Ian Nelson Remembers McEver Field


Doc Ellithorpe grooms the infield.

When I was thirteen, Mike Mittelman made me feel like a major league ball player.  Those summer evenings in Davidson, out of habit, I would bend over to gather a handful of dirt, and as I started to rub the sandy earth between my bare hands, Mr. Mittelman would announce to the thick summer night from his press box perch above McEver field, “Number 7, Ian Nelson.”  Right foot dug into the batter’s box, left foot poised outside the chalked line, I would look down the third base line at Coach Case.  A touch to the brim of his hat, then to his left forearm, and finally a swipe across his chest; ok, hit away.  And we would, we would hit and field and slump and rally and try to escape from the relentless march towards growing up.