A major league baseball team batboy’s job is never done.
“I get here about three to four hours before the game starts,” explains Dominic Frost, 18, who just completed his second season as the Minnesota Twins batboy. “I’m setting up the bench… [I] bring in coolers and towels, gum, shoes and all that. That takes almost an hour to do.
“After that’s done, I usually shag balls in BP [batting practice] from 4 to 5 [pm],” continues Frost, who sometimes helps players warm up by playing short-throw catch with them. He even gets to sometimes match up with the Minnesota manager.
“He [Frost] and I have a knuckleball catch [contest],” notes Ron Gardenhire. “We go back and forth on who has the best knuckleball — he has a good one.”
“After that, it’s game time,” says Frost. Although he has the best seat in the house — the home team’s dugout — Frost rarely is in it.
“I’m just running around, a lot of running around the whole game,” admits the young man, “picking up [foul] balls and handing the umpire balls. At the end of the night, after the game, I usually clean everyone’s cleats, and that takes about an hour so they come out nice tomorrow for the next game. After that, I’m stacking coolers — I’m pretty much here about two hours after the game.
“It’s a long day,” says Frost.
When he got the Twins’ batboy job a year ago, Frost was a senior at Henry Sibley High School. “I was in school one day, and I got a call to the office,” he recalls. “I got down to the office and my baseball coach from the RBI program was standing in the office.”
Then Frost was offered the opportunity many young men who follows baseball dream about — to wear a real major league baseball uniform. He was asked, “How would you like to work for the Minnesota Twins as the batboy?”
Frost responded, “‘I’d love that.’ I actually got the call on my birthday that I got the job. I didn’t really know what to expect” in his rookie year, the now-veteran batboy says.
“He’s fantastic, a great smile on his face,” says Gardenhire on Frost. “Works hard. Great attitude. A lot of fun to have around.”
This sounds a future job recommendation. “He is going to do a lot of good things in this world,” surmises the manager.
Frost says that he plans to attend St. Paul College, then transfer to a school in Georgia next spring. “A lot of people tell me I could be a counselor,” he says. Coaching also could be in his future. Frost says he has done some Little League baseball as well as some umpiring. “I’m thinking about doing some more coaching in the future.”
Asked how he’s seen by the Twins players, Frost says, “They really appreciate [what he does] and show it. Denard Span is like a dad to me. Whenever I need something, he’s there and helps me out. A lot of the players are like that.”
“We have a good bunch of guys around here in the clubhouse,” notes Gardenhire. “I think all of our guys really appreciate all of the guys who work in here and take care of us. And if they don’t, I let them know about it.”
“It’s really nice to be around guys like this,” concludes Frost.
Span finished among several Twins players who hit over .300 in September, the final full month of the season, including a game-winning single Sept. 13, his second such hit of the season. He also recorded four four-hit games and a five-RBI game this season.
Did you know…?
Who led the Twins in stolen bases and doubles and had the team’s longest hit streak this season? (Answer in next week’s “View.”)
Answer to last week’s question: Besides her initial opposition to the landmark Title IX law, Shirley Chisholm also has another place in history. Name what it is.
Chisholm (1924-2005) not only was the first Black U.S. congresswoman, elected in 1969, and became one of the founding members of the Congressional Black Caucus; she also was the first Black woman to run for the Democratic presidential nomination, which she did in 1972.
Mrs. Chisholm served seven terms in Congress and left in 1983 to teach at Mount Holyoke College, where she was a popular lecturer.
Sisters ran W awards table
If Los Angeles first-year forward Nneka Ogwumike wins rookie of the year as expected, it will be a clean sweep as Blacks win the WNBA’s top individual awards for the second consecutive season: Ogwumike’s teammate Kristi Toliver (Most Improved), Tamika Catchings of Indiana (Defensive Player of the Year), and Connecticut teammates Renee Montgomery (Sixth Woman) and Tina Charles (Most Valuable).
In addition, all 10 players who made the 2012 WNBA All-Defensive Teams were Black.
See more WNBA news in this week’s “Sports Odds and Ends.”
Charles Hallman welcomes reader responses to firstname.lastname@example.org.