Great Day with a Brace of Rebels!

Al, Chris, and Austin outside the Braves clubhouse.

We made it to Lake Buena Vista today and visited with former New Market Rebels, Chris Masters (’07) and Blaine Sims (’10).  Both are southpaws and both are making their way through the Atlanta Braves system rather quickly. Our boys are working hard and look to be in great shape. They certainly have the mental toughness to go far. We spent 90 minutes watching them and other Braves hurlers work on fielding drills. (Yes, we can spend 90 minutes doing that because that’s the way we roll.)

Austin & Blaine.

Now, if you ever intend to watch the Braves minor leaguers work out, be advised that their camp is located in the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex  that is part of the Walt Disney World Resort. In other words, you are at the most corporate minor league facility in the world. You also may have to pay $15.50 to get in. I say “may” because we sure had no intention of paying, and rather than take the long way around the complex to see if there was a way to get in legitimately for free, we took the road behind the baseball fields on which was posted a sign that read, “No Unauthorized Vehicles.” Well, we didn’t have a vehicle, unauthorized or otherwise, so we walked up the road. A guy in a golf cart looked at us suspiciously, but since we had on matching Rebel hats, he must have figured that we left our authorized vehicle out in the parking lot. We then came to a bullpen gate that was open and there was no sign that said, “Do not enter.”  So, we entered. We also found a baseball taking this route.

Now, what did Al and I learn from our adventure? We learned this: Don’t take your wives on a Spring Training sojourn if you might be sneaking into a ballpark. Ours interpret signs broadly and would have kept us from going down the “No Unauthorized Vehicle” road in the first place, whereas clearly these signs needed to be taken literally.

Tomorrow, we spend the night with high school friends in Jacksonville and then we start the journey for home. Please make sure that it’s warm when we get there.

About Austin Gisriel

You know the guy that records a baseball game from the West Coast in July and doesn't watch it until January just to see baseball in the winter? That's me. I'm a writer always in search of a good story, baseball or otherwise.
This entry was posted in Spring Training Trip 2012 and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Great Day with a Brace of Rebels!

  1. Charlie says:

    Melissa said she would have mentioned that you may get in trouble.(mentioned it? Yes, just so I could fall back on the “I told you so” argument if we got caught! M~)
    I, on the other hand, would have never even seen that sign. What sign?! I once went in the kitchen door of an establishment that had a long line to get it. Just act like you belong there and keep moving. I think you guys handled that the right way. $15 to get in … HA


  2. Don Hoover says:

    Just wanted to mention that my brother Bob & I go to see the Frederick Keys & Bowie Baysox during the summer. I know your schedule is busy, but would love to have you hook up with us if possible. Will contact you when we plan to go, & see if you could join us. Have a great summer.


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