie Muskat across the room, Ken Rosenthal down the hall, and a few other reporters. They’re all just standing here chatting. I saw Frank McCourt leave the hotel, as well.
I was going to approach Carrie, but by the time she was done talking she went into another room. I stood in the lobby for another half hour or so, my baseball and pen resting in my jacket pocket. I was wearing jeans and a t-shirt, as well as my authentic Cubs jacket, like Lou Piniella wore in 2010. I look around and I’m surprised that I’m the only fan-type there – everyone else is in a suit on business in the hotel, or those dressed a little more casually have a notebook in their hand and are presumably reporters. I start Googling pictures of Jason McLeod and Jed Hoyer since I haven’t exactly memorized their faces yet. Eventually, I see Theo Epstein walk out of a room and into the middle of the lobby.
I take out my ball and start to walk towards him, he sees me and stops when I ask him for his autograph. He says sure, I hand him my pen and ball, and he asks me to take the cap off. (Not sure why, maybe he doesn’t like the idea of fans chewing on their pen caps, even though this one was clean… or maybe he already had full hands and wanted some assistance.) Either way, I pull the cap off while he holds the pen, and I’m so nervous that I accidentally drop it at his feet. “You’ve got the right type of jacket on,” he says, which is awesome because going to school in Milwaukee brings me nothing but crap for wearing it every day. The pen doesn’t work at first, but eventually there’s a signature on my ball, and he hands it back to me as a few reporters start to approach him. I thank him very much, and head out of the hotel on my way. I didn’t get to shake his hand or anything, but I saw him in the flesh, got his autograph, and he liked my jacket, which is good enough for me.
I race over to my best friend at Marquette, calling literally everyone on my phone because I’m so excited. Later that night, I’m back on Twitter and I’m pretty sure Carrie Muskat mentioned me in a tweet: “There’s a guy in
#Cubs jacket in hotel lobby”, which was posted right around 5pm when I was at the hotel and not another logo was in sight. Now, the ball rests on my bookshelf, waiting for its own container.
It was truly incredible – you can obviously tell how excited I am that it all happened to work out. Thanks to Brett and the commenters at Bleacher Nation, and thanks to Theo for signing my ball!