In a world where news, even sports news, is clouded with negativity it was refreshing to hear this story from the Pittsburgh Post Gazette today:
Some players get a watch when a veteran who joins the team takes their jersey number. Daniel McCutchen got a college fund.
For his unborn daughter, due in May.
A.J. Burnett, who took McCutchen’s No. 34 jersey, will start a College America 529 plan for McCutchen’s daugher, McCutchen said. Not quite yet — the child has to be born first so she can get a Social Security number — but soon.
“When a veteran comes in and takes a number, some of the guys usually get something,” McCutchen said. “I know he has kids. He asked me what I wanted, I brought that up.
“Eighteen years from now, we’ll see what the market is.”
Players love to have their numbers. Some players have given money, cars, watches, and unknown items in exchange for a number on their back. This was refreshing and I hope it is a sign of things to come when future players who have expendable cash to get a certain number on the back of their jersey.
It was also refreshing to see the player giving the number up ask for something more than an accessory. Well played by both pitchers.
-Jonathan C. Mitchell can be found writing about the Tampa Bay Rays at DRaysBay and the Florida Marlins at ESPN’s SweetSpot site Marlins Daily. You can follow him on twitter at @FigureFilbert. Be sure to follow MLBdirt at @MLBdirt