Tag Archives: David Samson

25 Signatures and One BIG Piece of Wood

The Infamous Tatianas bat-- before

The Infamous Tatiana's bat-- before

When Mario gave me my own baseball bat for my birthday last year, I had no idea what to do with it. Sure, it was pretty awesome having my own bat with the name “The Infamous Tatiana” engraved into it, but what could I use it for? A door stop, a reaching pole, a self defense weapon? All very likely choices, but Mario suggested taking it to the few games left in the season and trying to get signatures.

If you have ever read any of my posts about going to games, you will know it is damn near impossible to get any Marlins player to come by the buses after a game (except for Andrew Miller). Be that as it may, I still tried to bring my bat and with many unsuccessful attempts, I finally gave up and left the bat locked away in my dark closet at home.

An entire 5 months passed by and the 2009 Fan Fest was now upon us. Mario thought it would be a great opportunity to try to get a couple of signatures. So, I got my silver Sharpie and black bat and made my way to Dolphin Stadium. Upon arriving, Andrew Miller had begun to pass out free donuts. When he saw Mario, he said it was good to see him and asked if I was around. I went to greet Andrew, wished him all the best, and alas, I received my very first signature! Mario said that it may be the only one I would get and to try not to be too disappointed. I knew that I would get at least one or two more because I was willing to wait in the ridiculously long autograph lines.

We walked onto the field at approximately 12:00 pm and made our way to the first line. We had NO idea who was signing, but my goal was to get all the Marlins players to sign (with the exception of that damned Taylor Tankersley!). When I finally reached the table, I was relieved to see Anibal Sanchez and Zach Kroenke. Bam, 3 signatures. I was pretty darned pleased with myself… until I looked to my left and saw Jorge Cantu. I quickly ran to the end of that line and about 30 min later when I was the 2nd in line, Jorge began to get up and leave. “Jorge, me puedes firmar si tienes un momento” (“Jorge, can you please sign if you have one moment”). To my surprise, Jorge Cantu responded to my begging in his native tongue and turned to sign just one last time and then he disappeared. I then saw John Baker, one of my absolute favorite Marlins, emerge from the crowd. I prayed that he would come to our table. Instead, he sat at the one directly next to mine. I took that moment to attempt to talk to him. He turned around, greeted me, shook my hand, and held a good conversation with me for a couple of minutes. John Baker was actually so interested in what I had to say, that he turned the chair around a bit so he could hear me better. It was amazing and John is just simply a stand up guy.

So far, this day was turning out to be amazing. I was happy with the few autographs I had gotten and if the day was to end right then and there, I would have been very pleased. Andrew Miller remembered me, Jorge Cantu went out of his way to sign on last item for me, and John Baker was the coolest guy ever! I was in heaven, but the day just kept getting better. Now, we did hit our rough patches and got shut down by a few (Chris Volstad, Wes Helms, Tony Perez, etc) and I did get into a physical altercation, but as the seconds, minutes, and hours went on, I kept meeting more amazing players and getting more signatures on my bat. My once completely bare black bat was now quickly turning to silver from all the players that had left their mark on it.

As the day progressed, I was lucky enough to bump into John Baker again by the gated area and I called to him for his autograph. I didn’t think he would come over because he had just finished signing for an hour, but to my surprise (again) he came over for me (and only me) looked at my bat and gave me a chuckle as he signed. “The Infamous Tatiana, huh?” I couldn’t help but smile and blush.

By the time I reached the V.I.P. party that afternoon, there was barely enough space left on the bat for more signatures. Cody Ross, Alfredo Amezaga, Jeremey Hermida, and that darned Chris Volstad had all looked for nice clean spots to leave their mark. Even Hanley Ramirez was left looking for a good spot to put his John Hancock!

At 6:00 pm, I sat down and spun my now silver bat around. I stared in awe as I saw each unique squiggle and I nearly got myself sick trying to figure out whose squiggles was whose. Upon my arrival to my home at 6:30 pm, I patiently sat down and went over each encounter in my head. I finally ended at 25 different autographs, 25 different experiences, 25 new memories created to be cherished. While other fans have to deal with self involved and money hungry players, I have the pleasure of having the friendliest and most caring. I never realized just how lucky I truly was to have the Florida Marlins as my team until this day.

