I was kind of surprised when the Rangers called up No. 1 prospect Jurickson Profar late last season, but apparently manager Ron Washington insisted after hearing a story from Profar’s minor league days that led Wash to believe Profar to be the kind of good-natured, kind-hearted soul that would have a positive clubhouse impact down the stretch.
You see, there was a youth baseball academy not far from the Rangers’ AA team in Frisco, and the minor leaguers would often stop by to sign autographs for the young kids, many of them in their early teens or younger, and offer informal coaching advice. Profar, being only a teenager himself, took a particular liking to the kids and was disturbed to hear that funding shortfalls had caused the camp’s dormitories to fall into a state of disrepair. It wasn’t unsafe, but the air conditioning was intermittent and the camp had been unable to buy new beds for some years. In fact, the boys at the camp had begun to suffer fatigue and on-field injuries more easily as a result of not sleeping well.
Profar, when made aware of the camp’s plight, ordered new, softer, more comfortable bedding at the cost of several thousand dollars of his own money.
When word got back to Washington, the Rangers’ manager was touched by Profar’s generosity and insisted that he be called up if for no other reason than to reward him for being a good guy.
In other words, Profar got his cup of coffee when he proffered puffy cots.