EP73 The Story Behind Dear Baseball Gods the Book
Hey what's up this is. Dan Blew it. And we are back here with another episode. Your baseball God's this week I do not have guessed I have another one. I'm actually recording with tomorrow. I've known one after that so I've been enjoying the guests but this week we are going a little bit off script because i WanNa talk about not really just so much the book but I WanNa talk about the point of this podcast. The point of the last twenty two years of my life all that sort of stuff that is what's going into this final product within these covers. So if you don't know dear baseball gods. The podcast was started back closing on two years and the original intent was to share stories from my career. That might be impactful to someone over time. It sort of evolved. So the podcasts initially was a lot of stories from me I Lotta guests from teammates sharing their story overtime and evolved into more monologues talking about pitching specific topics so things you might WanNa learn as a parent or or players coach all that sort of stuff. You No more instructional how to kind of things and then. Recently I got back into doing guests. I really enjoyed it and I've also realized over time how challenging is just to have monologue so regularly where I have legitimate content to put out of the forty five minutes? A sixty minute. You know the the podcast sort of length. Obviously a PODCAST GONNA be any sort of duration we want. I know for example. There's a guy called Nelson who organizes the Illinois High School Baseball Coaches Association. He Does Cornerstone Coaching Academy which is ten twelve minutes. It's a little quick snippets for coaches of things that he does that he thinks to be valuable for someone else like tips and little current topics in in baseball coaching. So obviously there's no wrong way to do it and it can all be your thing. I've really enjoyed the podcast called. It's Micros podcast. Called the way I heard it and he writes these stories of being sixty eight minutes plus a little bit of advertising time before. But they're twelve minute episodes and that's kind of that so anyway. This is evolved over time but originally the point was to share a lot of things that I learned along the way in more like a story form. Now that again is evolved and that sort of the reason I have my blog now so as I've looked at different forms of content and ways I can connect with people and reach people. One of the big demographics that I wanNA reach our kids kids who are GonNa go through the things that I went through in their own way and so sure. Podcasting is a great format. I think it's really more of like the parent format but uh to reach the kids on Youtube and on instagram. A shorter form video based thing was I think my my solution to a high school middle school demographic and of course college as well so over time the stories that I wrote in my book. I'm like Do I want to translate these into podcast land or do I want to translate them into video form and as got my feet wet in video forms of your own my email lists you hear from me once a week. Sometimes twice I share mine. Yuv Logs were are you on episode. Three will come out next week. And I've been explaining a little bit about why I'm doing this flog and as I jumped into it and bought more camera equipment bought more of the Audio and technical devices that I need to do it. Well you can see here. This is a brand new Mike. That probably sounds significantly better. So if you're listening via the PODCAST KNOB YOUTUBE. Of course the audience the same on both those channels but you're listening only through the audio version. You'll hear probably that. My voice sounds better than it used to. And that's because I have this Mike. That costs four hundred dollars instead of ninety nine dollars. So not that. There's anything wrong. I think my podcasts of sound. Good in the past. We have decent. Mike's but this is like a next level Mike and the reason I actually bought this. Mike is because I'll be doing the audiobook version of my book fairly soon. So my goal is again to put up the the highest quality piece of content within my power and my budget and all that other stuff so it can reach more people because I know that if something is easy to listen to as opposed to harsh. It's easy to watch as opposed to low quality. More people are going to give it a chance and then hopefully connect with them in the way that I that I wanted to. So as I've gone through all these different mediums. I've sort of started to put them in their own compartmentalized place where the podcast is evolving into a place where other people can share their long form stories. So I have a guest tomorrow Jimmy Gonzalez. Who's the coach of the South? Bend Silver Hawks. That's a cubs single a affiliate. He's GonNa come on the show. He'll be the week after this airs. And so it's great to hear other people's perspective in journey. I'm only my own version of a coach right. I'm sort of a low energy guy. I'm not a huge Rah. Rah Kinda guy and it's great to just hear different messages from different people. You might hear the same thing that I say from a different person and it connects with you better just like parents who played high level baseball. Bring their kids to my academy simply sometimes because they say you know my son or my daughter tunes me out Even though they definitely know they talked about and they have a lot of knowledge and wisdom to share with their own kids. It just depends on the message in the format and all that stuff. So we're very aware of that. I'm very aware of that. And so the packaging is important so hearing it from other people is critical. I've actually really enjoyed meeting new. People recently of either podcast. There's a lot of great minds out there. I've been learning a lot. So it's it's I think finally taken its niche but this week I wanted to give a gap and Kinda talk about some of the things that I'm doing because a lots changing and now that the book is getting close to coming out. I'm really excited about it. I think it's all going to start to Mesh together. Well in the future. Where if you're interested in what I do and you're interested in learning about the journey that is high level sports. You know that that climb up the mountain. That's an analogy. I use over over my book. It's what you're in store for because it's it can be an amazing experience. It can be very heartbreaking experience and if you listen to some of my older episodes like episode thirteen where I explained the worst day of my career Which is also one of the worst in my life You know you know that it's never going to be easy. And it's often how we reframe bad situations and how we react to them and