Respecting the Game of Baseball On and Off the Field
Steve Adubato goes one-on-one with Tommy Weber, Bench Coach, Brewster Whitecaps of the Cape Cod Baseball League & Professor, St. John’s University, to discuss teaching the next generation of athletes to understand, love, appreciate and respect the game on the field, in youth sports or in a management position.
"We're pleased to be joined by Tommy Weber, Bench Coach of the Brewster Whitecaps of the Cape Cod Baseball League, and Professor at the great St. John's University. How you doing? I'm doing great. How are you? I'm doing great. You've loved baseball from when? Well, baseball's been a religion in my life really. My father was a pro. My father was a Scout. And I became a Yankee fan for life. As a seven year old, I had a chance encounter with Mickey Mantle coming out of Yankee Stadium, so I pretty much... Where did you grow up? Brooklyn and then Staten Island. Woah woah woah woah woah. Brooklyn? Yeah. Yankees? Yeah. So the Dodgers were out? But the Dodgers were very much in, in my house, because my father was, of course, a Brooklyn guy who worshiped the Dodgers. Three teams in New York City all at once. To those guys, they had this real proprietary interest in baseball. They were real, kind of stewards of the game. You know, the worst sin you could commit in my house was to disrespect the game of baseball. That was it. Really? That was it man. You had to make sure you respected the game. You ran everything out. You ran on and off the field. You dressed the right way. You spoke the right way. You respected your opponent. You respected your teammates. Jeter-esque? Absolutely, absolutely. Just that's what comes to mind. You know what? Yeah. Maybe, perhaps arguably, the greatest... not the greatest player of all time, but the greatest... perhaps the greatest career, all things taken into account, of all time is Derek Jeter. You know, I'm fascinated by your background, because as a student of leadership, who got cut from my varsity baseball team. And I just told you, our two sons play baseball, and trying to get better everyday, at 13 and 15. I'm fascinated by how it isn't just baseball for you, it's the connection between baseball... I may be making too much of this Tommy. Baseball, life, and leadership. You see them together, don't you? Absolutely. No question about it. Listen, I was, you know, in Brooklyn I watched my grandfather take a pail of water, hot water, put some soap in it, and scrub the street in front of us, and that really informed the rest of my life. You know, my grandmother used to watch us go to school with all the other Italian ladies, with the pillow on top of the windowsill, and we disappeared. Past 4th Avenue, my brother and I, he was 10, I was six, and they didn't..."