On Friday, Chandra invited me to go to a season ticket holder event at the Ted on Saturday afternoon, where we had the opportunity to hear Frank Wren speak for a little while and meet the players who have been in town for Rookie Development Week. The AJC has been reporting a little of what's been going on, and here's a list of the full roster of players who were in attendance. Her sister Crista came too, and they had an extra ticket last minute so my bud Alison got to come with us. It was a very fun few hours for a big Braves fan!
Most of the things Wren spoke about wasn't new information to those of us who keep up with Braves news, but my favorite behind-the-scenes story we heard was that when BMac was a rookie, every day Chipper "forgot" his dip in his truck and made BMac go out and get it for him. And BMac did it, every day. Wren said Chipper didn't ever forget his dip... he was just keeping Mac in his place. Ha, typical.
Each of the players were introduced individually, we all applauded appropriately, then a few of the players answered questions from the audience. We were divided into groups for autographs, and while I'm not big on the lines, we all did think it would be fun to go through and speak with the guys.
As usual at these events, only about 1/2 actually looked up and talked; the rest were in auto-scribble mode. Alison made a good point, that a handful probably didn't have the best English skills, but some tried! Todd Cunningham loved talking about meeting Chipper that day -- there was real hero worship in his eyes and voice, and I humored him. Some of the guys were just glowy talking about their week. Two boys -- and I wish we could remember their names, but we can't! They were so cute. I asked one if he was having a good week as a greeting, and he said, "yes ma'am," and his adorable seat neighbor at the table cracked up laughing at my astonished face and goes, "You just got ma'am'ed!!" [ETA: After accidentally stumbling on his face in a G-Braves video from last year I figured out this was pitcher Cory Gearrin.] I laughed at that and we exchanged "how old do you think I am?!" and "where are you from?!" (Virginia) and he ended up guessing Alison and I were 22. Alison said, "That's good," and I replied, "Calling anyone over 18 in the South ma'am isn't that bad, I was just giving you a hard time." They were fun.
You'll notice on the bumper stickers below that a couple of the autographs are duplicates... at the first table, Myke Jones was about halfway down the table and he had a stack of red stickers in front of him. Alison and I had met Myke at the Hawks game the night before, so we teased him a little about wanting a red sticker instead of a blue one. He humored us, so there are a few dupe autographs as they slid the bumper stickers down the table as we talked. (Like I said, the guys sometimes just go into auto-mode.)
Alison and I also met Kyle Rose on Friday night, and as I slid a new bumper sticker in front of him on Saturday, I joked, "you're not even going to look up, say hi?" He laughed and stood up to hug us hello. He was a sweetie -- we told him to hurry up to the majors so we can cheer him on every day.
Here are the autographed bumper stickers -- we even met the big names, like Julio Teheran. Thanks again for the invite, Chandra!