Written while pondering this 2013 Bowman Platinum autograph in my hand......
Though the journey was short, the realization for growth was immense. The bats of yesteryear would not serve in this new setting. A better bat and a glove earned from the BR shrine of thirdbasemen would be the tools with which the young arrival would make himself known.
He had heard tales of the squalor of this land, a team whose talent had been overwhelmed by the spirit of the sacrifice bunt. A place where saves were few and far between as the offensive ledger remained dormant through the early spring, unable to awaken.
So Maikel Franco steeled himself against such stories, admitting to himself that the stories were only of the present. He would have to succeed to help bring this team back into its former splendor of legend and have a second golden age emerge in a fair and just land.
He would have the mentorship of some remaining members of that era, those whose presence was a constant reminder of what was. Though their bats had slowed and their knees have tightened, they fight on with resolve to help the next generation lay this hopeful foundation.
Upon arrival, he felt confident in his abilities and took his place next to the hot corner. This is a place where the two previous residents had lost the wherewithal to move laterally as they sank deeper into the surrounding swamp. The ball and glove will have to be as one so he does not succumb to the same malady.
Three days have now passed since he reached his destination. The team, infused with the bubbling excitement from their home supporters, succeeded in every way, defeating the threatening desert snakes. Maikel Franco joined the rhythm of the celebration, contributing a triple, home run, and both steady and spectacular plays in the field.
The first leg of the journey was a success, but what lies ahead is the perils of the roads not traveled. He knows he must prove his worth at each destination, and so it goes as the journey at this level continues.