I imagine you're familiar with Twitter. As far as baseball goes, Twitter is where you'll find everything first. If you want baseball news, scores, reaction, rumors, trades, that's where it all starts. Before anything is posted in a newspaper or on a website, it's tweeted. So Twitter is great for breaking news, but it's also taking down barriers between players and their adoring (or, in some cases, not so adoring) public. Curious what, for example, Will Middlebrooks has to say? You can follow him and hear directly from the source. It's really quite something to read players thoughts without any filter.
Despite all of the above, I don't follow many athletes. I follow analysts, fans, and writers because that's where the vast majority of news and useful analysis generates from. Most athletes, it seems, are not unlike most people. Quite a realization, I know, but if you think about it, you probably don't want to sit down and talk with most people. Most athletes maybe aren't so different. Now comes news that Dustin Pedroia is on Twitter. Aside from being a former MVP, Rookie of the Year, and an All Star multiple times, Pedroia is awesome. Or nuts. Or both. In either case I'd sit down and talk with Dustin Pedroia at a second's notice and I'd do that whether he played second base for the Red Sox or not. So I followed him immediately.
As of this writing he's only sent out six tweets. Of course, it's DP so they are all awesome. Here they are in all their glory.
1. The first tweet is a simple statement, a label really, with a photograph, showing our protagonist alongside wrestler Rick Flair and former Red Sox outfielder Josh Reddick. I initially labeled Flair as a "former wrestler" before checking out his wikipedia page (where writers who don't know anything
about pro wrestling go to learn). Despite looking like your grandparent's crazy next-door neighbor, it appears Flair still wrestles.
Nature boy twitter.com/15Lasershow/st…— DP (@15Lasershow) February 19, 2013
That Reddick was in the photo and wearing Red Sox gear shows the photo to be at least a year old, as Reddick was traded to Oakland last off-season. Thus Pedroia likely spent some time planning this first tweet. "Should it be a picture of that time I put Tito in a headlock and didn't let go until he peed his pants? Naah..." He had to figure out the topic, and then find the photo. I'm just guessing here, but he probably had to work to put it into a useable format for tweeting as well. That's dedication. When DP decides to do something, dude goes all out.
2. The second tweet is about the oddest request I can think of*, though maybe for a professional athlete the oddness is decreased slightly. Still, why anyone would ever want to do this I can't fathom.
Wish my teammates would help me with this twitter I'm trying to look up jim Rome I have no clue what I'm doing— DP (@15Lasershow) February 19, 2013
Fortunately MLB.com Red Sox reporter Ian Browne offered Pedroia "a full tutorial" today so Pedroia should be able to *gulp* look up Jim Rome.
* After writing that line my 4-year-old son awoke in the middle of the night and between loud sobs asked for his baby sister. He doesn't have a baby sister. So the Rome thing has company.
3. The third tweet offers some advice and some hope for the future. Also it uses the word 'out' as a sentence indicating there are maybe some skills still to develop.
Goodnight I'm on the twitter if u ain't hustlin ur getting hustled . My teammates will show me tomm how to use this thing . Out— DP (@15Lasershow) February 19, 2013
There is some hope beyond Pedroia's desire for help from his teammates as he uses the word 'the' in front of Twitter as in 'the twitter.' That's the funny right there. Scouts call this 'showing potential.'
4. The fourth tweet is both sweet -- he tells his wife he loves her -- and funny as he criticizes her for her choice of twitter handles.
@mrspedroia15 you got so creative with ur name . Love u— DP (@15Lasershow) February 19, 2013
Four tweets in and he's already calling out his wife. This is gonna be good.
5. At this point I was alerted to Pedroia's Twitter presence and noticed his avatar, the picture that shows up on all his tweets. Twitter defaults new user's avatars to a white egg with a single color background and Pedroia hadn't changed his yet. So, I sent him this tweet.
@15lasershow Welcome to the Twitter machine. First off we gotta get rid of that egg.— Matthew Kory (@mattymatty2000) February 19, 2013
I'm sure I wasn't the only one, but minutes later he wrote his fifth and final tweet of the night.
Goal for tomm great practice and get this egg off the top of my page that's terrible.— DP (@15Lasershow) February 19, 2013
It's going to be a good year. I can just feel it.