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Get To Know: Ricky Mast

Knee-deep in a creek picking up thousands of dead fish in the hot August sun; that was probably the first time I thought seriously about making a career change. Don’t get me wrong; I have always been thankful for my job with my family’s hazardous materials removal business here in the beautiful mountains of Virginia. However, as I stood soaking wet alongside a golf course pinching my nose with one hand while shielding my face from an older gentleman’s errant tee shot with the other hand, all I could think was, “It sure would be nice to have a job where I get to do something I love.”

And for as long as I can remember, I have loved baseball.

My passion for baseball and the Atlanta Braves developed as a result of time, circumstance and, I believe, destiny. At the outset of the 1990s, my father had just broken into the big leagues of NASCAR as a full-time driver in the Winston Cup Series. Fortunately for me, my parents often made special arrangements so that I could travel with them almost every week to different parts of the United States to watch my father race.

Virtually all of NASCAR and its teams were (and still are) based in the heart of “Braves Country” in the southeastern United States. Therefore, there was a lot of excitement regarding the Braves in the NASCAR community during my father’s first full season on the Cup tour in 1991. “Did you see the Braves last night?” “How about them Bravos?!?” “That Smoltz kid looks tough!” On and on they went. Being that these were the people that I was around most of the time, I wanted to see what all the fuss was about.

Back then most Braves games were televised on TBS. So, no matter what part of the country I happened to be in at the time, the hotel would always have TBS and I could always watch the Braves.

In the twenty years since, the Braves have been with me in every stage of my life. From watching Otis Nixon’s “The Catch” in a hotel room in Talladega, Alabama in 1992, to watching a devastating 18-inning playoff loss from my apartment at James Madison University in 2005, to literally jumping up and down with joy watching Brooks Conrad’s improbable walk-off grand slam in my office in 2010, the Braves have always been there.

Now I get to experience a new season of baseball memories from the ultimate office, the MLB Fan Cave! A week has gone by since I learned the news and it’s still unfathomable to me that I am going to watch baseball for a living. After years of hoping and yearning, I finally get to do something that I truly love as a profession.

And it sure beats the heck out of picking up dead fish.

Follow Lindsay on Twitter @RickyMast.

Knee-deep in a creek picking up thousands of dead fish in the hot August sun; that was probably the first time I thought seriously about making a career change. Don’t get me wrong; I have always been thankful for my job with my family’s hazardous materials removal business here in the beautiful mountains of Virginia. However, as I stood soaking wet alongside a golf course pinching my nose with one hand while shielding my face from an older gentleman’s errant tee shot with the other hand, all I could think was, “It sure would be nice to have a job where I get to do something I love.”

And for as long as I can remember, I have loved baseball.

My passion for baseball and the Atlanta Braves developed as a result of time, circumstance and, I believe, destiny. At the outset of the 1990s, my father had just broken into the big leagues of NASCAR as a full-time driver in the Winston Cup Series. Fortunately for me, my parents often made special arrangements so that I could travel with them almost every week to different parts of the United States to watch my father race.

Virtually all of NASCAR and its teams were (and still are) based in the heart of “Braves Country” in the southeastern United States. Therefore, there was a lot of excitement regarding the Braves in the NASCAR community during my father’s first full season on the Cup tour in 1991. “Did you see the Braves last night?” “How about them Bravos?!?” “That Smoltz kid looks tough!” On and on they went. Being that these were the people that I was around most of the time, I wanted to see what all the fuss was about.

Back then most Braves games were televised on TBS. So, no matter what part of the country I happened to be in at the time, the hotel would always have TBS and I could always watch the Braves.

In the twenty years since, the Braves have been with me in every stage of my life. From watching Otis Nixon’s “The Catch” in a hotel room in Talladega, Alabama in 1992, to watching a devastating 18-inning playoff loss from my apartment at James Madison University in 2005, to literally jumping up and down with joy watching Brooks Conrad’s improbable walk-off grand slam in my office in 2010, the Braves have always been there.

Now I get to experience a new season of baseball memories from the ultimate office, the MLB Fan Cave! A week has gone by since I learned the news and it’s still unfathomable to me that I am going to watch baseball for a living. After years of hoping and yearning, I finally get to do something that I truly love as a profession.

And it sure beats the heck out of picking up dead fish.

Follow Lindsay on Twitter @RickyMast.