Here’s a story you’ll definitely want to read–and one that we definitely want to have as part of the blog. Cincinnati.com’s Paul Daugherty tells us about the scout who signed Jay Bruce and the words of wisdom that he told his fellow Texan even as a very young man.
“Don’t forget where you came from,’’ Brian Wilson told the 18-year-old the day the Reds drafted him with their first pick in ’05. Actually Wilson, being a Texan like Bruce, said, “Dance with who brung you.’’
In other words, remember. Who you are, where you come from and how you got here. Repay the generosity loan.
“He told me what I was getting myself into,’’ Bruce said. Bruce was 18 and leaving home and signing a big bonus deal, and he was doing it all overnight. Wilson kept Bruce’s head from blasting off its axis. “For someone to take that time and show that initiative meant a lot. His job was to scout me and sign me and lobby the Reds that I was worthy of a first-round pick,’’ Bruce said. “All the other stuff was just him.’’
Bruce’s job was to make Brian Wilson look like a smart man. And, to remember to dance. Brian Wilson Field will have lights and a scoreboard and the greenest of grass, in a part of town where green grass is a wish and not a metaphor. “In a not-so-affluent part of town,’’ in Bruce’s words.
Bruce won’t stop there. He’s taking over for Aaron Harang in the free-ticket business. He will maintain Aaron’s Aces, Harang’s ticket giveaway to military families. He will add a second ticket program, for families of special needs kids, to honor his 28-year-old sister Kellan. Kellan Bruce was born with her umbilical cord wrapped twice around her neck. The initial loss of oxygen left her mentally disabled.
“I’ve learned through (Kellan) not to take things for granted,’’ Bruce said.
This is clearly one of the best guys in all of baseball–which is one of the reasons we’re drawn to Bruce as a player–beyond his physical ability and potential.
You hear the same thing from every Cincinnati fan. Bruce is a guy who makes you want to root for him. You really want to see him succeed beyond just the normal amount of success because he is a quality person.
As someone whose fiance works with the developmentally handicapped on a daily basis, this article really hit home to us and it’s good to know that those families will have the opportunity to sit in a special section to watch Bruce and the Reds play in 2011.