Rich Garcia

Episode 61

30 MAR 2020

A former Major League Baseball umpire, having worked in the American League for 25 years and been involved in four World Series.  He went on to be a MLB Supervisor for eight years. He was raised Catholic and is also a veteran, having spent four years in the U.S. Marine Corps.  In high school he played baseball and did some boxing, getting two baseball scholarship offers for college.  He also coached high school baseball.  Wait for his big revelation near the end of the interview!

Guest quotes:

“From first grade all the way to the ninth grade I went to a Catholic school.”

“My grandmother lived with us and she did most of the raising, thank God.  She was a saint.  Her nickname was Joan of Arc.  That was a great, great help for me, growing up.”

“Everybody else went fishing and swimming and stuff.  I just played ball.  I played baseball.”

“I knew I had God in my life.  I knew He was there.”

“When you go to Catholic school for that many years, you have that instilled — it’s in you.”

“The way things are today as far as the umpiring profession, the ministry has really, really grown.”

“They have phone calls every Friday.  They have a conference prayer call every Friday.  All the umpires that want to get on can get on.  The minor league umpires are also included in that.”

“As an umpire if you want to survive you better pray.  You need a lot of prayers.  There were a lot of times where I’d talk to God.  ‘Get me out of this jam.’  ‘Get me out of this city.’  ‘Get me out of this place.’  And, like most of us, very selfishly it was done when we needed Him.  Fortunately, I’ve grown to not only talk to God when I need Him… but, to do it every day.  And to keep Him close to me.  And I thank Him every morning for the blessings that He’s given us.”

“He showed me a lot of different ways to pray.  Showed me a lot of different ways to get close to God.”

“I’m really God-based right now.  I’m as high as I can be on our Lord.”

(This episode contains a prayer attributed to legendary Notre Dame football coach Knute Rockne, as seen in Play Like A Champion Today’s prayerbook for sports, God, Be In My Sport)