respond to them that makes them you know learning experiences or jeff just flat out defeats so one of these topics on one working on for episode five my blog and that is the peanut butter and Jelly. So when we look at things and this is one of the things I'm going to be doing in my blog is taking the everyday items that means something to me and explaining the story. That's behind them. So if you look at anything in your life the foods that you love the comfort foods that really does make you feel like warm and fuzzy when you're a kid because you made your mom made him or whatever Or the just the the the the paintings on your wall the reasons that we connect with certain objects and and experiences and events. They're very personal and they're always attached to a emotional story. So that's why I think stories so powerful when I do speak and I'm going to start getting back into speaking more Soon as book is done establishing an emotional connection with someone is critical and sharing a personal story that allows yourself to kind of put. Your you know be a little. Vulnerable is a really be part of the process. And so I as I look around as I've written this book. There's so many things that remind me of my journeys something so many things that were a little piece of it and I'll give you an example peanut butter and Jelly which is going to be episode. Five of the. You're my boy blue blog a blog a peanut butter and jelly. When I think of it I immediately taken back to two thousand ten when I was in my rookie season with normal when I was making six hundred dollars a month which was to fifty five ten per paycheck after taxes. And I just think back to the clubhouse how everyday you walk in two thirty you know you have to be on on the field at three thirty. Usually you walk in Ray to get your early work in get your you know get settled all that stuff and there's a table and there's a big loaf of bread to typically to a wheat bread and a loaf of white bread. There's a big jar like an industrial sized jar of Jelly typically grape. I mean almost without exception grape and then a big drum peanut butter and in the Frontier League. Which was the league that I played two dozen ten rookie season than two thousand twelve Evansville. The year I blew my water second time in that league. Obviously don't make any money right. Six hundred twelve hundred. I believe is still the Max. And you pay a dollar a day in clubhouse do so clubhouse dues you pay to the club and basically gives him money to wash your uniform to prepare food in the clubhouse which sometimes only pretty much. Pb AND J. And in general keep your clubhouse tidies the clubhouse attendant and the dues you pay him are basically his salary. He's paid meagerly by the team. If at all and he relies on your dues but in the frontier league the only a dollar a day every other league they're higher than that in the Atlantic League where I play my final three seasons. It was seven dollars a day. So significant bump up in fees. Let's twenty dollars for every homestand. Plus you WANNA tip them if they do a decent job but you also expect a little more from it. So seven dollars a day Gets you a little better post game spread of food? It gives you a little better pre-game foods it'll be more granola bars and Rahman Cup of noodles and and more fresh fruit and all that sort of stuff and then post game is usually see. Actually they've had decent somewhat catered meal or catered meal in the Atlantic League but in the frontier league peanut butter and Jelly for pre-game. That's literally the only food that set out there for you and then after the game you sometimes don't get fed probably thirty percent of games. You don't get fed which is really honestly terrible but sometimes they do feed you and it'll be pretty scrappy not great dinner. That's kind of the reality of that low level independent baseball life in the Frontier League as you go higher and leagues like the American Association. Where I play with Fargo. You get taken care of better. You also pay more in dues again. The Atlantic gets pretty expected that you have a legitimate meal after the game and pretty legitimate like kind of snacky food before the game and most guys bring a meal out. Eat a meal at two o'clock. It's got the ballpark. There's a Latin American restaurant right near the Ballpark in Camden. Were was literally called the Latin American restaurant but I'd grab chicken and rice and fried plantains from there all the Latin guys kind of turned us onto that and eat that go off for BP. Do all that stuff come back. Some snacks start the game. Coffee get me through the game and then post game meal what so when I think of. Pb AND J. I just think that first year was such a formative year for me. You know I was living my dream. I'll so excited. My arm was also killing me so I was struggling to get by both physically and financially. You know six dollars a month. Five five ten after taxes is nothing even though I had an amazing host family denny. Doherty Crawford here normal and if without them putting a roof over my head for free without having no car payment is this old crappy Honda Civic and without Danny enjoy also provided me a lot of food in. I mean I had a pretty full refrigerator. Every day I came home to it would have been really tough to scrap I. I was a little under water or even for that summer. Because I'm relatively frugal but peanut butter and Jelly eight one every day. If not to every day either before pre-game or before the game because they're just like wasn't another option you can't always run out to subway and spend seven bucks that's like half your day's meal money you fifteen dollars meal money now. League and so- peanut butter and Jelly was just the reality and so I ate probably between one hundred thirty and one hundred eighty peanut butter and jelly that summer I wouldn't say I got two two two a day but some days I would have. Three zero burned out but on average I had one and a half a day for an entire summer of one hundred games in the frontier league so peanut butter and Jelly. Whatever look at it will always have that memory that experience that scrapping by? I'm living my dream but I'm struggling and this is what it takes to keep me fed to keep me in the game to give me the energy to do what I need to do. So peanut butter and Jelly to me has a really profound story and and in this episode of I've logged on filming. I'm also tying in some of the minor league wage story because again. That's a big part of it. There's a lawsuit ongoing about minorly wages. And you're basically paid six hundred to twelve hundred. You're in the Frontier League if you're in the affiliated. Mlb farm system. You'RE GONNA make between eleven hundred and twenty one hundred