It was the third game of todays Yankees-Media Paintball Challenge, and the goal was to grab a bucket from the far end of the field and take it to the other team’s base.
Without being shot, of course.
Teammate Sweeny Murti had already gotten the bucket, and he was almost to the base when he was hit. Sweeny had to drop the bucket on the spot, so I decided to pick up where he left off. Grabbing the bucket on the way, I made a mad dash for the base. I was no more than four feet away, at a full sprint…
It was Kevin Long who got me. Four shots. Two to the chest. One to the side. One to the stomach.
I’m pretty sure I took the biggest beating today. I also have three welts on my left arm and one on my right leg – I honestly don’t remember being hit there — but we all had a great time this morning. Brian Cashman showed up with a camo hat that had a skull and crossbones on it. That’s when we knew it was serious.
My team captain was Bryan Hoch. My teammates — if I can remember them all — were Brett Weber, Billy Eppler, Jason Zillo, Michael Margolis, Marc Carig, Sweeny Murti and Mark Feinsand. I’m pretty sure Cashman took me out in the first game, but I’m also pretty sure I got Joe Girardi in the second. I know I got Erik Boland with a head shot in the fifth, which was a big win for Team Hoch. At one point, Tony Pena announced that anyone who didn’t shoot Mike Harkey was automatically eliminated. Harkey had a hard time hiding.
One bit of honesty as we move forward: My coverage of the Yankees scouting department might take a bitter turn for the next few weeks. I believe it was the fourth game and Eppler was behind me in a group of forts and trees. He decided to advance, and as he was sprinting, he accidentally pulled the trigger.
He drilled me in the back of the head from a dozen feet away.