Interns Take in Hall of Fame

by: Gabe Cassillo

The 2012 Tri-City ValleyCats interns enjoyed a well-deserved off day on Wednesday and were fortunate enough to take a road trip to Cooperstown and the National Baseball Hall of Fame. All were smiling as they made the drive to visit the Mecca of Baseball history and were treated to lunch with the the Frank and Peggy Steele interns.

First up on the agenda was a brief time of introductions. Everyone gave a bit of background and spoke about future goals. The HOF interns spoke about their experiences and roles over the past few weeks.

After introductions, the “red shirts” moved to the Learning Center to take in a presentation of the Hall of Fame’s “artifact spotlight.” Structured in story form, one of the Steele interns spoke about the changes to baseball’s playoff system. Originally the regular-season winner from both the NL and AL would play each other. Eventually each league added divisions, and then more recently, the Wild Card team was created. This past year, and this Fall, the newest system will commence with two wild cards in each league playing in a one-game series. The specific artifacts that illustrated this history were Troy Glaus’ 2002 jersey (this was the first World Series between two wild card teams) and a cartoon from Minesota that illustrated the frustration of fans when their first-place Twins were swept in a four-game series by the Eastern division champion Orioles.

Following the spotlight was lunch and a time to talk with and get to know some of the “blue shirts.” Many of the Steele interns interestingly came from various parts of the country including Colorado, Minnesota, and Florida.

Next up on the day was a live video call to the Louisville Slugger Factory and Museum. All were treated to a virtual presentation about the famed Louisville slugger and the history of the company. The presentation was complemented by live visual aides (various bats) that were passed around during the presentation. It was amazing to see the Louisville Factory up close in person all the way from Cooperstown!

After the presentation, the interns were free to take in the various exhibits and HOF plaques across the three floors of the Museum. One of the most popular exhibits had to be the display case of every World Series ring. Also of interest were various Colt .45’s/Houston Astros artifacts, but who could forget the awesome Hank Aaron exhibit made possible in part by the ValleyCats own, Bill and Millie Gladstone.

All in all, it was a great day in Cooperstown, NY. It was a great way to appreciate America’s pastime and the history of the game that we could very easily take for granted. Everyone came away from the trip with a great re-appreciation of what a privilege it is be a part of the world’s greatest game.

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