if you're a non forty man roster player so if you never make it to the forty man roster then you're GonNa make somewhere in that range depending on your level so aaa players make like twenty one hundred and then you know single-a Aa in the seventeen fifteen down to twelve under eleven hundred in rookie ball or short season so the the pay is to put it lightly. Nothing you only get paid. During the season no one gets paid and spring training which is a travesty. Because you're there for four weeks three weeks and you're there the field all day you get money but you don't get paid so it's a really big huge drain especially as guys a little older. They have a wife they have a child. They have a mortgage. They have things take to send money back home. That need you know. Bills need to be paid. So it's a really difficult financial situation. The minor leagues almost untenable for a lot of people. And that yet you say. A wall took a million dollars in distributed amongst all teams players in the minor leagues. It would make all of them have a huge cost of living jump in. And that's like a nothing amount for a major league team to spend. They spend that on a risky prospect. Who was hurt for a couple of years? Who now they think maybe can do something in the major leagues again. They'll give him a million dollars just to have him in spring training almost so the way you look at money in the big leagues compared the way there so penny pinching the minor leagues if they refused to pay minor leaguers more money even when they make absolutely nothing especially in terms of. Mlb's you know. They're huge TV deals. And all this other stuff. It just doesn't seem to add up and so there's been a lawsuit going on. I think it passed Congress basically. Mlb or some others. They lobbied to sneak some legislative lingo into a bill. Basically saying that no matter. How many hours Miley baseball player works? He's only to be paid for forty. And if you're only working forty hours a week than the twelve hundred dollars or eleven hundred dollars does actually add to minimum wage. That was the lawsuit. It was about basically they were saying. We're working seventy hours a week when we make eleven hundred dollars a month if you if you average it out for the hours we're making below minimum wage standards. This is illegal. How can this be this? Be reasonable so there's still powers that be that are trying to keep minor leaguers down and that's a big conversation and In in the episode I discussed not only what peanut butter and Jelly means to me. Ellie how to make a good peanut butter and Jelly. Because I think a lot of people don't know you might think you know but I don't know if you're pro quality but also just the idea like should you be paid more or is it more like an entrepreneurial kind of thing because as I've learned over the years as an entrepreneur. There's lots and lots and lots of unpaid hours. You don't get paid it to put drywall in your new facility. When you're starting a new business you don't get paid as a business owner for all the hours you put in after the clients have gone home after you shut your doors for the day used to go home and prep for the next day. You have the responsibility of all this stuff. You don't get paid for all those hours and so employees have a different mindset. They want to be paid for every hour. If you're going to send me on a you know alert a business trip you have to pay me for all my time going out their time in the hotel. It's all over time or it's all just bonus time whatever but employs. Expect to be paid for any minute. They're working for the business and rightly so but for entrepreneurs there is just an absolute mountain of unpaid work. And you do that work for the greater good. Which is that one day. This business will pay me off a thousandfold when a successful and it'll make me more money than employees could ever possibly make and hopefully this is typically the case with entrepreneurs. It's bigger than that. It's a it's a personal calling. It's a passion project and there's that that emotional payoff as well so as an employee you have a sort of finite track about how much you can earn and the potential those earnings but as a business owner and entrepreneur if you put enough grunt work and it takes off and the business idea takes flight and it reaches all the people that you hope to reach. You know you could be Apple Computer Day. Which started in a garage or like Amazon which started in a garage all these places just thousands and thousands of hours of unpaid work by Jeff bezos by Steve Jobs by entrepreneurs like that thousands of hours of unpaid work eventually manifested themselves in millions and millions of dollars and so that to me is a similar journey on the minor league trail. Like I know like I. I didn't need to be paid to work out. You didn't need to pay more and pay me for my hour in the gym. You know my twelve dollars an hour. So I'm collecting law working out. I didn't need that. It's not to say it's wrong for other guys to want that because it's not they have a right to feel that way and it's not it's not an incorrect perspective on it but for me personally. I just reframed as look. This is a for a long term payoff where they pay me a little more. They don't it doesn't really matter scrape by. And if I can get where I WANNA to go it'll all be worth it either personally and emotionally or just financially also right guys play one and this is kind of the thing with the minor leagues is if you make it to the forty man roster for even a day and if you make the twenty five man roster late in the major leagues for even a day your salary jumps from twenty one hundred dollars a month to like ten thousand dollars a month if not more than that like fourteen thousand dollars a month so there's a huge payoff. Just get there for even as one day so and then your pay rate never drops back down. It's pretty fascinating the way the system works out so anyway stuff like that. Their stories connected to everything. Like when you talk about like. I love macaroni and cheese. But I really dislike kraft macaroni and cheese. The shapes as civil spongebob. Because it's not so much about the macaroni and cheese with because my sister and I we watch spongebob together as like more like adults not really like kids but we watch spongebob together at a time when he and she and I were sort of reconnecting and establishing a much better relationship than we had as kids kids like I wasn't a very good big brother and my sister just like didn't Mesh talk very much like I was into sports and being kind of Moody and Testosterone and she was into arts and crafts and soft fluffy things I guess and You know like sometimes that's how it is kids and when we got