Sunday, August 2, 2015

Walk Off Story

I've written many times about my love of a good story. I love to hear how details work together to create unique moments. I want to see tales of triumph, compassion, and genuine human emotion. This is one of the reasons I love sports. It's not just to see great athletic feats and the power of a team coming together, but also to witness the stories that flow from competition, sacrifice, and loyalty.

This week my beloved NY Mets were active in trade talks as we are positioned to make a playoff run for the first time in several years. One of our players, Wilmer Flores, was part of a trade which was reported to be completed on Wednesday night. With social media leading the charge the fans in the stands of the game knew about it before the players on the field. As word quickly spread to the dugout of Wilmer's impending trade, he became emotional as he realized he was leaving the only team he had been part of during his professional career. His tears were captured by the cameras and quickly became a focal point of sports shows that evening. All of this soon changed however as the trade fell through and he remained a Met.

Two days later Wilmer received a standing ovation from the Mets fans when he came to bat. They were showing their appreciation for an athlete who clearly loved playing for his home team. While everyone was enjoying the feel-good moment for a homegrown player, no one could have anticipated the conclusion to these three days. Locked in a tie ballgame against the first place team, the Mets won when Wilmer hit a walk-off home run in extra innings. While writers and journalists tried to capture the emotion of the moment there is no real way to encapsulate the range of emotions this young man felt over three days. His joy and sorrow were as palpable and genuine as the obvious love shared between teammates and fans.

This is a great reminder of the power of a story and how sometimes life is better than anything we could come up with on our own. These are found in places all around us if we're willing to look for them.

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