25 Signatures:

1. Andrew Miller
2. Anibal Sanchez
3. Zach Kroenke
4. Jorge Cantu
5. Alfredo Amezaga
6. Hanley Ramirez
7. John Baker
8. Matt Lindstrom
9. Rick Vanderhurk
10. Burke Badenhop
11. Cameron Maybin
12. Ricky Nolasco
13. Chris Volstad
14. Logan Kensing
15. Fredi Gonzalez
16. David Samson
17. Billy The Marlin
18. Cody Ross
19. Jeremy Hermida
20. Gaby Sanchez
21. Ryan Tucker
22. Jack McKeon
23. Brett Carrol
24. Emilio Bonafacio
25. Leo Nunez

Completely

Completely

and

and

totally

totally

badass.

badass.

The first of the day - Andrew Miller

The first of the day - Andrew Miller

And the very last - Hanley Ramirez

And the very last - Hanley Ramirez

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Filed under baseball, fan fest, Real Life

I’m Baaaaack!

If there was ever anything that would get me back to this blog, it was yesterday’s 2009 Florida Marlins Fan Fest and an eagerness for the brand new season filled with fresh faces and hope. Despite the many efforts of others (Wax Heaven, Dinged Corners, etc.) this economy had me worrying about only one thing since the day my husband became unemployed. I could not longer focus on baseball, writing, or other joys in my life. I had to concentrate on work, especially after the major “Black Friday” held at my company where about 30 people were laid off in one day. I needed to prove my worth, and when it came down to it, I was one of the valuable players and have been ‘guaranteed’ employment.

Like usual, the day began early for us. We arrived at the stadium at 8:30 am. Andrew Miller walked around early morning and passed out free donuts, and surprisingly enough, he remembered us! As usual, it was deserted until about a 1/2 hr prior to the Fan Fest beginning and 2009 tickets going live. The ticket lines were filled with Yankee fans that couldn’t wait to get their hands on tickets for Father’s Day weekend when the New York Yankees will get shut down by the Marlins :). I purchased my two tickets and then quickly rushed inside.

Compared to last year’s Fan Fest, this year’s was a bit less organized. It was held ON the field, versus outside of the stadium, which was simply awesome, but very chaotic. For the first time, fans could access practically every part of the stadium with out security chasing them down, and if you were V.I.P. you were spoiled beyond belief.

All the Marlins players (with the exception of a few) were friendlier than I could have ever imagined. For the most part, they were happy to be there and each took as much time as they could to sign for and pose with everyone. Some went out of their way (John Baker, Ricky Nolasco, Dan Uggla, Jorge Cantu) and some just couldn’t be bothered (Chris Volstad, Wes Helms).

I’ve learned that the majority of people that were there were only interested in one thing. An autograph. The moment a certain popular player would emerge, everyone’s animal instinct would come out and the area would suddenly turned into a mosh pit. I was waiting patiently for Gaby Sanchez to sign my bat, when Hanley Ramirez came out and I knew my life was over. I was at the very front of the stage the players were on, and there was a huge mob behind me. This was just not good. People were pushing, shoving, stepping on, falling on, leaning on, elbowing, punching, you name it!

At one point, a very large man put all his weight on top of me, crushing me, stepping on me and scratching my arm so hard that I immediately started to bleed. He didn’t even so much as apologize or make sure I was okay. So, I took matters into my own hands and nearly knocked the wind out of him when I socked it to him in the ribs. I was sick of people thinking they could get away with treating each other like garbage and harming each other physically for a measly signature. Children were getting stepped on and punched. If it wasn’t for the fact that I loved my bat so much, I would have smashed it up against someone’s head. There is no excuse for that kind of behavior.

Despite my little altercation, I was able to meet Burke Badenhop which made my day because he is also another very nice Marlin. After meeting him, Mario and I ventured into “back stage” to see if we could track down any other Marlin’s whose signatures I needed. We struck up a conversation with two girls who were desperately looking for Dan Uggla. After asking one of the women that escorted the players around the field if Dan was still there and not receiving the answer they hoped for, they decided they would leave. They gave us their “VIP” passes (season ticket holders were the only one’s able to receive those) and she told us about a special party going on up stairs.

Mario and I made our way up and our eyes widened when we saw who was at the party. Andre Dawson was just leaving, as was Brett Carrol, but Alfredo Amezaga, Cody Ross, Cameron Maybin, Jeremy Hermida… they were all there and there was no one nearby to tell you to leave them alone. They were all socializing with fans, signing, posing, and having a good time! We were able to gain access as I guilted the woman at the table to let us in. (You needed a company name to enter and the girls didn’t provide us with one) It was the most amazing scene. For once, you could approach these players with out a large mob. I was finally able to calmly meet Hanley Ramirez and other ‘hard to access’ players. If we had these passes from early morning, I doubt we would have left the room and I highly doubt I would have gotten into that altercation earlier in the day.

