Sunday, November 27, 2005

The Wagner family goes to New York

Earlier, the NY Times had this article on the cultural hurdles to the NY Mets' efforts to lure Southwest Virginia native and hard-throwing free agent relief pitcher Billy Wagner to come and pitch in New York.

The article says in part:

"This morning, Billy Wagner and his wife, Sarah, will leave their three children and herd of alpacas at their 60-acre spread near the Blue Ridge Mountains in central Virginia for 36 potentially life-altering hours in and around the biggest, noisiest and perhaps most intimidating city in the country. . . .

Of most concern is his comfort in the area, because his family plans to move with him. Philadelphia might have a slight edge in the Wagner sweepstakes even if the Phillies cannot match the Mets' money. The Mets sent a DVD to Wagner about greater New York, but now, in person, they will have their best opportunity to sell the big city to a player who does not have big-city roots. . . .

Wagner, who spent parts of nine seasons in Houston and the last two in Philadelphia, is no stranger to bright lights. But he is a professed country boy who grew up in a town of 360 nestled in the Appalachian Mountains of southwestern Virginia. The Mets understand that it is imperative to demystify the stereotype that life here begins and ends in Times Square. . . ."

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