LAS VEGAS, NV- I can remember being drafted by the Cincinnati Reds in 1982 as a small second baseman out of Franklin High School in Los Angeles, CA. who just led the city in hitting and built a solid reputation as one of LA's greatest hitters ever. Its an honor I carry with me proudly. That's really not why I am writing this article. This article is the initial shock of each guy that showed up in Manager Jim Hoff's office of the Tampa Tarpons class A league. Just to share, I can remember the great Dodger Wally Moon walking in with that one long respectful eyebrow, and saying "so you youngsters think you know Baseball who wants the challenge?" Well I was up for it as a baseball addict so I stood up proudly before Moon hit me with a barrage of Baseball Questions that I could'nt answer!!! Something like this...
1.Rich what size is the batters box?
2.Rich How thick is the chalk line in major League baseball?
3.How big is the screen on the foulpole?
4.What size is the pitchers rubber?
5.At what point is Pine tar illegal?
6.How wide is the dirt cutout going to first and leading from third?
7.What are the dimensions of Home plate?
8.How far is the rubber to homeplate?
9.Whats the difference between a suicide squeeze and a safety squeeze?
10.What is the rule on clete length?
11. What are the dimensions of the bases?
Well to say the least I only knew a few of these and Moon tore me up...All in good natured learning of course, but it quickly made me realize to be a student of the game which I thought I was at that point, you really should know these answers. He said "How on earth can you fall in love with a game when you dont even know her..."
Great point by the great Dodger and Cardinal star Wally Moon and one I'll never forget...Just something to pass along to all you Baseball officianados and future stars.
At 18 I couldnt answer them, by the end of that day I knew it well...Thanks Wally Moon, you made me a real student of the game I love and now I pass it on to everyone when I can.