The game of baseball has occupied a special spot in my heart since an early age. The game was first introduced to me by my father-figure, Uncle Joe. I’m not quite sure how old I was when he started talking to me about it, but I do remember being at my first game with him at Fenway Park. It was loud with a lot of people … that’s what I remember.
Uncle Joe had grown up in a time when baseball players didn’t make a whole lot of money, so when the Boston Braves came calling, he decided to go to work for the family instead.
A second baseman when he played, standing at 5’7”, I really couldn’t see Uncle Joe as a power hitter. But according to him, he hit the farthest home run ever … at 130 miles!! The story goes that once when he and his friends were playing at a baseball field near a train track, Uncle Joe hit a ball over the fence and onto a passing train. The next day, as the train came back, it stopped and off jumped a guy (conductor, I suppose) who showed them the ball that Uncle Joe had hit the day before. The train had traveled to Portland, ME and back!
If Uncle Joe was alive today, that is exactly how he would tell the story … as straight-faced and convincing as the day it happened!