I MIZ College Baseball
I know I said this blog is about my experience in MiLB, but who would I be if I didn’t share every baseball thought that comes to mind and lingers there for a while?
This one is going to be a rant about how much I, a very proud Mizzou graduate, longs to spend another night under the Taylor Stadium lights. I miss the February games that consisted of low temperatures and piercing winds that sent me home with a slightly pink nose that slowly but surely turned into a warm and sunny spring.
I think I really should have titled this one: Thoughts from a Has-Been Diamond Crew girl.
Yes, I was one of “those girls” (as some referred to us) who threw T-Shirts at the crowd and ran around the ballpark in sparkly black and gold outfits. Did I spend too much money on the clothes? Yes. Did I fall flat on my face while dancing on the dugout? Occasionally. But, during the season Taylor Stadium practically became my home to the point where the coaches probably could have charged me rent, and I wouldn’t have wanted to spend my weekends any other way.
As someone who only grew up watching the Red Sox, baseball in the SEC was completely unfamiliar to me. My first time watching the Tigers in action is something I will never forget because I witnessed a part of the sport my brain had never processed before, and my mind was completely in awe. I was a freshman, and after the conclusion of the first inning, a million questions ran through my head…
“How does that player not swing out of his shoes?”
“Does that catcher's hand hurt after each pitch, does it sting?”
Clearly after asking those questions aloud, it was apparent that I was the only one in the stands completely thrown off guard.
Through the next three years my involvement with the baseball program and knowledge of the game improved drastically. I was now invested in researching all things college baseball from draft predictions (huge M-I-Z to Tanner Houck, and Tanner Houck only) to statistics and team rankings.
While most of my nights were spread between sitting next to the home dugout to retrieve bats or performing the classic Missouri Waltz in front of fans, I also had the privilege of watching the game from the press box’s birds eye view (while enjoying a hot dog and Cherry Coke of course) helping as a communications assistant for Mizzou Athletics.
My heart has always desired to be in the press box. I have known since I was little that watching the game behind a long piece of glass, dressed business casual with a freshly minted press pass is how I want to spend my time at the ballpark. However, I am beginning to realize a big part of me misses eagerly greeting fans with a big smile as they enter the gates, and hyping up the crowd during the seventh inning stretch.
Diamond Crew gave me more than just cute outfits; it provided me with the opportunity to meet the sweetest girls who love the sport just as much as I do. Not to mention a confidence boost, because you can only trip over your own feet in front of an audience so many times that you learn to just brush it off and keep going.
And for those wondering, yes, I still wear all the outfits.