I got a chance to cover the Astros Winter Caravan last Saturday. It was my first time at that kind of event and have some quick thoughts on this MLK Day.
Saw plenty of people getting gloves, bobble heads and balls signed, but the most popular thing were these glossy pictures of different players. My cynical side wondered if they were for the fans getting them signed or if they'd be on eBay within a few days.
Talking to Michael Bourn, it's easy to see why he's a fan favorite. Bourn was really engaging with all the kids who came through and talked with the fans. Bourn really came alive when I asked him about the upcoming season. Seemed like he was ready for spring training to start. Nothing to report on if he's in the "best shape of his life."
Bud Norris after a fan congratulated Bourn on his second Gold Glove, "I appreciated him winning that too. He helps me out a ton out there."
I'll have a short interview with Brett Dolan up tomorrow. One thing I learned? Don't necessarily joke around with someone you don't know right off the bat. I asked Dolan when I started the interview if he was in the best shape of his life heading into spring training (as a joke). He laughed and then asked me, "You do know I'm not a player, right?" He was pretty serious too, so I can only imagine what kind of idiot he thought I was at that point. Oh, well.
Dolan was pretty gracious about the site and acted like he recognized it when I mentioned I write for TCB. I'm not sure if he's familiar with the site or was just being nice, but I was appreciative of the gesture either way.
Anyone else gone to these events? What do you think of them? I was surprised by the number of fans who had traveled from afar to get to the Caravan. Have you ever driven an hour or more to get to a fan event?