A few weeks ago, I had the pleasure of discussing Blue Jays reliever Dirk Hayhurst, who has been doing an incredible job promoting donations to relief efforts in Haiti and connecting with his fans through Twitter. Through that, he's gotten tons of fans awaiting the release of his upcoming book, "The Bullpen Gospels", which has received enormous amounts of praise just off early reviews.
As the Blue Jays have stockpiled relief pitchers this off-season, most recently adding possible-closer Kevin Gregg, the team's blogosphere has been frequently concerned with having spots for all their favorites. A lot of fans wonder if some giant trade of relief pitching is coming up to clear room for all these additions, but another common concern has been whether they'll be a spot for Dirk Hayhurst - the minor league veteran of seven years who had just made it to the Majors last season.
Through his Twitter page, Dirk has recently been hinting at some bad upcoming news, which was learned of yesterday when it was revealed that Dirk would be undergoing exploratory shoulder surgery on Friday. This will take him out of the mix for the opening day roster, and with any exploratory surgery, the extent of the injury and repair are still unknown.
Dirk spent time yesterday afternoon letting fans know a bit about the way the injury has put his career into perspective. He allows us to see an athlete not caught up in the fame, the money, and the accolades, but about the ability to have a platform to do good, to live out a dream, and even to make just a modest living. From his Twitter account (@TheGarfoose):
Obviously it's unnerving because it's not just my arm on the operating table. It's my house payment, my grocery bills, my whole future.
Yes, It's true, I may only get 15 minutes of fame, but it's not the length of the fame.
I may never have great career numbers, or big time accolades for baseball. But I've tried to make the most of my little platform.
A few Dollars for Haiti, a few goofy smiles on faces, a book that may help thousands understand more about players, and themselves...
I can't guarantee it'll last long, or it will effect everyone, but I'm trying my best with what I got, even if it's only 15:01
Since I was extremely grateful to have Dirk check out the blog the last time I wrote about him, I hope it will reach him again when Project Franchise wishes him the best of luck on Friday. And hopefully he knows that when those fifteen minutes or fifteen years are up, Project Franchise's team would love to have him aboard.