Just got off the phone with Sports Illustrated. Someone there saw my blog, discovered that I’m approaching my 400th consecutive game with at least one ball caught, and decided to track me down.
I love how this stuff happens.
Even after all the interviews and articles about my collection, I’m still a bit stunned whenever someone actually wants me to talk about it. It all started innocently on June 20, 1990 when two Mets pitchers tossed me balls during batting practice at Shea Stadium. I had no idea what I was getting into. I was 12. I was psyched. That was about it. A couple months later, I convinced my parents to take me to BP again, and I caught two more balls. The following season, I raised my lifetime ball total to 18 and in 1992, I got permission to ride the subway to games by myself. That’s when my collection took off (and when I started getting ridiculed by just about everyone at school). I wasn’t trying to get famous. I didn’t have a book in mind. I just loved baseball. So yeah, it’s pretty cool when anyone–media or otherwise–wants to talk about it.
As for S.I., I’m not sure what they’re planning, but I’ve been told that it’s not going to be the cover story. Still, they asked for some photos…and various streak-related stats.
“Is there any chance that the streak could end before you reach 400?” asked the writer.
“Doubtful,” I told him, explaining that I’m working on a current 24-game streak with four or more balls, and that I’m almost twice as likely to get ten balls at a game than only one.
He wanted to know how many balls I’ve caught since the streak began.
(It began on September 10, 1993 and now stands at 396 games.)
I had to do a little math for that one.
The answer: 2,210
That means I’ve averaged 5.58 balls per game.
I sent him all kinds of crazy stats and asked him to include a link to the blog. Let’s see if it happens. I tend not to believe these things until I can talk about them in the past tense. Hopefully, I’ll get to do it soon; the next issue comes out on Wednesday.
By the way, yesterday’s radio interview was all right. Not outstanding. Certainly not a disaster. I posted a few comments about it under the previous entry.