Terrance, one of my best friends who coaches a little league team in Germany, is the grandson of Sandy Valdespino, a former MLB player during the 60s and 70s. He played with the Minnesota Twins in the 1965 World Series. Terrance recently asked me to take some baseballs to his Grandfather so he could sign them for the little league team.
I met up with Mr. Valdespino and his daughter at a Chick-fil-A where we enjoyed some conversation while he signed the baseballs. He was telling me about the baseball life and how he is grateful to have traveled around the world and met many different people. He talked about his experience at the Minnesota Twin’s 50th World Series Anniversary that he attended 2 years ago. He also was telling me about some managing he did in Italy, then a kid came up and asked, “Did you use to play baseball? Are you Hank Aaron?” Mr. Valdespino laughed and spoke baseball with the kid for a moment.
I bought my own ball to be signed, but it was made from a different material than the other baseballs, so after he signed mine, the ink smeared. He signed it in another spot with a different pen though. His daughter offered to get me another ball and send it to me, but I declined because I find the smeared autograph to be unique. I told her that my ball has a story to go along with it now. I had a good time with Mr. Sandy Valdespino and his daughter, and I know that the kids on Terrance’s little league team will enjoy their autographed memorabilia when it arrives.