In this day and age of multi-million dollar salaries, sometimes we can’t blame professional sports franchises from looking at monetary reason to “hold in the reigns”. That’s why it is better if sometimes the guys between the white lines make the ultimate determination on what to do.
Now, I realize that it was just Spring Training, but what Terry Francona and Brad Mills, managers of the Boston Red Sox and Houston Astros respectively, did deserves a “high five’ or a “big thumbs up” or maybe, on this St. Patrick’s Day, a toast with a good pint of Guinness.
On Tuesday, the Sawx and Stros met in Kissimmee, FL for your normal run of the mill Spring Training game. What wasn’t normal was allowing a father and son, who haven’t seen much of each other over the last decade, to share a special moment… actually about three hours of them.
Boston 1st Base Coach Ron Johnson moved over to 3rd Base for the day, while his son, Astros prospect Chris Johnson, played 3rd Base. I can imagine the conversations.
Chris… “Dad, I need the keys to the car tonight and can I borrow $20?”
R.J…. “You were a 4th Round Pick… hang with’em”
Having worked with “R.J” for a couple of seasons in Trenton, I know how special the day was for him. R.J. is the true baseball lifer, with his signature 44 oz. coffee mug in tow.
I kid you not.
The man drinks enough coffee to cover the pond at Boston Commons… ten times over.
When you are a broadcaster in baseball, you have to earn the respect and trust of the Manager right from the start. R.J. made it very easy for me to do my job and I appreciate it.
But give more kudos to Terry Francona and Brad Mills for making this meeting take place.
Baseball does actually lend itself to these types of moments from time to time. And this was a good one.