Million Dollar Arm: “Everyone is a Free Man”, as told by Eddie Michels

By on June 6, 2014

 

THE ORIGINAL PHOTO: Rinku Singh on the mound July 4, 2009. As Eddie says Wes Freeman in centerfield and base umpire, Chris Tipton (Eddie Michels Photo)

Rinku Singh on the mound July 4th, 2009 in Bradenton. See  Eddie’s comment below:  As Eddie says Wes Freeman in centerfield and base umpire, Chris Tipton (Eddie Michels Photo)

Rinku Singh on the mound July 4, 2009

Rocket Sports & Entertainment Network’s Eddie Michels gets around.

Eddie has long been a part of the MLB and MiLB (Minor League) circuit and always has a great story from all over the major and minor leagues.   Always having a good laugh but reporting with utmost integrity, Eddie has been part of Rocket Sports & Entertainment Network since conception.  Eddie has always managed to produce incredible photos focusing on MLB spring training,  rehab stories, and brightest future stars of MLB. Eddie has worked many years in radio and has spent tireless hours in the press box writing and serving as an official scorer.

Eddie always maintains a colorful recollection of some memorable baseball happenings throughout the years.  Eddie’s journalism has touched many in the MLB fraternity.  Whenever I was heading to cover a game, Eddie would say, “Rick say hi to ________ for me.”  Sure enough they were happy to hear their thoughts were with Eddie.  Two that come to mind is Toronto Blue Jays manager John Gibbons and former Cleveland Indians skipper Manny Acta.  Both gentlemen beamed from ear to ear at the sound of Eddie’s name and hearing Eddie said “Hi.”

On the Rocket Sports & Entertainment Network  Show back on May 17th, Eddie, in a way that only Eddie can share, shares his story of Rinku Singh and Dinesh Patel – the first professional baseball players for India.  Not a misprint, India NOT Indiana.  The Disney movie out now in full force in theathers, Million Dollar Arm is based on the true story of Singh and Patel.  Million Dollar Arm opened on May 16th: the day before our exclusive interview.    Singh and Patel made their pitching debuts on July 4th 2009 at McKechnie Field in Bradenton, Florida for the Gulf Coast League Pirates.

The movie is a tear jerk, love story, as it seems always the Disney fashion, based on the true story .  The movie is heart moving, motivating, dream-making, and is definitely worth the see, however here at Rocket Sports & Entertainment Network with the assistance of Eddie Michels, we have part of the story not told in the movie…

Like I shared above Eddie Michels gets around, and as Eddie said, “Guess who was scoring with one hand and taking photos with the other?”  Yes, Eddie Michels.  “No one knew they were to pitch that day except Tom Price from the Pirates, who was the Gulf Coast League manager.”   They actually didn’t look too bad, if you know what I mean. Singh took 20 / 13 strikes to get through the first, he gave up a run, but had a strike out.  Patel came in. He allowed one base runner because of an error, and he only faced four batters and got out of his inning on 9 pitches / 7 strikes, and there was nobody there. It was on the 4th of July.”

 

 

The quote that was cut by every other news outlet:  “I turned on my tape recorder… I asked them, ‘What most impresses about the United States?’ – and not waiting for the pause, it was Patel who stepped right forward and made the comment, ‘Everyone is a free man,’ which is politically incorrect in India.”

Eddie’s comment below:  “In fact, the picture that appeared in the NY Times nine days later, when Singh won his first game, and that’s a funny story in itself.  The umpire Chris Tipton, the base umpire, and the center fielder Wes Freeman, Free-man, everyone is a free man, Wes Freeman.”   Eddie goes on to share the story of Singh’s win that day. Yes, in Eddie Michels fashion.

 

Gulf Coast League Yankees scoresheet on July 4th, 2009 the day Rinku Singh and Dinesh Patel made their Million Dollar Arm debuts. (from scorekeeper Eddie Michels)

Gulf Coast League Yankees scoresheet on July 4th, 2009 the day Rinku Singh and Dinesh Patel made their Million Dollar Arm debuts. (from scorekeeper Eddie Michels)

July 13th, 2009 GCL Pirates scoresheet with Rinku Singh as winning pitcher (from scorekeeper Eddie Michels)

July 13th, 2009 GCL Pirates scoresheet with Rinku Singh as winning pitcher (from scorekeeper Eddie Michels)

July 13th, 2009 GCL Yankees scoresheet (from scorekeeper Eddie Michels)

July 13th, 2009 GCL Yankees scoresheet (from scorekeeper Eddie Michels)

Rinku Signh (EDDIE MICHELS PHOTO)

Rinku Singh (EDDIE MICHELS PHOTO)

 

 

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