Brian Gump: Another First In My Pro Career

Well, to be honest, I have been waiting to write this specific blog ever since I had arrived down here in the GCL. I had to earn the right to be able to write it though and today I have.

After today's game I was informed that I am being promoted to the Phillies Low-A affiliate, the Lakewood BlueClaws for the remainder of their season and their playoff run. Obviously, I am pretty excited about getting to make a move like this and join a team that is about to make a run at a getting a ring. And my family is extremely proud as well. Not surprisingly I could hear my mom's voice beginning to tremble towards the end of our short conversation when I told her the news. Yesterday was her birthday so the timing is nice since I didn't get to celebrate with her and the family or give her a present (Happy Birthday MOM! :-). My brothers were both super stoked as was my Dad. It felt really good to be able to call all them and hear the smile on their face when I told them the good news.

I was actually in the ice bath when our manager, "Rolle" de Armas came in and told me to come to his office after I was done. When that happens there are only two possibilities of what that meeting will be about; either you're in trouble/ getting released or you're getting a promotion. I have a very clear conscience about my time here so I was eager to finish up my contrast (switching back and forth between ice bath and hot bath) session so that I could find out where I was headed. I had four minutes left in the bath to have my mind race and think of the possibilities, it was between Lakewood and Williamsport (short season A). Our trainer, Troy, then walked in after Rolle had left and had a smirk on his face asking what had happened and I told him I didn't know yet. When I got out of the bath and dried off I walked out into the main training room and "Manzo" our roving infield instructor asked me when I was leaving and I replied that I hadn't even been told what was happening yet. He laughed and said that we'll almost be on the same plane (referring to a joke I had made with him a few days ago when I asked him to take me with him when he goes to AA Reading on Tuesday). I then walked out to go down the hall to Rolle's office and was intercepted by Mike Compton (our roving catching instructor) and he gave me the news prematurely and I shook his hand as well as Joe's (our head equipment manager) hand and thanked them for all they had done while I was there. I finally made it into the coaches' office where I got the news and congratulations from Rolle. It was kind of funny because as I went around saying my "thank yous" and "goodbyes" it seemed as though everyone on the staff had known for a while and it was all a big secret.

Good news travels fast apparently as my teammates were congratulating me without me even telling them what had happened. I'm really going to miss my teammates here; we had built up some great chemistry. They make everyday at the field a pleasure. I'll see them again in spring training in March.

To my GCL cronies, Enjoy the rest of the season and thank you for all the great times on and off the field. It's a tough schedule down here, but you guys made it into a great time. Good luck the rest of the way and have a great offseason enjoying your family and friends and working out hard. Here's to coming back next spring training with ten pounds of muscle added on like we all talked about.

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