After 6 months of baseball regular season games, I finally am sitting down to attempt to write a blog to cover a much overdue explanation of my unusual HDL season. Many of our veterans who have enjoyed HDL weekly game updates and informative articles in the past about the season remember how engaged I was in the HDL. (for new players, “I” = Larry Rutledge, I am the guy you see at the park taking photos and doing things to help the weekly games run smooth.)
First of all I want to explain why this year I slowly stopped participating as an active team member. This is hard for me to explain, because it’s complicated. The main reason is my age. While I don’t feel 70 years old, in my mind that number (70) has had a dramatic impact on my psychological attitude about actually being that old and still thinking I can be on the same field with players who are 10, 20 or 30 years younger.
I have played this game for so long that I continue to expect my reflexes to do what they have always done, automatically, and at the same speed and quickness that I have (or thought I) possessed in the past. But after a few early season ground balls or pop-ups during the start of the season, I realized I either needed a lot of practice, or “take 2 weeks off and quit.”
Through all of these life changing signs I discounted the fact that in December (2017) I had: a minor stroke; I was taking pills for blood pressure and seeing a heart doctors about 2-3 times a month. So I physically started ratcheting down my baseball activities.
Another early spring distraction from the HDL was following my grandson during his high school baseball season. Watching him perform became my number one priority, for which I have no regrets. Add in a high demand from my professional responsibilities at Christian Brothers University, TSSAA and NCAA umpiring assignments, I found very little time to participate actively in the HDL.
During this limited time to be involved in the HDL, it caused me to become depressed. I was mainly depressed with my lack of ability to contribute to the HDL, other than managing the Blog to post important schedule updates. So, that is what I wanted everyone to know and understand.
So where am I now and what can HDL members expect from me in the future? I am not sure. Sitting down and sharing this is a big step to re-connecting to everyone who encourages me to be a part of the HDL. Time permitting, I will try to do more Blog articles and posts that help everyone know what is going on during the post season play-offs and award nominations and Officer elections.
I want to thank everyone for their support and continued friendship. The HDL is a great venue for building long lasting relationships.
Yours Truly, Larry Rutledge, HDL President Emeritus
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