Holy canoles Batman! This is the time of year I keep wondering "Where the heck did the off season go???" Of course I had a super fun off season, and traveled the world. Well at least parts of it. I spent ten days touring the countryside of Japan while watching minor league baseball games, and I spent ten days down under in New Zealand taking in the sights! It was amazing!
I needed all of that vacation time, because in February alone, everyone’s favorite sea dog has been at over 35 events! I toured with the Rays players for our annual Caravan. We paid visits to the St. Petersburg and Tampa area as well as trekking down to Manatee county. After Caravan, I’ve been slammed with Little League openings. By the time the season starts, I’ll have visited 18 little leagues! How do I get to all of those places at once? Magic. I’m more magical than the kingdom. I put Harry Potter to shame.
Between all of this action I got to have a little fun. My buddy Wally the Green Monster was in state doing some appearances at Ft. Myers. He made the drive up to Tampa so we could watch the Lightning take on the Bruins. Bruins won. Wally was happy. I wasn’t. Niether one of us stayed out too late because we both had to get up at 7am to work. I had a little league opening and then Fan Fest.
Fan fest was amazing! We had a record crowd. I spent over 4 hours mingling with the Tampa Bay faithful. Fans lined up for hours to get autographs from their favorite players, and of course, me. In addition to autographs we had the world’s largest baseball, the largest collection of baseball autographs, and world champion hotdog eater Takeru Kobayashi. Personally I think I could out eat that guy, but when I gestured as such he just laughed and threatened to eat me.
Right after fan fest I got an urgent call from Stuff, the Orlando Magic’s mascot. He needed me to come out to his party on Sunday because one of his NBA buddies was snowed in and couldn’t make the trip. So I hopped in my car and made the drive along I-4 to make it. His other guests were Benny from the Chicago Bulls, The Raptor from Toronto, Rocky from the Denver Nuggets, and Clutch of the Houston Rockets. It was insanity!! During the first quarter break, we did a dunking exhibition. Well, THEY dunked. I just ran off in fear! I’m very happy with my fat self on the ground! MLB mascots weren’t meant to fly with clouds between their knees! For half time we had a …get this…roller derby musical chairs competition! We mascots had to skate around the court, and when the music stopped, find a chair. I got out pretty fast as Clutch was cheating the whole time! I am so glad I am a baseball mascot! I think I would be one big bruise if I had to pull off the stunts that those NBA guys carry out! And speaking of bruises, poor Stuff suffered a concusion during the game last night while trying a human bowling ball stunt. He’s expected to make a full recovery, but please root for him to get well!
AND IF ALL OF THIS WASN’T ENOUGH, spring training has started! We started off in style with a sold out crowd last Friday that saw up take on the New York Yankees. So far we’ve faced the Jays, Twins, and Reds with the Indians in town tomorrow. It’s always nice to play a few games in the great out doors. There’s nothing quite like the view of the water at Progress Energy park.
Well, hope you enjoyed my latest entry. It was jam packed with excitement and action…just like Devil Rays baseball!