to college I reconnected. We come home. We'd watch spongebob. Spongebob and macaroni and cheese. Eating SPECIFICALLY SPONGEBOB. Was this a symbol of mine relationship with my sister and my love for her. And so that's just another example of something that will eventually be an episode on my blog whether it's baseball or otherwise but I enjoy telling stories and trying to share something that's meaningful that I've learned because all the all the philosophy that I studied in colleges can't be in vain you know so all that stuff is an extension of what's in my book and what's in my book. I like to discuss just a little bit because when I retired a couple years ago and I don't remember ever really talked much about it since I actually did. Let go had this podcast since two thousand sixteen or seventeen but the book was something. I knew I had to write really when I got my second elbow surgery so in two thousand twelve. I sat there in Evansville locker room for a couple of weeks awaiting my second surgery and it was a miserable couple of weeks and having a great season it was my chance to get signed and get transferred into a major league farm system and had my chance but instead. I was in the bowels of Evansville Bosse field and just waiting for my time to go under the knife. Start all over again with two more years on the bench so I kind of knew like this is a big moment in my life. I should start to right and so I did and so over. Those are the course of that. Like six weeks. Three weeks leading up to surgery and then the three weeks. I stayed on with the team after surgery until I went home. I just wrote every day. I was on. My Laptop is writing about the experience. And how I felt about it my back story that got me all that stuff and when I went home I had like eighty thousand words. Something like that which is plenty for like a two hundred page book and I felt like I had. I was ready but really. My story wasn't ready. I sent home to my family for writers and my mom's from Lucy is a is also a great writer and a good editor watching. She's a great writer and a great editor. I sent it home to them. And they both edited it and they both basically said You need an ending number one and like some of. It's good but some of it's not and as I look back on it. It was just kind of immature writing. It was yeah a lot of it was rehashing my story but some of it was me explaining like who I had become. I've become this more aggressive pitcher after my my mental Sort of collapse in Fargo. Where I was pitching terrible and had no confidence and I boost myself up when I was only like a big high of of confidence and aggressiveness as a Pitcher and a lot of that used out on paper in a really kind of immature way and as I look back on house like yeah they were very polite and just telling me like you're not there yet keep revising and wait for your story. But I didn't WANNA wait. I wanted to put it out there then but I didn't so fast forward now seven years after that almost seven years and I did go through Rehab again. I went back into baseball again and I grew up a lot. You know. I think everyone does every year. We go at least one one year but I grew a lot and my perspective has slowly evolved. I think as all of ours do but just in the way that I dealt with getting back into the game I dealt with never getting to the place. I thought I would get you know. I always thought that my story how this magical ending and it didn't it just didn't and it was really hard for me to reconcile that when I retired when I finally let go and January of seventeen which is just now two years ago I didn't know what I was or who I was or what to think about it. It was a really tough time. And there's just a lot of grieving and coming to terms with that really difficult journey now coming to an end and coming to a very abrupt sort of whimpering end. He didn't have any sort of like big triumph. Like you know very bill to Golic. Derek jeter did but it was just very whimpering. I had a great season. I had a good season two hundred fourteen. I had a great season in two thousand fifteen. The Best of my career the best level I've ever played at and everything was trending upwards. Everything always trended upwards except for my health concerns but at that point into an sixteen. My shoulder was bugging me. My performance started slip. I slowly put together that my shoulder was a big part of that performance slip and I just I just pitched awful and then when I got released I drove home. My car broke down. I broke up with my girlfriend. It was just a rough summer and it was a rough six months during the summer. It was a rough six months rehabbing after that summer and then it was a rough year coming to terms with all of that stuff. I didn't make it. I went out Not On my own terms for sure. I had come to terms with quitting which I didn't know how. How do that really on? That story is also told in here Because I had never identify myself as a quitter I was always kept going. I came back from to those surgeries. I always had elbow problems. I just created through much so much pain like how could I say that? I don't WanNa play anymore. That how can I do that now? It wasn't that I just didn't WanNA play I physically couldn't I couldn't barely break eighty as I was prepping for the season. I finally doesn't do that. I just had just couldn't But on top of that I've been paying so much that year my shoulder like everytime through while I was miserable it was just a situation where I didn't WanNa play baseball. I didn't WANNA do it your regardless of whether I could physically do it and and that was just tough because again like the eight year old kid who you know always wanted to play always wanted five more minutes on the field. He just didn't do it anymore. And it's it's weird to hear yourself utter those words But I did and so. I started writing the book shortly after I send my parents a letter. I explained to them that you know I'm retiring. Thank you for everything. We've been through for your support the way my parents were was just absolutely huge into helping me get through all the hard times if I've been playing because I was pushed to play because I didn't let them down. Because you know my dad used to be a great player. He thought I could be better than him or I had a little bit. His shoes I never had any of that. I just had play because you want to support me whether I played terrible or I played great so it was always completely because my personal motivation. Allow me to play. If I wanted to play I play and it was a very free to grope is an athlete that way so I wrote them a letter and I said thank you for all of that and that point. I decided that well if I don't know how to tell this twenty two year