What it's like to be traded
I was traded five times during my career – four times as a major league player, only once as a minor leaguer. There is nothing like the first time, and being traded as a minor league player was far different than any of the other times.
I can remember it like it was yesterday. There were ironies abounding that day, as well…
Dan Gabrielle, Mike Carista, Todd Pratt and I were sitting in the Double A clubhouse in New Britain. That morning (we had a doubleheader vs. the Mariners that day) we talked about the rumored trade for MIke Boddicker for the first and only time. I don’t think any of us ever considered being part of a trade, but we openly talked about that very thing for the first and only time that morning.
Gabe was a No. 1 pick, incredibly talented and a great guy. Mike Carista was the most talented pitcher I had played with to that point, and Todd was catching, coming off a Rule 5 spring with the Indians.
It was both funny and ironic that we went around the room and talked about everyone’s chances… but mine. I never even considered being included, nor did anyone else. We thought we knew Brady was going, but we were trying to figure out which guy would make the other piece.
We talked about Gabe, but that he was a No. 1 pick we didn’t think they’d trade him. We all thought Mike was one of, if not the best prospect below AAA. No way they’d trade him. Todd was coming off a Rule 5 draft and seemed a logical choice if there was going to be another big prospect.
It was a simple 15-minute conversation, nothing more really.
I was slated to start Game 2 of the doubleheader and was in the clubhouse watching TV. The Double A clubhouse had the square footage of a mini refrigerator so there weren’t many options for roaming while waiting to get ready for Game 2. A big screen TV, training room table, a table for the hot dogs (post game spread) and not much else.
So I am sitting on the chair watching ESPN, and along the bottom of the screen scrolls
“Red Sox acquire Boddicker……..”
“Boston acquires RHP Mike Boddicker for minor league OF Brady Anderson and minor league RHP Curt Schilling”
Talk about stunned, shocked, reeling, everything you can imagine.
That’s how I found out. That was how I was informed.
I walk out of the clubhouse to the dugout, Todd Pratt is on deck, I call him over, he leans to the screen and I whisper
“Dude I just got traded to Balitmore”
“No f’in way dude!”
“Ok bro, watch, I’m going to hit a bomb for you”
I laugh. He proceeds to walk to the plate and launches a 450 foot homer to dead center (for anyone that doesn’t know the field at New Britain only Hercules and the Lord himself go dead central at that park).
I laughed, went inside, got a phone call I cannot for the life of me remember, and pack my things.
I flew to Orlando to meet the Charlotte Knights, the Double A team for Baltimore.
I ended up starting the next day. I was nervous as hell thinking “Man they are going to release me if I don’t pitch well, they are going to think they traded for a pathetic player!”
I got my ass handed to me, Chip Hale took me deep, too.
Not a great story, but man I remember every bit of the little stuff surrounding that morning. Little did I know 16 years later I’d get a shot at wearing the uniform of the team that had drafted me.