H is for Home Run Derby

H is for the Home Run Derby. The Home Run Derby and All Star Game are a summertime favorite for our oldest son. He typically spends the time leading up to these two events speculating which players will make the rosters and then trading his baseball cards to secure them in his collection. His chatter about the players and their stats have broadened my baseball knowledge from the Red Sox players to other big names in baseball. Go ahead, ask me who Andrew McCutchen plays for – I can tell you!

From the moment we arrived at my parents summer camp, our son has been busily trading cards with the neighbor. The rest of the kids are swimming and tubing but not our son. He’s all business. His second preoccupation has been securing a location to watch the games since my parent’s camp doesn’t have cable. We can watch it via internet but he doesn’t know that, and it’s fun to see him sweat it out. “Call Uncle Ned.  I’m sure he’ll be watching the game. He’d be happy to have you over. Go ahead give him a call.” How badly did he want to watch the game? Would he make the call to his Great Uncle Ned?

Little did he know that he wouldn’t have to make the call. Not just because we’d be watching it here, but because he would actually be going to Minneapolis to watch it in person. He and his dad would be joining my husband’s longtime friend and his son. And while the boys will have the experience to watch the All Star Game, the boys will have the opportunity to catch the fly balls in the outfield during the Home Run Derby. Their dads will be watching from the stands and the rest of us will be watching from home, hoping to catch a glimpse of them while they’re hoping to catch a ball. Uncle Ned will be watching too!

They boarded the plane and were off on their adventure. I received the occasional text update with a photo and no surprise, they were having the time of their lives. I can only imagine what it must be like for these boys who live for baseball to be standing so close to such legendary players. My favorite photo was of the two boys in their new jerseys and hats. Go figure, our Massachusetts son chose the White Sox while his Chicago friend chose the Red Sox. I guess they were showing solidarity. At some point they’ll outgrow their special shirts, but the memories of this extraordinary experience will stay with them forever.

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