long story like that's just a really long story. So how do I tell in a meaningful not boring? Not Boring Way. How I grew up in baseball. And how my journey was unique and some of the things that people should understand about what it's like to sort of give yourself to sport and so with that letter. I decided that a format of letters would do that. I decided that I could write a letter to a kid that I worked with. Explain one of the really hard days that I had and and what the moral was and how it applied to them. I could explain to one of my former coaches how I'd grown up from a conflict on the bus. You know I could explain to my business partner. There's a letter to him know what he did for me to help me. Continue to to play and not feel guilty about leaving the business and all that stuff. So the book is a is a collection of of letters. All assembled into a chronological order. alr- into someone who is either contractually described in the book or it's relevant to them They're sort of characters in this just like anyone else and so that's what dear baseball gods is. This is actually a proof. Copy which it's super exciting to see one of these in the flash because I wanted to add up but as soon as I got this We made changes to the cover. We made changes I'm just crushing editing. Right now. Trying to get through a fourth draft to make it a lot better than it currently is and it's just getting pushed out the net out the nest no matter what so. It's a it's a project for me to get closure more than anything else but I I really in holding back so it's going to be probably the most honest books that you'll ever read. I know there's a lot of really great memoirs and novels that are the dig deep into human connection and the way we grow up and some of the ways we respond to tough times. But I know that that's all in there and I really I didn't sugarcoat anything but one thing I did make sure to do was make it appropriate for any age so there's There might be like six curse words in there now but I'm pretty Sherman at all of them out so there won't be a single one in the book there's no adult situations. There's nothing inappropriate. There's just like none of that. That wasn't the point of it. The point is that if an eight year old wants to read it they can read it and if any person wants to give me their attention they can without worry that it'll be offensive in any way. There's tons of ballpark humor. There's tons of clubhouse situations there's guys chase women out there playing but none of that in the book. That's not what it's about. So there's some heated moments Some heated conversations were sometimes occurs. Word makes the most sense for the for the situation but I worked really hard to edit down to like pretty much only essentials and really. I don't know that any more central so it might be one hundred percent clean when it's when it's done editing but even then it's one hundred percent appropriate for any age so that was a really big sticking point for me. I don't want anyone to think that if they give this to their son or their daughter because it's not just for baseball it's for any athletes for any person that it's they don't have to worry about what they're going to read if they haven't read through yet themselves so that sort of been what's been going on with me. The target release date is April fifteenth and with all projects at some point like I said earlier each other sort of shove it out the nest and let it fly. And I've been through four drafts. This draft four point five that I'm finishing now than getting more copy editing done. I'm going to do the audio book. So I have a kindle version heart up a paperback version. Maybe a hard copy hard back version and also audiobook version. Because I listened audiobooks all the time and so I feel hypocritical. If I didn't have an audio book on my own book I do think it's going to be absolutely terrible. Scenario audiobook but with all the podcasting. I've done and all the audio engineering. They know how to do now which is actually pretty minimal but I can do foundational stuff It makes sense for me to do it and do it. Well hence the new pretty new Mike and you know some of the The good audio software that we have and all that stuff so I'm looking forward to doing the audiobook. Even though I think it'd be really difficult to read all the words without screwing them up. I don't know how people do that. Because there's like so many words in there. There's like a hundred the current the current manuscripts at one hundred thirteen thousand but deleted four chapters. I haven't I'm not sure what the updated Coun- is but it's probably going to be down to like ninety five to one hundred five thousand words and again that's like twenty two twenty two or twenty five letters slash chapters. Whatever you WANNA call it. So that's That's in a nutshell. What this podcast was always supposed to be about. It's an art show what the blog on youtube is about. So if you haven't checked that out I'd really appreciate you checking it out even if you consider just a twelve minute favor to me and if you ever have any feedback about I'd love to hear your feedback because I'm trying actively to be better at video. Every time I put out a video and I've mentioned that numerous times on my email list. If you sign up for my email list you can do so in the description of the podcast and you can also do so in the description of my youtube videos so if you want to sign up my email list. They're pretty non spammy every once in a while. I tried to sell online course or something to you so bear with me when that happens. I only sell stuff that I've made and I believe in but at the same time fifty weeks out of the year. You're just GONNA get an update of a video of a book of an article that I read that I think would be relevant to you. You should check out so I think it's valuable. I get good feedback on my email list. I sent it out to two thousand plus people every week and only like four. People UNSUBSCRIBE. I think it's pretty good. You everytime I send it out so zero point two percent so I appreciate that and thirty something percent of you click on it and open it up so thank you for if you are a Myemma list and if you already get those if not again you can subscribe in the description of any of the the forms in which you're listening to this podcast but it's been a really fun two thousand eighteen and not in the sense that it was easy in the sense that I learned a ton of new stuff I spent a lot of money so if you bought an online course for me just know that I spent all that money back on audio or video equipment to make better videos so if you did buy something for me this year you are learning from me from one of my courses number