KID REPORTERS’ NOTEBOOK
Stepping Up to the Plate
“Not everyone will make the big leagues,” Epstein told me. “But if you love the game, play through high school, [and] play college if you can. Do your best, and be a good teammate.”
Speaking of good teammates, Red Sox players Mookie Betts, Xander Bogaerts, and Jackie Bradley Jr. highlighted the event. Betts accepted the Thomas A. Yawkey Memorial Red Sox MVP Award. Bogaerts earned the Jackie Jensen Hustle Award, and Bradley took home the Special Achievement Award.
“This award means everything to me,” Bradley said. “If you had told me I was going to have a 29-game hitting streak, I don’t know that I would have believed you.”
Bogaerts, a two-time Silver Slugger Award winner, talked enthusiastically about the upcoming season. “I hope to help the team make it to the playoffs again,” he said. “This year, we have an even better team with the trades and signings, so we’re in a good spot.”
Luis Tiant, who is known as one of the best big-game pitchers of his era, received the prestigious Judge Emil Fuchs Award. “I played 19 years in the Major Leagues,” said Tiant, who retired in 1982. “I had some good years and some bad ones, too. That’s part of baseball.”
“READ EVERY DAY”
Among the guests were sportswriters Bob Ryan and Dan Shaughnessy, and Pulitzer Prize-winning photographer Stan Grossfeld. I asked them for tips for kids who want to work in professional journalism someday.
“It’s simple,” Ryan said. “Read. And if you love sports, make sure that 50 percent of what you read is non-sports.”
Shaughnessy agreed: “Read every day. And when you got nothing to do, read even more. Don’t sit and think too much. Just start practicing writing.”
Grossfeld said that self-confidence was also crucial for success. “Remember, these athletes are just like you and me and everybody else,” he said. “Don’t be afraid to go up and talk to them.”