25 Mr. Baseball


Kevin talks about how he comes from a family with a rich baseball tradition.

Todd: OK. Kevin, we're back here in the forest. We're gonna talk about sports.

Kevin: OK. Great. I love sports.

Todd: What sports do you like?

Kevin: Well, my favorite sport is baseball. Obviously, I grew up and my father was a baseball player so I was always around baseball.

Todd: Wow.

Kevin: My whole life.

Todd: You mean your father was a player in the Major Leagues?

Kevin: Yeah, exactly. Not only was he a player in the Major Leagues, he was fortunate enough to play in the World Series twice with the New York Mets.

Todd: Wow! That's amazing.

Kevin: Yeah, The Amazing Met's. 1969.

Todd: Wow, that's great. Did you play baseball yourself?

Kevin: Yeah, I played baseball pretty much my whole life up through college and university.

Todd: OK. Why did you stop?

Kevin: Well, it wasn't exactly by choice. I wasn't drafted high enough in professional baseball to.. in order for me to sign, so I ended up retiring from baseball and pursuing other things.

Todd: OK. Great. Do you like any others sports?

Kevin: Yeah. I actually, I enjoy all competition. You know I enjoy the other typical American sports of basketball and American football and so on, but I also try to learn about and enjoy the national sport of the countries that I'm in. For example now I'm in Japan and I've actually gotten quite into Sumo wrestling.

Todd: Oh, really?

Kevin: Yeah.

Todd: Nice. Have you ever seen a sumo match live?

Kevin: Yes, I have. I've been to two sumo bashos as they call them, or matches in Tokyo.

Todd: Nice. Yeah, I wanna go. I wanna go myself.

Kevin: Yeah, let's go sometime.

Todd: OK. Let's do it.

Learn Vocabulary from the lesson

always around

My father was a baseball player, so I was always around baseball.

If you are always around someone or something it is a big and important part of your life. Notice the following:

  1. She was always around famous athletes.
  2. He was always around music as a young boy.

fortunate enough

My father was fortunate enough to play in the World Series.

If you are 'fortunate enough' to do something you are lucky to have an special experience.  Notice the following:

  1. I was fortunate enough to remember my umbrella today.
  2. Were you fortunate enough to go to college?

up through

I played baseball up through college and university.

The phrase 'up through college and university' means throughout the whole time you were in those places.  Notice the following:

  1. I worked as a lawyer up through 2006.
  2. I lived in Boston up through sixth grade.

get into

Now that I'm in Japan, I've gotten into sumo wrestling.

When you 'get into' an activity or a topic you become interested in it and direct your energy and attention toward it.  Notice the following:

  1. I remember I got into making my own clothes for a while.
  2. He is really getting into reading.

seen (something) live

Have you ever seen a sumo match live?

To 'see something live' means to go and watch it happening in front of you instead of on television.  Notice the following:

  1. Did you see any live plays?
  2. We saw U2 live in concert a few weeks ago.
Answer the following questions about the interview.

Keep Listening

Below are some more great lessons!

Vocabulary Challenge

Complete the sentences with the words below.
around • fortunate • up through • get into • saw a live
  1. We fashion show in New York City.
  2. When did you painting?
  3. Were you enough to see the eclipse last night?
  4. Even from when she was very young she has always been animals.
  5. He only studied Chinese high school.