My brother Ryan made a great speech at my wedding last month, and I've got a copy of his notes. This is an excerpt from his speech in which he tells the tale of "the game we always play" and "the game we almost always play".
I recall a baseball game we made up and I believe it was Mike who named this game "the game we always play". Months later, we revised the game and renamed it "the game we almost always play" and for years it became the game we always played... almost every day.
Despite that fact, I'd still hear Mike yell out "who wants to play the game we almost always play?". In hindsight, we had an astounding lack of imagination for names and it's just funny how we always played the game we "almost always play" instead of "the game we always play".
He also named our home plate Herman and I vividly recall the day he went missing. We had a big backyard and I'd spend hours outside searching for this piece of wood. It took a long time before I gave up and it just speaks to how much I looked up to Mike... him naming that base Herman made it special.