06/11/2002 8:46 pm ET
Father's Day story showed real Kile
By Matthew Leach / MLB.com
Cardinals right-hander Darryl Kile, who died Saturday at age 33, was a father of three. His twin son Kannon and daughter Sierra are five, and his son Ryker Davis was born last August. On Monday, June 10, in celebration of Father's Day, he sat down with MLB.com to discuss the experience of fatherhood and how it relates to his career in baseball. What became apparent was his dedication to his family and his desire to see his children attack life ... to take the ball every fifth day, as he would say.
MLB.com: What has changed the most for you, personally and professionally, since you became a father?
Darryl Kile: I think the changes for the better are, now that my family's grown a little bit, when I go home after a game, it's easier to forget the bad ones. My kids and my wife help me enjoy things other than baseball.
MLB.com: How have your priorities changed? Has parenthood put the game more in perspective?
Kile: I don't think my priorities have changed. I just think my free time is spent differently. I look forward to days off when I can hang out around the house, take the kids somewhere or do something like that, a lot more than I used to.
MLB.com: How is your kids' childhood different from yours?
Kile: I hope not a whole lot. I think it's different in that I'm gone a lot. Now that they're old enough, they kind of understand that I go but I always come back. The difference, I would guess, is the time away, more than anything.
MLB.com: Your oldest are both five. Are they playing any sports yet?
Kile: They're just kids. They just like playing. The funnest games we play are games we kind of invent. They have a baseball kind of feel, but we just kind of make up our own games. Over the line, and number of catches and stuff like that. Just fun games and hopefully the kids enjoy playing them.
MLB.com: Would you like to see them become pro athletes?
Kile: If that's what they want. I just want them to be happy and I want them to enjoy doing whatever they pick to do. Hopefully, whatever they decide to do when they grow up, they do it hard, and they take the ball every five days. What I mean by that is, I hope they go after it and get what they want.
MLB.com: How do you make the balance work between the dedication to baseball and dedication to your family?
Kile: I think you just kind of re-allocate your free time. I think the amount of time that you have to spend to stay ready to go and stay healthy and be able to compete is the same. But the time that I had off before, I would do different things than I do now.
MLB.com: What do you do similarly and differently as compared to your father?
Kile: I think that one of the coolest things my dad and I had was, we were friends. He was always showing me different things and I'd ask him questions, and if he didn't know the answer we'd go work it out together, we'd go look it up. That meant a lot to me. So hopefully as my children grow up, I'll be able to help them learn things more than tell them what to do.
MLB.com: How much have you brought them into your life in baseball? How do you want the game and your job to be a part of their lives?
Kile: I don't know. I just think that if they're curious or interested in what I do, I'd like to show them what I do. If they're excited to come to work with dad, just like any other little kid is excited to go to work with dad, I like to bring them around and let them see where I work. I just think it's a situation where, if they show interest in it, you want them to have fun and enjoy the game like I did when I was younger.
Matthew Leach covers the Cardinals for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.