Target Field is my second home, and have been going to Spring Training in Fort Myers as often as possible since 2011.
My love of the minor leagues was sparked when I watched an 18 year old shortstop and future superstar smash a home run for the Appleton Foxes of the Midwest League when I was 11 years old. That shortstop was Alex Rodriguez.
I played competitive baseball my entire life until I hung the cleats up at 29 after tearing my ACL roaming LF for my long-time Town Ball team, the Cologne Hollanders.
Of course I was having the best season of my career that year too. Still know my line: .379/.535/.448. I take solace in the fact I made the catch on the play that tore my knee apart. You could even say it was meant to be, considering it was the 9th inning of a close game, one out, with bases loaded, and my squad up by two. The guy who replaced me in LF had much better wheels, and made a diving catch on a liner from the next batter to seal the victory.
I still contest I would have nabbed the guy tagging from third at home if my knee hadn't exploded on that play, though!