With the Kernels – Day Three

Hank Conger told FutureAngels.com the back story to his presidential campaign video.

Not much time to write, as we have a noon game today against Clinton. If the weather cooperates. Right now a light shower is falling. The forecast has the rain tapering off by early afternoon, but Midwest weather is so unstable you really can’t make a certain prediction what will happen.

Lanny Peterson, who runs the Kernels host parent program, was gracious enough to take me to breakfast today. Tom Pumroy joined us. Tom and his wife Abby have been host parents for years. Because Abby speaks Spanish, they usually host the Latin players who are assigned to Cedar Rapids.

Lanny and Tom told me about their trip to the Angels’ academy in the Dominican Republic. Prospect pitcher Rafael Rodriguez escorted them around town. They confirmed what we’ve heard so often about the impoverished conditions in the Dominican. If the players fail, they go back to a life of picking sugar cane or cleaning fish. And you thought you had pressure at work.

I recorded interviews yesterday with Kernels manager Ever Magallanes, catcher Hank Conger and Clinton LumberKings broadcaster Dave Lezotte. Hopefully I’ll record more interviews today. Conger’s interview is already on the home page at www.futureangels.com. For those of you who’ve heard about Hank’s YouTube video, I finally got the straight story on its origins. Hank’s dad and grandfather showed up mid-game and were welcomed by the P.A. announcer.

Depending on how the stars align, I might do the pre-game show or some color on the Kernels broadcast today with John Rodgers. John is an endless well of optimism and good cheer. He’s a refreshing change from the snide and cynical commentary you read on certain web sites and hear on certain sports radio shows. If only more people were like John … well, the world would be a better place.

I go straight from the ballpark to the airport, and don’t arrive home in O.C. until 10:30 PM PDT, so look for the next blog in the morning.


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