MLB Barometer: Risers & Fallers
MLB Barometer: Risers & Fallers

This article is part of our MLB Barometer series.

I had a lot of great teachers in high school.

I didn't know it at that time, of course, but looking back, I wish I had made a point to thank them upon graduating instead of walking out of school the morning after graduation eager to forget most of the people I had seen over those four years.

When I was 15, I thought my World History teacher, Mr. Kaczmarek, was a complete hard-ass.

Looking back on it now, he was a damn good teacher.

In addition to teaching world history, "Kaz" was the golf coach at my high school, a school that lacked recent hardware in the trophy case. Most of the contents of that case were from an era when the city had only one public high school, and by the time I set foot at Waukesha South High School, the city had three. One of the most more recent state championship trophies was from the Boys' Golf team in 1989.

One day during my sophomore year, I took the liberty of putting my head down on my desk for a quick nap while Kaz was showing our class the film 'Tora! Tora! Tora!'. Being a know-it-all, I thought I had World War II all figured out, so dozing off for 30 minutes would be just fine.

A few minutes after closing my eyes, my desk rattled in the wake of a loud thud.

I looked up to see Kaz staring at me, with the most disapproving look

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Derek VanRiper
Derek is the Director of Media for RotoWire.com, where he's been a two-time finalist for the FSWA's Baseball Writer of the Year award, and winner of the Best Football Article on the Web (2009) and Best Baseball Article on the Web (2010) awards. Derek also co-hosts RotoWire's shows on SiriusXM Fantasy Sports Radio (XM 87, Sirius 210).
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