Meet Francisco “Chico” Herrera; he’s the kid on the right. Chico has been a Dodger batboy for the last four years, grabbing bags, cleaning spikes, washing cars, and doing all of the things that batboys do. Today, though, Chico’s getting a shot with the Dodgers. Yes, that’s right: the batboy is getting a shot at the big leagues. CUE THE MUSIC.
Herrara isn’t some complete rando; he’s the the starting shortstop on his team at Valley College in North Hollywood, and he’s got some talent. He’s made some athletic plays tracking down fly balls during batting practice, and while he and starting pitcher Jon Garland were warming up in the outfield, Garland commented on his strong arm.
Garland spoke with De Jon Watson [the Dodgers’ assistant general manager for player development], and Chico was invited to attend the team’s open tryout today in Arizona. The deal was, if Chico makes the team, Garland gets to represent him.
Now, it’s highly unlikely Chico actually makes it. But, as Watson, points out, you never know.
“You watch him in BP and he’s out there power-shagging in the outfield. Like, ‘Who is this kid?’
“So yeah, we’ll take a look at him. You never know. Guys change, they mature, they grow. You never know until you take a look at him.”
We’re pulling for Chico, because a) it would be a victory for underdogs everywhere, and b) it is the slowest. news. day. ever. We really need him to do some spectacular, YouTubeable things during the tryout, so we can post them on the site. Yep, a “Baseball Jeremy Lin” would really be swell on a day like today.
Speaking of which, here’s something spectacular Chico did during a game last season. Enjoy.