Life of a Minor Leaguer : Waiting on "the call"
Eyewitness Sports Reporter
Endless bus rides, cheap hotels, sub par paychecks. The life of a minor league baseball player is not for the faint of heart. The majority of players get lost in the masses, while few get "the call." Everyone is just as hungry. The Chattanooga Lookouts are no different.
"That's why we play this game, to play in the big leagues, you don't want to, you're wasting your time. Why come down here go through the grind play in Chattanooga in the 112 degree heat when you don't wanna play in the big leagues," said first baseman Corey Smith.
Why ride the bus when you can take a plane. Maybe no one is hungrier than third year Lookout Corey Smith who turns 29 this month.
Smith led the team with 86 RBI's in 2010, he's coming off one of his best spring seasons with the Dodgers, he says he opened some eyes on the big league level, now it's all about consistency.
"You gotta go out give it all you got, win or lose. If you go out and compete, play hard, you're going to put yourself in a position to win a ball game."
Like any team sport individual success leads to the teams success. In the minors that often leads to promotions.
Top pitching prospects Javy Guerra and Chris Withrow say you have to avoid tunnel vision, you can't afford to focus only on getting that call.
"If you do that you're going to catch yourself missing the big objective, which is coming out here and pitching well which will evidently take you where you need to go," said Guerra.
Withrow added, "when it comes down to getting the call up it's individual, but our goal is to win a championship at whatever level you're at."
The Lookouts know a bit about promotions. Last season, Treyvon Robinson, Dee Gordon, and Jerry Sands all were called up to at least AAA ball. Robinson is currently on the 40 man roster.
Second year manager Carlos Subero, says watching it all pay off is exactly why he does what he does, "it's exciting, just to see that face getting the good news. See that expression, almost all the first thing they do is call the family and share the news, it's a great moment"