This interview of Grant Buckner was conducted in February 2012 when Grant was part of the Chicago White Sox MiLB system. He was part of the White Sox organization from June 2011 to November 2014. While the questions here do not deal with sports memorabilia directly, his answers about his life in baseball are interesting, nonetheless.
1.) Where were you / what were you doing when you were drafted?
I was with my best friend, Matt Fisher, at my sister’s apartment with her and her husband. Out of all the days possible, the electricity decided to go out at my parents’ house so I began frantically searching for a place to watch the draft. Luckily, my sister’s place was available.
2.) Who were a couple of your favorite baseball players when you were a kid?
Growing up, I was an absolute die-hard Atlanta Braves fan. Chipper, Andruw Jones, Fred McGriff, Greg Maddux, Tom Glavine, etc. I never missed a game. But, as far as favorite players go, Chipper Jones and Alex Rodriguez will be my all time favorite players. Still to this day, I try my best to emulate their respective games.
3.) Who are your closest friends in baseball right now?
Chris Enourato, former WVU Closer, is my closest friend in baseball. He played a year with the Toronto Blue Jays and is now playing in the Frontier League with the Gateway Grizzlies. As far as my closest friends in the Chicago White Sox organization, they would have to be Michael Johnson, Kevan Smith, and Andrew Virgili. All three of us began our careers together this summer for the Bristol White Sox. Johnson is an infielder drafted out of Samford University in Alabama. Many WVU fans would frown on the fact that Kevan Smith and I have become such close friends because he was a star catcher on the Pitt baseball team. We were actually roommates all summer and still remain close. Virgili is from Tampa, FL and was drafted out of Division II Lynn University.
4.) Since being drafted, who have you met that made you realize you were with a big league organization?
Without a doubt, it’s my manager this past summer with the Bristol White Sox, Pete Rose Jr. I became extremely close with him working with him every day on hitting, playing different infield positions, and just life in general. I give him a lot of credit for making my adjustment to professional baseball a successful one. I have remained close with him during the off season and look forward to working with him this upcoming season.
5.) What is something that most fans would be surprised to learn about you?
One thing would have to be how much I have been able to travel in my life. My goal is one day be able to say Ive been inside every Major League Baseball teams stadium. Currently, I have been to about half of the MLBs stadiums. Another thing about me would have to be I was at the 2006 Rose Bowl National Championship between Texas and USC. I went because I had won a free trip by playing sports trivia on my cell phone. AT&T awarded me with free air fare, two tickets to the game, two VIP passes to the game, 3 night stay in the Hollywood Hilton, limousine service everywhere, and spending money. It truly was a once in a lifetime trip.