My cousins are idiots. We have always had a rivalry between us but it became more intense when I moved to the other side of town. They both go to North High and I go to Westside.
They like to call it the rich side but that’s not really true. It’s just better than where we used to live. Me and my mom moved after my father died. He left us a lot of money. Money we had no idea about. He had insurance policies that totaled over $850,000. My mom was stunned.
So we moved to a better house and I went to a better high school. My cousins, Jason and Isaac, started calling me “Rich Boy.” I knew they were a little jealous but it really didn’t bother me much.
The only thing that sucks is that we play them twice a year. Our family has always been big baseball fans. My father played for UCLA but never got drafted. He played single A ball for a while and then I showed up. He gave up baseball and went to work to support his family.
Isaac’s dad played junior college ball but that was it. Jason’s dad never did much of anything.
Every time we play against each other they try to make a big deal about it. In my three years of high school I have never lost to them. That’s the good thing. The bad thing is that each year our relationship gets more and more strained.
The last time we played against each other I had to throw at Jason and nearly hit him in the head. Jason never learns. He is always trying to use force. He is always trying to hit a home run. He doesn’t think things through.
It was the second inning before he came up to bat. As usual he was crowding the plate. I don’t care who you are, that is my plate, I own it and nobody is going to take that away from me. I threw one low and inside just to send a message. He ignored it and came right back crowding the plate. My next pitch headed straight for his ear. Luckily, he moved out of the way and ended up on his back.
He jumped up and I thought he was going to rush the mound.
“Don’t even think about it,” I yelled.
“Try that one more time,” he said.
I struck him out with a ball low and outside that had him swinging wildly at nothing. He went 0-for-4 that game and didn’t talk to me for a week.