How To Be A Better Infielder And Husband, By Assistant Coach Schwarsky

Me, as a young buck.

Listen kids, there’s two types of men in the world: those who can turn a tight double-play and take care of their wives, and those who can’t. I ain’t perfect. I’m not the best Little League coach and I wasn’t best husband. But those that can’t do, teach. And those that don’t have wives no more, teach. Let’s round ’em up and get started.

  1. Always keep your glove touching the dirt. Square your hips, bend your butt, and get that leather right in the sand. Don’t leave no room for the ball to sneak under.
  2. Clean the damn gutters. She says “Clint, ya gotta get those damn squirrel eggs out of the gutters.” And you say, “Darlene, a squirrel ain’t laying any eggs.” And no matter how much ya want to break out your new encyclopedia and show her squirrels and eggs don’t mix, just clean the damn gutters, kids. Let Darlene have this one.
  3. No backhand scoops. Fancy pants rip easier than bluejeans, that’s Clint Schwarsky always says. You’re not all gonna be Derek Jeter. Hell, most of ya ain’t even gonna be Chuck Knoblauch. Get your whole body in front of the ball and make the play ya knuckleheads.
  4. Go to salsa class. She bought it for your anniversary even though you wanted Styxx tickets. Tommy Shaw has the pipes, I’ll tell ya. You didn’t put your heart in it so ya can’t be surprised when she brought her gym buddy Jared and they entered that dance competition and won and of course she had to use the two-week vacation prize to Belize, where it’s understandable she “didn’t want you to call.” Go to dancing class kids.
  5. Cut the crap. This one is the most fundamental of fundamentals. It’s about attitude. If ya go out with a frown, you’re gonna come back in to the dugout down 9–0 and wondering why the other team keeps spitting on you even though your coach is begging the umpire to make ’em stop. Simple as that.
  6. Apologize. Tell Darlene you’re sorry. You promised Paris and the beach house and the reservation at Delvecchio’s for her birthday and all you gave her were twenty years of snoring and Denny’s. Forgive her for Jared and Aaron and Henry and the twins from Best Buy, and maybe she’ll forgive you for not cleaning the gutters and leaving your socks around. Buy that timeshare. Shave your beard. Ride up the house on your new hog and when you see her through the window decorating the Christmas tree with the twins from Best Buy, let her go. The three of them are happier together.
  7. Stop chewing your damn Bazooka Bubble Gum in Assistant Coach Schwarsky’s car. It’s getting all over the pleather and it’s a lease, gosh dammit. Cut the crap, kids. You’re the good ones, I tell ya, but my hair is grayer than Gail from SuperCuts. I should give her a call…