June 17, 2018

A Day with The “Shaker”

Growing up a Blue Jays fan,  Lloyd Moseby was always one of my favourite ball players.

In November 2015 I was attending Blue Jays fantasy camp for the first time. I knew Moseby was going to be one of the coaches there, and I was psyched to meet him.

A lot of the coaches were guys I had known through my time with the media or managed to meet in one way or another. Lloyd, I hadn’t met, outside of a brief run in I’ll tell you about later.

The day before fantasy camp started they had a golf tournament that was optional for campers, and I decided to play it. I, of course, didn’t know who I would be golfing with. And wouldn’t you know it, I find I’m golfing in a twosome with Moseby…Just the two of us. I see him on the putting green beforehand, I wanted to approach him to tell him that I was a big fan of his…suddenly, I’m a kid again. It’s the Shaker, it’s Lloyd Moseby.

I went up to him and tried to say hello. I remember just stumbling and saying, ‘Hi, Mr. Moseby sir, I’m Barry Davis, I’m going to be golfing with you today…’

he cut me off right there and said, “So you gonna hit ‘em straight kid?”

The guy just made me feel so at ease right away. And for the next four, five hours playing golf, I was just chatting and having fun with the Shaker.

When they announced the teams the next day, I was thrilled to find out he was one of my coaches.

The first day of fantasy camp we were going through a number of drills. One of them being catching fly balls. Moseby  was the one hitting them to us in the field, and he knew all about the stories about me. I was that media guy who had dropped that ball in the camera bay.

When he hit one to me, I remember him saying, “Come on kid, you got this, you got this.”

And I caught the ball.

It was one of the coolest moments of my life. Not because I caught a ball and proved people wrong or anything. We caught dozens of balls. It was because there I was, catching fly balls hit by Lloyd Moseby, and I’m catching them and throwing them back into him.

In 1985, the day before the Blue Jays clinched the AL East, Moseby made a big error, and it led to them losing. The next day he hit a homerun and it led to them winning. I’d always admired the way he bounced back and went from goat to hero in a day.

Lloyd and I remain friends to this day, but he’ll always be a little more to me, simply because of how much he meant to me as a kid. Now, as for that first brief meeting.

I was 16 years old  and I had my first part time job,selling shoes at  Aldo’s in Etobicoke.

My older brother was the store manager and had told me that a lot of the Blue Jays players lived in the area and that was the closest mall for them to go to.

One day, in the store comes the Shaker, Lloyd Moseby.

I was stunned, I was freaked out.

I still remember him wanting to buy a pair of white loafers. He asks,  “Do you have these in a size 13?”

I just responded without thinking.

“We don’t have 13’s,  the largest we  carry are 12’s.”

He said thanks, turned around and left the store. I think I said to my brother. “Why the hell don’t we carry size 13’s?”

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