Click-clack - my cleats tap on the concrete in the dugout and as my steps begin to turn into swift movements of speed and agility I burst out from the dugout into the late afternoon sun as the heat beats down on me. It’s humid, muggy, and you almost get the feeling that you will have trouble breathing when you step out into the sun. As the hot sun begins to set behind the trees; behind the ballpark the two teams take the field to embark on athletic battle. As I run out onto the diamond the sun has set and the bright stadium lights shine like a disco ball in a dance club. As the cheers from the crowd get louder and louder everything gets more and more intense. A feeling sets over me as if I had to put everything on the line it would be on this day at this hour. As we head in to the dugout, our bodies and minds are tired and warn because of this hot summer night. The stage is drawn, the game wears on and I have come up to the plate. The bat sits in my hands loosely and is raised just above my shoulder. As the pitcher begins his tedious wind up as if he were on an assembly line doing the same thing over and over again. He raises his leg and lunges forward starting a very strenuous motion of his arm. I slightly bend my knees as if I am a tiger preparing to attack. I take a soft yet powerful step forward, then thrust and turn my hips pulling the bat along with the rest of my body, as I look down the barrel of the bat I see the ball connect and fly of my bat as if it were shot out of a cannon. Now I begin my journey around the bases as I approach first base, the cheers get louder and a look of excitement comes upon my coaches’ face, I touch the base ever so lightly as coach says, “touch ‘em all”. I round second to see my teammates running and jumping with excitement from the dugout. I pass all the opposing players, looks of disgust on their faces. I reach third to greeted by a smiling coach, who looks at me as if I was his own son and taps me on the butt with pride. I arrive at home plate where my journey began; I jump high in the air, and land with a feeling like no other, success.
March 7, 2008