one. Thank you but number two. Just know that the the GOPRO that you're watching this video on right now and the new Mike and Mike on the go pro for backup in case this. My computer crashes while it's recording right now all that was purchased with your support through my courses my t all that stuff so I really do appreciate it because I'm not just like stuff in my pocket and run down on the mall. I'm trying to make better content and you've I'm sure seeing that as youtube videos are significantly better looking. They're significantly better sounding than they were just three months ago to the point where I have to start redoing a lot of old stuff to make it better so and that's just the progression with everything you know. If you're a carpenter you learn new things as you go and your old projects that you're real proud of back in the day. Become kind of ugly by comparison. But that's again that's just the creative process and one of the things. It's been interesting about the book writing process and the video processing the audio process. Just how much more comfortable you with it over time? You know the amount of Would say in one of my first. Podcasts I mean it was just obnoxious going back and looking at them and I still now all record a video. I'll I'll say like because I'm around kids a lot and I use kid lingo. You know it's your all your language sort of adapts to your audience. But I'm talking to Kim. Suddenly I'm one Karen like yeah well you just do like this and then like I mean. Sometimes it's like Alec gotTa Stop Doing that but with all this stuff is just practice like anything else in the interesting thing about writing and bought this book is that those eighty thousand words of drivel from Ville twelve that my mom and her friend politely edited for me and give me feedback on. They were practice. They were practice for this book and this book is not practice for something in ten years. This book is what it is but in ten years. I hope I'm significantly better writer than I am today. I'm already working on my third book. And My fourth book about twenty percent into one of them which is sort of the next chapter in my life after this and I'm about twenty percent into another one which is a mental training book way in which my story with mental training with things. I've learned things. I've I've read from the ancient ways of the Samurai and sports psychology and all that stuff. So it's sort of steps you through it following my journey and mental training along with a lot of the principles and actionable things you can do with mental training and just ways to build coffins. Not just for sports but for for everyday life so but the thing is at some point I became in my mind a writer and whether I am or I'm not sort of more up to you. To describe are up to you to decide than me but in high school. I just wrote papers and usually got good grades on them. When I had to write a paper is like No big deal everyone else complaining all three pages like two thousand words like what and I was like okay and I usually if I two three to five page paper I would turn in two and a half pages or sometimes two pages which two pages like egregiously below the minimum that range like a whole page below three to five pages and I still got bees as usually as and teachers almost never called me out about it because I just wrote in a more dense. Sorta like concise manner where I just if I did the assignment in two pages. It was done and turned it in and I I didn't think twice about it and I still got good grades and didn't really get debited any points because I did the assignment as it was supposed to be done whereas in college i Read Entrepreneurship class as a senior and I was. I was going to compile all four of our sort of like ideas into a paper so everyone wrote a basically a one or two page paper gave it to me and then I was GonNa compile it into the group's paper so as in one voice and it's just A. They didn't say a lot in there. One to two pages you know. There's a lot of words but there wasn't a lot of value. There wasn't a lot of like action. There wasn't a lot of there wasn't a lot of meaning in the sensors. Lots of filler. Between small amount of meeting between a lot more filler and at some point along the line from high school into college and then in pro baseball I started to start to identify myself as a writer and in two thousand eight. I got pushed blogging. Yes blogging blogging blogging by training mentor. Name Nick to Manala Nick in two thousand eight nine. I interned for him. I didn't have a adding any college credit for it. I just wanted to learn more about fitness and training so I found him. He was a a a writer on the Internet on fitness. I found him. I reached Out Museum Baltimore and I just went over his his shop a couple of days a week for two four hours and I cleaned his floors while he let me kind of train his clients a little bit here and there and learn from him and a shadow and watch and I helped him and he helped me one of the things he did earlier. It was he said you need. You need to start a blog. I said why he said because it's the future he's like it's two thousand. Eight people are starting to ride on the Internet a lot more. I'm starting to do it. You need to start doing it to establish yourself as an expert on the web so I said okay. I don't know who's GonNA listen to me. I'm a twenty two year old kid but okay I will and so I did and I felt extremely anxious about it and vulnerable about it because I was a twenty two year old with a six point. One eight era in college. That was my college numbers and I know that I'm pretty sure that was right Because I was just regurgitating my book but that's not a good like why would you listen to this guy like it's not good? We weren't even good conference but nonetheless. I knew a lot about strength training. I'd I'd mentored for him or have been mentored by him. I'd read a ton of textbooks and wash everything on the web. I could find and read everything on the web. It could fine I was. I was all over my my strength coach hounding him for books and for knowledge and I was a gym rat so I did know a lot about structuring as a twenty two year old so I started writing and I just wrote about what I knew I wrote about pull ups. I wrote about push-up Forum. I wrote about rotator. Cuff exercises for baseball players. I just started writing. I started to slowly but surely getting people to watch it or to read it and you know as those reeds grow the chance that someone will leave a comment will grow and I was a pivotal moment for me because I didn't know who was out on the web every time I wrote something else like Thinking about how many people might respond in a negative way to me. It's like oh he might. They