I received the baseball mitt on the left in second grade. It was way too big for me then, in 1976. It’s a Bob Grich playmaker model, and I loved it. I played with it through middle school; it came with me for intramural softball in college and seminary in the ’80s and ’90s, and church league softball in the ’00s. Its latest endeavor is to accompany me as the Little League coach for my oldest son.
This will be the fourth summer that I’ll coach Little League, and I knew that one thing needed to change. I needed a new mitt. As much as it pains me to retire my beloved Rawlings, it is simply too old to continue its decades-long service to me. The leather is threadbare and torn, and no amount of oil can resuscitate it.
And so, I bought a new mitt last week.
I’m sure that the Louisville Slugger Omaha Flare will serve me well, but it will never be the Rawlings. That’s okay. I have no remorse about it, but it is change.
Speaking of change…