by BV Gonzalez
When I first saw Taylor Vines play softball…, I knew she was the kind of player that could change a team. I’m not impressed very often when it comes to players, teams, or coaches.
There are very very few people in the game that impress me. Taylor did not impress me as a player, she did not impress me as a performer, but where she blew me away was with her energy, her effort, her focus, and her positive vibes and attitude. She was small but fast…
and her desire to learn and improve was faster and stronger than she was. I have had great players that were good kids, with beautiful hearts and wonderful personalities before.
Many kids like that, but Taylor’s energy was different…, It was Turbo Super Charged, and the effort that poured out of her at practice and training inspired everyone around her including me.
I had to give her the nickname of “Crackbaby”, because she never slowed down even when she was out of gas! She would just sigh, take a deep breath and Bammm… She was off at full speed again. I literally sweated and got tired watching her go !!!
After getting to know Taylor as a person, away from the game, she impressed me as a kind hearted, loving, respectful young lady. My family immediately fell in love with her, My wife RosaElia enjoyed her company and loved having her over all those nights when she was training.
My son even had his 1st crush on Taylor. I remember him telling me…“Dad she is so Beautiful and so So Nice”. Lol, Indeed Taylor is a Great Looking Young Lady, but what makes her so Lovable is her genuine love and respect for people. (Great Job Mom)
I remember, Our team was playing at the Hall of Fame Qualifier in Temple, Tx. We were in the Championship Game with 2 outs in the 7th inning, all we needed was 1 more out to win the qualifier and head to Oklahoma City and play in the National Hall of Fame Championships.
There was a foul ball hit toward the left field foul fence behind 3rd base. I jumped off of the bucket and kept yelling “Go get it”. Taylor was at short stop and she flew like a rocket and made a diving backhand Championship winning catch… I jumped up like 3ft up in the air and ran out on to the field to celebrate. Great memories with great people sacrificing much of themselves to achieve greatly with others.
Our Angel team was despised by many in our area, and kids from Midland like Taylor were chastised for playing on this team. They came to understand that daring to be great often comes with much ridicule and hate. She took it in stride and continued to work hard and improve her game.
In Houston one year at the Ronald McDonald Showcase, Taylor made play after play, stole some bases, and saved some pitcher’s butts with her great defense.
The more I saw her play, the more special she became. One of our last tournaments, We played in Oklahoma City, where we were struggling vs some great competition.
We had lost our 1st two games and going into bracket play, We needed a win and while we were getting ready to play a powerhouse of a team, everyone’s confidence was shaken. Taylor proceed to make 10 outstanding plays, one right after another in crucial situations to get us out of innings.
Coming up to bat she delivered a line drive single to leftfield, which got our 2, 3, and 4th hitters going and We beat one of the strongest teams there going away, by a score of 5-1. Her competitive spirit ignited us and carried us to Victory in that big game.
Sadly, I didn’t get to watch too many of her college games but I did make a few and she amazed me on how she just continued her amazing out put of energy and effort.
Taylor Vines became Taylor Montes and her husband seems to be a great young man. We don’t get to see her much anymore, but when I heard of her illness, We prayed and prayed and the Good Lord has blessed her with another day and more and more of a future. Taylor still has a way to go and I am so thankful that she is getting better.
My family and I went to her birthday party at the hotel in lubbock and I honestly didn’t know how bad off she was, until then. Most people would have given up…, but not Taylor…, She Impressed me on how great of an inspiration she is to anyone who knows her and I honestly don’t know how she does it because most people just don’t know how hard it is to get back up, when you can’t physically do it …
It’s like asking a person to fly …
Well people just can’t fly…
Everyone knows that you can’t fly, so why try? Taylor is the type of person that is flying right before our eyes and although it’s very hard and painful for her to do, She is doing it because God chose her for this trial and she delivering a Godly Testimonial and so for one, I am listening and praising the strength of her faith, and We all can learn from it and be inspired by her Angelic Courage.
God Bless You Taylor and please know that when you feel alone and down…, and you feel that no one cares,
That you have many people behind you, that support you, love you, and here for you. Sometimes people don’t want to intrude or wear out their welcome, so they stay away. Just know that any time you need a friend or a shoulder, You have an Army of Angels on call…
I love You Crackbaby!