might attack this par- this par- they might just leave a nasty comment like this guy has no. He's talking about his head an elbow injury. Like why would you wanNA listen and the people did leave comments like that but I remember. There was a guy from college on my team name. Bo Bo is upper class and he was two years older than I was and bows always like picking on the freshman and if anything was ever like anyone's ever getting pranked or dislike picked on. Bo is somewhere around laughing about it and at the time as a freshman sophomore I perceived him as like that cackling like Hyena head over there. That sort of like the bully. The enemy was I got older. I started to realize that he he wasn't really he was just like that's just like part of the pecking order and he never did anything. Really malicious you dislike. Stir the pot a little bit and just like laugh when guys get flustered about it like myself included and after I graduated I hadn't heard from Bogan dislike bow again. I grew up and I realized that he wasn't really the enemy. He was just like any other upperclassmen. Stir the pot sometimes but one day like a couple of years after starting my blog. I get a comment from Bo. I mean it was a text message. I can't remember which it was but it was just like. Hey man like I read your blog. I thought it was great. Like keep doing what you're doing and it's like blew me away. Because in my mind he was a guy who always raise an emmy and was like sort of like again like the guy who was around when I was getting picked on those. Maybe like picking on me a little bit but as again as I grew up and started to understand how to respond to people better and how to understand people better. He was never like my enemy. He was always watching and just like he knew. I was a hard worker and a good kid and like a good ballplayer and whatever and so a couple years later. We both start to grow up. He left positive comment. And I'm like if Bo thinks what I'm doing is good if bo who would be like the number one person to leave like a negative comment if he will leave a positive one then like. I'm gold and it was a really big moment where I just felt super encouraged to keep going that. If he thought I was doing something beneficial for the baseball community than one hundred percent I was so at that point. I like continued to write and I just started at some point riding on the bus and sort of almost journaling on my laptop. Never had a journal sort of journaling on my laptop recordings on these things I started my newsletter into twelve. I think which was called year. My boy blue and that was an opt in newsletter. Where my family or friends could opt in. And then they'd get an email from each week and update them on how I was doing because everyone texting me constantly is tough to respond to effectively without being short. Especially if I'd had a bad game. I don't really want to respond too much so I would just make sure I sent at one or more updates per week via include bunch of photos. Give them a rundown be kind of honest about what was going on and You know I had I think over over one hundred people in that email list and it was a fun little endeavor and between that and just like sort of journaling. My Laptop on bus rides at some point I started thinking I could write a book and then in two thousand thirteen I wrote pitching is uncomplicated. Which was a summer camp pitching manual? We're GONNA DO SUMMER CAMPS At war with academy the first time and I decided we need a pitching manual or Anita. I need to outline all my thoughts for our pitching instructors that we were going to hire to do this camp and I started to make twelve outline major points and then I started making sub points and then I realized that a book is just twelve to twenty chapters. Ten pages of chapter becomes a book. And I'm like I could write ten pages on pitch calling. I read ten pages on mechanics. I could write ten pages on pitching drills. I could write ten pages on conditioning. Eiger right ten pitchers pages on the change in the curve ball and suddenly I had a book eight eight or twelve weeks later something like that. It was done went through. Revision went through another draft. Lucas format and edited for me added photos. We did a photo shoot ourselves. And he put the whole thing together made the cover and suddenly it was a book like eight months later and so it was a situation where out of nowhere never aspired to be a writer. Never do any of that stuff. I just overtime became from the kid that you know was good at writing papers and knew that writing came easy to him who accepted criticism constructively from my teachers. When they'd mark up my papers and read I didn't throw my hands up. I just asked like what does that mean like. What do you mean by this a wide? You scratch that out like what should I have? You know how should I reward that I was always cognizant of sentence formation all that stuff and then in philosophy classes in college you learn how to structure your arguments better. You learn what superfluous. What's not you know what sends meaning and which ones don't had to delete stuff that doesn't have any value to your overall conclusion or the premise or the premises that lead to a conclusion. Like what are you actually trying to convince people of does this sentence actually build on it and if not delete it and of course like writing a memoir writing fiction Some like that like you can have more sentences that include flowery descriptions and things that make the scene expand beyond just like description. Descriptive facts in an expository. It was sunny out but you know at some point just like in baseball. At some point I became a decent player. I can't pinpoint the time and date. Or what exactly caused it but you do the same stuff day in day out you continue to put yourself out there in practice and practice and practice at some point you just look back and wait. How did I get here? And that's been the case with tons of the kids that we work with. It's been the case with the case of myself as a player. It was this case of myself as a writer. And it's also becoming the case with myself as a filmmaker if you call my blogs films or whatever it is I don't have a title for that but it's a fascinating thing to watch and when I talk to kids and I talked to other people I just want to encourage them to continue to go with whatever they like doing and is to keep putting in the time and to play the long game. Because if it's anything I played. It's the long game you know. The podcast is almost two years old if not more so I can't remember if it's two or three years now The videos unplugging along the the book I just plugged along and it's an arduous arduous process. Editing is worse