Earlier this week I was invited to work a private autograph signing with Kevin Millar. I've worked many private and public signings in the past, but this one was particularly unique. You see, Ryan Dempster hosted signing at his private home. Ryan and Kevin are good friends and we were invited into Ryan's kitchen to have Millar sign about 275 items.
As awkward as it was to be in the kitchen of a Red Sox player, those of us working were afforded the opportunity to see him in a private and personal setting. Honestly, it was refreshing. There were many family members walking around the living room and kitchen. Ryan was sitting on his couch, watching TV with kids in his lap. Moreover, when Ryan asked the family if they wanted pancakes for breakfast, a resounding "Yes" game from the group. Despite the fact, he pitched 6+ innings the previous night, and achieved another win for the Sox, he was standing at the oven and kitchen counter, preparing flour, eggs and batter to cook pancakes for everyone.
In this world of highly paid athletes and entitlement, it was great to see that at least some players, in this case Ryan Dempster and Kevin Millar, value family first. The connection they have with their children and immediate families demonstrated to me that their priorities are in the right place. Lastly, they are truly 2 of the nicest athletes I ever met.