Good guy awards
I was at the last week of spring training in Sarasota and saw the Yankees and Pirates games. I took my 2 boys (9 and 7) to get some autographs after the game with the Yanks. We lined up with about a dozen other people at the exit of the players parking lot.
Many players drove out with windows rolled up, talking on cell phones (or pretending to be on cell phones) and didn't even wave. These included EE, Homer, Volquez, and some others I didn't recognize. Marty was on the cell phone but at least waved. Brandon rolled his window down and said he couldn't sign because he had to get to the airport (there were only 15 of us including 3 little kids, 4 teens and one boy in a wheel chair). I saw him ignore requests Thursday at the game too. Didn't see Votto or Harang leaving.
The good guy awards go to Jerry Hairston, Micah, Adam Rosales, Kepp, Dickerson, Bray, Bruce, Darnell, and some others I'm probably forgetting. A couple notable stories: Hairston was one of the first to stop his car. He was also on the cell phone but stopped and excused himself from the call and signed a few through his car window. Then he got out of the car and posed for a picture with the boy in the wheel chair and signed a few more before leaving. I have new appreciation for him. Jerry, you're a good guy. Micah and Adam were climbing into a car near the exit and one in our little group called over to them. They got back out of the car and walked around the fence and stood with us signing and talking. Bruce, Bray, Dickerson, McDonald and others all signed from their car windows and made sure to sign every autograph. Keppinger was seen driving into the lot (I now know that he had been summoned to the office to speak with Dusty about being traded). Someone in our group yelled, "hey Kepp, we'll catch you on the way out". Sure enough Kepp stopped 20 minutes later on his way out of the lot and signed, but he told us "you know I'm not with the Reds anymore". We told him good luck in Houston and that we'd be pulling for him. So even though he had just been told he was traded minutes earlier he stopped and was gracious with us.
At Thursday's Pirates game I witnessed Eric Davis, Dusty, and Weathers signing on the field. And EE signed a few in the handicapped section. Micah came over to the handicapped section too. And Adam Rosales signed again. Arroyo stopped and signed about 3 balls and then left explaining to the other half dozen people "I have carpal tunnel bad". A couple people later said yeah right. Turns out he does!! He shouldn't have signed those 3 balls to begin with, but he was a good guy.
All in all it was great to be there. Fun for the kids to interact with the players. But interesting to see who's selfish with their time and who isn't. Maybe we caught some of them on a bad day and I'm sure it gets old trying to honor all the requests. But I just don't think some of them realize how great they have it and how thankful they should be for the fans.
Re: Good guy awards
I went to the Fri game here in NC, and was disgusted by the way the majority of the players reacted to the fans, worst I have ever seen outside of a team that just won a world championship and had too many requests to try. The good guy award I would have gave out that night would have been Danny Herrera first-he went out of his way to sign, spilled his drink on his glove taking items, jumped over the fence to recover a ball a kid dropped, etc, signed all autos, and was nice. Dusty signed for all. BPhil rushed to the field, but acknolwedged the fans and said he would be back-even though he wasnt able to by game time starting. I saw Jerry signing for many, but was gone by time I made it to front of rush. Those were onyl signings I saw. The rest of the players were attrocious, either ignoring fans altogether, or looking at them with big F-U's to those that asked. Eric Davis was a jerk-I was excited to se ehim standing in the dugout-I was 3 seats away form him, and tried to talk to him, explaining he was my hero growing up, loved his swing, the 90's series, and asked if he would sign my program for me-to which he replied with "I am not doing that for you man". I think afew fans around saw htat interaction and atalked about it-with one lady feeling bad for me and talking how they shouldnt have even come to a minor league park if they wer goign to be jerks to fans, and think he overheard it. After the game, when he was walking with the team down the line, I yelled out asking if I could try again for an auto, and he came over and tried to cover up by saying he never said that, that I didn't stick around to hear wha the said-uhm, yes I did, I sat there for a moment with my jaw dropped after being shot down by a now former favorite player and hero. Johnny Bench, my alltime hero, was jsut as rude a few years back, so looks like I need to pick my Reds heros better.
Re: Good guy awards
I will say Eric Davis was great the 2 days I saw him in Sarasota with autographs. Maybe a bad day for him.