Like annoying party guests, we were the last ones to leave the V.I.P. party room. We made our way down stairs at 6:00 pm to watch the grand finale- – fireworks. It was an amazing 10 hour day. We accomplished a lot, met practically the entire team, and left with ear to ear grins on our faces. The Florida Marlins may not be an ‘amazing all star’ team, but we have relatable players that care about their fans and take the time to show them that.

I can’t wait until Opening Day!

Before

Before

After

After

The Infamous Tatiana and her 25 autographs!

The Infamous Tatiana and her 25 autographs!

Robert Andino, myself, and the new guy

Robert Andino, myself, and 'the new guy'

Chasing down Cameron Maybin

Chasing down Cameron Maybin

In the Marlins Clubhouse

In the Marlins Clubhouse

Doin it up V.I.P. style, baby!

Doin' it up V.I.P. style, baby!

Jeremy Hermida--totally nice and funny

Jeremy Hermida--totally nice and funny

Chris Volstad- Finally got the little...err... big bastard!

Chris Volstad- Finally got the little...err... big bastard!

Me and Hanley Ramirez... kinda.

Me and Hanley Ramirez... kinda.

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Filed under baseball, fan fest, Real Life

David Samson Is A-OKAY!

The country is in a recession. That’s right. I said it. I may as well, because our damn president won’t admit it and I am sure every American is feeling it. Gas prices are at an all time high across the states and they don’t look like they will be lowering anytime soon. Even milk and other groceries have raised in price. To top it all off, many are being laid off because their companies can no longer afford them. What is the economy coming to?
With all this being said, I am sure you can all understand how tight my wallet is right now. I can barely afford to pay the mortgage on time, much less my son’s milk. I have had to cut back on a lot, as has my husband. No wax boxes any time soon, no new clothing, etc. Any baseball games that we have attended have been freebies from friends.
Out of sheer desperation, I wrote David Samson an e-mail. I won’t get into detail with what I had said, but in a nut shell, I pretty much complimented the team and told him how much I love baseball. The next day, his secretary emailed me telling me that I would have 4 tickets reserved under my name and the will call station for Sunday June 8th’s game against the Cincy Reds.
This just goes to show how much this man really values true Florida Marlins fans. He is willing to lend a helping hand and donate 4 tickets in a GREAT part of the stadium to a couple of fans that can’t really afford it right now. Many people consider David Samson the “devil”, I just hope his kindness shines a little light on him.
Mr. Samson, if by chance you ever do read this, please know I am utterly grateful for your gift to me. The seats and the game were amazing and I look forward to attending many more when I can. Thank you so much. You are a genuinely good person.

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Hanley Ramirez Makes Contract Official

I had the opportunity of being able to witness Hanley Ramirez make his $70 million- 6 year contract official yesterday morning.  The press conference took place in a small baseball field across the street from where the Orange Bowl once stood and where the new home of the ‘Miami Marlins’ will now be.
Hanley Ramirez handled himself incredibly professionally. He came to the event with his eldest son in hand. While we were all there to celebrate his now being with us for another 6 years, I observed a side of Hanley that no one else could have ever appreciated more than I; and I will say one thing, seeing him as a father increased my respect for him as a person.
The entire experience for me was exhilirating. Mario and I were literally part of the press. We were competing for the best shots and best footage. It was wonderful!
Thanks to my Marlins insider for inviting me to this event. 🙂

***All photos courtesy of The Infamous Tatiana, unless otherwise mentioned!***


What used to be the Orange Bowl.


The welcoming Marlins van.


The inflatable Billy the Marlin standing tall.


Marlins owner: David Samson


My competition!


Young Hanley Ramirez fan shows her support!


Billy thought the press conference was for him


Our star has finally arrived!


Junior gives a warming smile to the crowd.


Hanley gives a tender smile and wave


The signing of the contract. My competition got in the way!


Signing page two.


Junior bored while daddy gives a ‘thank you’ speech.


Hanley drowning in little leaguers, but he seems to be enjoying it.


Samson and I. Very short man. I had to squat down…. (photo courtesy of Mario)


Fredi and I (photo courtesy of Mario)


Sportin’ the 2003 world series ring! (photo courtesy of Mario)


My Manatees and I! I love these guys! (photo courtesy of Mario)

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Filed under baseball, florida marlins, hanley ramirez, Real Life, Sports