than writing. And it's tough to know when to stop. It's tough to know when it's right and when it's not it's tough to know what the include. The video actually has helped me a ton in getting the story in the right place because as I've created these logs which are again. Just some of the stories are in here. I every store that's in the book will eventually also be video blog. A video of log but some of the video of logs are not in the book. So as I've had to make those in real life to think okay. Well how would I tell that story and if I was going to tell that story in video how could I show it better than just simply talking to a camera and telling you what happened? How could I go to better help an audience member like see what I saw or like feel what I felt? How can I take this footage and make it better with a sound effector? Some background music or with a photo splashed on top or texts splashed on top or transition or something. It really makes you think creatively How can I improve the story as I bring it to life and then as I've been doing that with video it's made my brain work better folding and unfolding and sort of you know the story in writing as well so like all the sort of like creative avenues have been sort of flowing together and have helped? Get this to where it needs to be. So this wasn't a long winded. Pitch for my book here. Either GonNa buy and read my book or you're not and if you believe in me and my story then maybe you will. And maybe you won't. It doesn't matter what really matters is that I didn't do everything that I did for. No reason I went through a lot of really hard times in baseball. I went through a lot of hard times as a business owner just to get to a point where I like take to the grave. Like no and there's so many of us ever really profoundly interesting story and then it really just comes down to. How do we tell it you know like I'm in the grand scheme of things? A nobody most of us are in the grand scheme of things the same as everyone else. I am too but I could take my same story and I can cut out all the parts that don't add value and I can shape the parts that are valuable and without making any of it up without you know while still keeping it. A hundred percent. What actually happened. I can make it into a viable interesting impactful thing and that's something that I believe. I can do the video or with my book and with future things that I create Because when you watch TV and you watch movies some of the most impactful profound that we've ever watched the story. Isn't that profound. It's just the way that it's told. It's the way that they develop the characters. It's the way the described the senior. They show the scene so just like anything else. And I explain this to my softball. People on my softball. Email list a couple of weeks ago. Because I didn't have a piece of content to give them in a video or an article. I basically just explained that in the end. Today's podcast when you come to the realization that no one is special. Then you can set yourself free to do anything that you want the people that are on. Tv sure like Kevin. Durant super athletic dude couldn't be Kevin Durant however the vast majority of people who are successful whether it's CEO of a business or a famous writer or famous filmmaker director. You know musician. Whatever they all are the same as us they all had to put in tremendous amount of time to slowly getting better through craft. It's like I was unwittingly writing and writing and writing and to one day become a writer. I was putting all this time for doing pitching drills in my basement in front of a mere to one day. Become a good pitcher and I was consciously trying to be that but by virtue of putting enough time and re evaluating when I was doing and continuing to make smart decisions to steer me a little bit straighter towards my long-term destination. I got where I wanted to go and so when I see all these people doing things that I wanna do like a famous speaker famous writer famous Youtuber. There's no there's not one legitimate reason. I couldn't do any single one of those things. Not One not one. They didn't have some like crazy. Big break then have some some miraculous store like they were. They were on a ship that sank in the Atlantic and they're on a rowboat and they'd like fend off sharks with a with a bottle opener and that's why that they're youtube channel is huge. That's why they are world famous speaker. It's not like that. There are people have very mediocre stories. That are great at telling there are people that have very average journeys in sport or in business or whatever that they stayed the course for so long and they just continue to get better job and it continued to put in the the unpaid quiet work to keep climbing the ladder to keep doing impressive things to keep furthering themselves in their own career. So if you look at the vast majority of people it's not that they had some amazing crazy leg-up that got them where they wanted to go there all the same as me. They're the same as you the same as everyone else. And so when I think the life that I wanna live somewhere in the future what is it and I know what that is can I achieve that. The answer is without a doubt yes and the answer to how I achieve that is by continuously getting better at the things that I do getting better at my writing writing more creating more videos putting it out there in an honest way. Which is the reason for this podcast? We didn't have a guest and I just don't Wanna about pitching so much. I really just want to talk about the underlying things that ultimately made me good at pitching and that made me a decent coach and that made me a decent writer is the output for everybody. So if you want to know how one day you're going to get where you WanNa go whether it's college baseball or college softball or pro. Whatever or become the CEO or quit your job that you fricken hate. It's GonNa be the silent unpaid work and the knowledge that no one. Who Does the things that you WanNa do is any different than you? It's just that they put in the work and they started early and they play the long game and they kept going. So thank you for being part of mine. This is sort of like two thousand eighteen. Wrap UP I know. It's three weeks in January but I've got a great two thousand nine ahead of me. I hope you have a great two thousand nine hundred ahead of you. There's a lot of new things that are happening. I've got some great guests. I'm super excited for my book to come out and then to start on the next one so you for being a listener of the baseball gods podcast. I hope this new Mike has made this a more the most pleasant listening experience of the show to date and I will see you here next week.