There are a lot of people who influenced me, nurtured me, helped me along the way. But I can just recall looking back, the first time I got my baseball glove. Put it on the wrong hand, all those kind of things.
You know, heroes are ordinary people that have achieved extraordinary things in life.
Everyone has a breaking point, turning point, stress point, the game is permeated with it. The fans don't see it because we make it look so efficient. But internally, for a guy to be successful, you have to be like a clock spring, wound but not loose at the same time.
I never had to cheat, I get them with what I got.
The Yankees won the pennant, we went on to the World Series, 41 years after that in the city of Toronto. The great city of Toronto, and all the provinces in Canada, everybody reached out and they were excited because we won the first World Series ever, across the border.
You have to go understand that life and baseball is littered with all kinds of obstacles and problems along the way. You have to learn how to overcome them to be successful in life.
To the people out there, baseball is a simple sport. But it is complex. It is never easy.
These days baseball is different. You come to spring training, you get your legs ready, you arms loose, your agents ready, your lawyer lined up.
All though I didn't meet him. His legend and his saga and his story is just that. Jackie Robinson, we all have to tip our hat to him. Because he made the game available to guys like me.
To give you an idea what it feels like to be going in with some of the best baseball players of all-time, I mean it is fantastic. I have to say this about them, there are so many of these guys up here that were my role models, people I looked up to, people I wanted to be like.
The people like the American Legion Post that gave us a chance to play. A place to play and a chance to play.
I chose baseball because to me baseball is the best game of all.
You have to be like a clock spring, wound but not loose at the same time.
And I found out, the other part of it is that I found out and in my desire to life successfully, that baseball fit very well into my life. It's been a great teacher, trainer, mentor and you'll see what I mean in the next few minutes that I have to speak.
But I'll tell you this, it started with my mother. I have to give her. God bless her and rest her soul. I had a good foundation at home, so when I was able to go off and do these things in baseball there was always support.
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