World's Oldest Rookie
Chapter 1: Alex Osborn
Caution: This Sex Story contains strong sexual content, including Ma/Fa, Consensual, Romantic, Heterosexual, Interracial, Slow,
Desc: Sex Story: Chapter 1: Alex Osborn - Alex Osborn just wanted a chance, at long last, to prove he could pitch in the majors. He got his chance -- and took another chance as well -- maybe with the wrong woman.
OK, so maybe I should have given up this game a long time ago.
It's kind of embarrassing, being the World's Oldest Rookie Pitcher. I'm 32-year-old black American lefthander. OK, my mom's white and my dad is black, but we all know that in this country, any discernable amount of black ancestry makes you black, period.
And I've been up to the big leagues before this -- but never for more than a couple of weeks, and -- needless to say -- never with any notable success.
I signed with the Dodgers out of the University of Southern California nine years ago, and, like every other young prospect with a successful college career, I figured I'd serve my two years -- maybe three, tops -- in the minors and then graduate to the big time.
The big time. Yeah, right -- if the big time was Albuquerque, New Mexico, in Triple-A. Albuquerque was a nice town, actually, but nobody is going to mistake it for anything but what it is. Albuquerque is a town with "Triple-A" written all over it.
If it were back east, it would be Double-A.
I was a left handed pitcher, and for awhile, the Dodger bosses were telling me it would only be a matter of time before I'd make it to The Show. Maybe my fast ball wasn't anything special, but I had a nice variety of pitches, decent control, and what the coaches called "good temperament."
Watching yourself grow old in the minors isn't real good for your temperament, I can tell you.
Late in my third year as a pro, the Dodgers called me up to the big club in September when the rosters were expanded for the final month of the season. I had been a starter in the minors, but I only did middle relief for the Dodgers, and not a whole lot of that. I got into five games, won none, lost one. I got a couple of "holds" -- that's a kind of half-assed statistic that means you appeared in a game and didn't screw things up unduly during your brief tenure on the mound.
The following February, they invited me to Vero Beach to Spring Training with the big club, but while I was there they traded me to the Minnesota Twins, in the American League.
The Twins sent me straight to their minor league camp and I started the season at their Triple-A affiliate in Rochester, New York.
Both the trade and the sudden reversion to minor-league status sent me into a funk. Whether it was outright clinical depression or just a severe case of feeling sorry for myself, I'm not sure, but I almost lost my career (such as it was) right then and there. Anyway, I didn't do anything notable enough at Rochester to earn a trip back to the majors, and I spent the whole season there. I was, at that point, 28 years old and getting a little long in the tooth for a guy who'd still barely gotten a smell in the bigs.
I met and married a girl from Rochester that year, and when I got called up by the Twins early in year five, she came with me to Minneapolis-St. Paul. We were on top of the world, thinking we'd made the big time at last.
We were looking into buying a house in the St. Paul suburbs when the Twins sent me down again -- back to Rochester -- after only three weeks. Did I perform that badly? Not really. Actually, I hadn't gotten much of a chance to screw up. Roster changes are made, sometimes, for reasons that bear little relationship to how an individual athlete is performing.
I kept thinking I'd be called back up -- and I was; but it was in September again, when all it meant was they wanted to take another end-of-season look at me, when nothing much was at stake anymore on the field of play.
But, well before that September, my one-year-old marriage was already effectively over. If I ever again made an escape from Rochester, it would be all by my lonesome.
Well, at least we hadn't made any babies, so the split was clean.
OK, so I got released by the Twins after that season, and I gave some serious thought, with my 31st birthday just past, to tanking the baseball career and finding honest work somewhere. I had a college education, f'chrissake. I could be something besides an over-aged minor league baseball player.
But, damn it, I still thought I could pitch, if I could just get a break! I hooked on with Tampa Bay -- kind of the bottom of the barrel, career-wise, but I wasn't feeling proud. Maybe I could get a fairer shot with a last-place club.
The Devil Rays' AAA club was in Durham, North Carolina, and that's where I spent the season.
I was still there for my 32nd birthday, at the end of the following season.
During that off-season, I did some serious exploring of career opportunities outside baseball. Sure, the money I was making -- even minor-league money -- was better than I could expect to earn, initially, in other jobs, but I wasn't getting any younger and it was time to get real about doing something else.
There's a running joke in baseball that left-handed relief pitchers are in such high demand that we can find work forever, as long as we are still warm and can get the ball over the plate at all. A few years back, the oldest active player in either league -- by quite a margin -- was a left-handed reliever.
Maybe that old bromide ought to have been a source of encouragement to me, but considering that I'd been around for going on nine years (and left-handed for the entire time) and had barely gotten so much as a cup of coffee in The Show, the old saying wasn't much comfort.
If anything, maybe it should have been telling me that I just wasn't up to the minimum standard. I didn't want to believe that, but OK, if the Devil Rays didn't invite me to their Big League camp the next February for Spring Training, I was going to quit. Period.
They didn't invite me. Worse, they gave me my unconditional release, instead. In December, yet! Jeez, they could have at least waited until the winter meetings, found out if anybody else might express an interest in trading for me.
But before I could "retire," I got a call from Arlie Stone, the Baltimore Orioles' pitching coach. He invited me to Spring Training with the Orioles.
"I'd like to come, Arlie," I told him, "but I gotta tell you, if they send me down, I'm gonna quit. I'm gonna be 33 years old next September and I've been in Triple-A since forever. Is there any chance at all I can make the big club?"
"You know what they say about left-handed relievers," Arlie said.
"So what are my chances of going north with the Orioles in April?" I said.
"Decent," Arlie told me. "No kidding, Alex, the chances are really pretty good. We need lefty help in the bullpen, real bad."
"Tampa never even gave me a smell, in two years."
"Different clubs, they got different needs," Arlie said. "Listen. We were getting ready to make them an offer for your contract when they let you go."
"No shit, Alex. I mean, there's no guarantees, but you come to Florida, you work hard and show Paul Warren you can still pitch, you got a job."
"OK, Arlie. I'll come, and I'm grateful for the shot. But you just might as well tell Warren, right off. If I don't make the big club, I'm not going down to fucking Ottawa! I'm gonna retire."
"Just come, Alex."
Arlie Stone had been the Baltimore pitching coach for the entire five-year period that Paul Warren had been the Orioles' manager. I knew Arlie from before that, when he had been pitching coach under Warren in Bowie in the Eastern League. I had been pitching in the Eastern League then. There weren't too many minor leagues I hadn't competed in at some time or other. All Stone knew about me was what he had seen in two or three appearances, five whole seasons back. That and whatever he might have read about me more recently in scouting reports.
But Arlie was a helluva pitching coach, and the Orioles, under Warren, had been enjoying a minor renaissance. They'd been over .500 for the last five years, and had made the playoffs in two of those years -- once as Division champs, and once as the American League Wild Card.
Making the 25-man roster with that relatively strong club seemed like long odds, given my lackluster career to date. But then, I'd always said that nobody had ever given me a decent shot.
Maybe this, at long last, was going to be my shot.
That year, the Orioles had themselves a brand-new Spring Training camp outside of Lakeland, Florida. Pitchers and catchers reported on February 17.
I would show up there -- early.