Faith in the Game is a blog containing submissions by athletes of faith. Each of them was asked one question: Tell us a story about a time when your faith was most present in your life. Rather than tell us about their faith, we asked them to show us.
These stories are oftentimes uplifting, and at all times profound, raw, honest, introspective and heartfelt. These are not the sort of stories you hear in a press conference. Some of them take place on the field; others, off it. They are presented without agenda or judgment. On many levels, we think you'll find them fascinating, as they pull up the veil on a side of sports that is rarely revealed but very often present.
This blog is moderated by author and father Ben Petrick, a former Colorado Rockies catcher thought to be the only professional athlete to have his career shortened by Parkinson's Disease, along with writer and father Scott Brown. In addition to their professional and family lives, both men are also coaches of youth sports. A selection of the stories they've collected will soon appear in a book, and together they're also working on Ben's autobiography.
If you'd like us to email you when new stories appear on the blog, please send us a note at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Matt Holliday, 31, is an outfielder for the St. Louis Cardinals. A member of the 2011 National League All-Star Team, Holliday is batting .324 with 14 homers and 49 RBI despite dealing with injuries. Drafted by the Colorado Rockies in the seventh round in 1998, he elected to sign rather than attend Oklahoma State, where he would have split time playing baseball for his father, Tom, as well as quarterback for the football team.
Holliday and his wife, Leslee, have two sons, Jackson (born December 4, 2003) and Ethan (born February 23, 2007), and a daughter, Gracyn (born November 7, 2009).
My dad is a baseball man. When I was younger, he’d tell me about guys he’d been around in the 1980s, and how once they became men of faith, they got soft. They weren’t the players they used to be.
I laugh at this now. Hey, Jesus turned over a few tables in his day. He knocked over the post-game spread. He wasn’t the soft Jesus you see on a stained-glass window. He had his moments. He died on a cross, for goodness sake. This was a tough dude.