Inside Pitch Magazine, March/April 2021

Intentional Walk: For Coach...

By Adam Revelette
Keith Madison along with his wife Sharon at the unveiling of his life-size bobblehead at the UK Baseball StadiumPerhaps the most inconvenient part about publishing a magazine is the uncontrollable fact that you aren't going to provide any “breaking news” material. Player news, the coaching carousel, polls and rankings just aren’t reasonable subjects to endeavor when you consider timeframe and many other factors.

It takes time to get everything together and go through rounds of edits in hopes that we can provide a near-perfect issue every time. It takes time to upload the final proof to our printer. It takes time to print 15,000 copies and get them addressed. And as many have learned, it can take time for local post offices or university mail to deliver them to your doorstep, particularly during a pandemic!

I can't speak for everyone involved with Inside Pitch, but in today's “what have you done for me lately” society, I've truly enjoyed not trying to be first, or viral, or verified within this arena.

Accepting what's not in your control is an important concept to understand, in baseball and in life. And with magazines. Maybe a coach we just interviewed takes a new job right after we go to print. Maybe a new concept or product we feature gets touted as the “next big thing” (or “definitely not the next big thing”) and by the time you get our magazine, you just don't want to read any more about defensive shifts or launch angle. And maybe (okay, definitely) I miss a few edits along the way. But ultimately, I’m at peace with those factors, and I know they are a minute part of the big picture we have of growing the game by doing our level best to share the highest-quality information we can find.

And the same is true in life. Take a look at actor Trey Wilson, who played Jim ‘Skip’ Riggins in Bull Durham and delivered the rant we referenced in From the Publisher. He died suddenly of a cerebral hemorrhage five days shy of his 41st birthday. Bull Durham had debuted just seven months earlier.

Coach Keith Madison is a Hall of Fame coach who cut his teeth in the trenches of the Southeastern Conference. He's the American Baseball Coaches Association Chairman of the Board. He's the National Baseball Director for SCORE International. And he's the publisher of this magazine. Quite a full plate.

But if you've ever met him, you know all of those roles and accolades take a backseat to his real calling. Christian. Father. Husband. Grandfather. Mentor. And it seems like he's always got room on that plate for an opportunity to talk about God, the game, fishing, or anything in between.

At the time I'm writing this, I know Coach and his wife Sharon are in need of healing, and prayers. By the time you read this, who knows what any of us will be going through! If 2020 has taught us anything, we know that none of us should wait to tell the people we love how we feel. So thanks Coach, I love you. And I'm looking forward to seeing you and Sharon in Chicago for the next ABCA Convention.

Perhaps the most inconvenient part about life is the uncontrollable fact that you aren't in control. But thanks to people like Keith Madison, I have learned to accept who is. So I've truly enjoyed not trying to be first, or viral, or verified. I know I don’t have to worry about downloads, impressions, or my brand. That's the beauty of life.

And magazines.

And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose. — Romans 8:28

Inside Pitch Magazine is published six times per year by the American Baseball Coaches Association, a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt association founded in 1945. Copyright American Baseball Coaches Association. No part of this publication may be reproduced in any way without prior written permission. While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information contained herein, it is impossible to make such a guarantee. The opinions expressed herein are those of the writers.