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Meeting at the Old Police Station: Flight

Someone has to make the tough choices.

Tampa Bay Rays v New York Yankees Photo by Adam Hunger/Getty Images

You walk back down the hall to your office. There’s not really much to say. The mayor thinks he has you, but you’ve been planning for this.

You open the safe and take out an alligator-skinned briefcase. You flip the latches and look at your rainy day fund: $300 million. All of the money the team saved when $7 million closers didn’t walk through the door. All that roster and budget flexibilty. It had to go somewhere. It could have gone toward the new stadium.

But now it’s a different sort of rainy day, and you’re about to cause damages that are “not readily calculable.”

You pick up the phone.

*ring*

Heeeeeey, Ji-Man, how’s it going?

...

Hahaha, you sure are right about that. You’ve done such a great job improving your first base defense, so I know I can trust you with another important mission.

...

Yep, I know that Ji-Man, you’ll do anything to help this team. Look, I need a favor. Can you swing by my office after the game today? I might not be there, but if not there will be a briefcase on my desk. Take it to the old police station on Tuesday at 3:00.

...

Yeah, the one near Green Bench.

...

Sure you’ll make it back in time for batting practice. Promise. Listen, it might seem like no one’s there, but the door will be open. Just go in and wander around for a bit. You’ll find them.

...

I know, weird, right? It’s an American thing. Just how we do business sometimes. I don’t know why. Don’t worry about it.

...

Thanks, Ji-Man. See you tomorrow.

*click*

You feel bad about that one. Ji-Man really has worked on his defense, and it’s been surprisingly okay. But he never turned into that everyday slugger some of the baseball ops folks thought he might. When times get hard, and you have to move fast, there just isn’t room for multiple left-handed platoon 1B/DH types, and Nate Lowe has more years of control.

You make another call.

*ring*

Yeah, Chris [Westmoreland, Director of Team Travel and Logistics], start loading the trucks. Tell the guys after the game, but do it one by one, quiet-like. Everyone but Ji-Man. Avoid I-95, they’ll have it watched. I want us on I-77 by 3:30.

...

Don’t worry about the Red Sox. We’ll make it up later. The commissioner’s office is on board. We can do a doubleheader in Montreal.

*click*


That’s one ending. Flight is always on the table. Teams have done it before.

As a reminder, this is a work of fiction. You can return to the beginning of the story, here.