Budding journalist gets feet wet at Nats game

Seal experiences pregame reporting routine thanks to SU2C auction

Budding journalist gets feet wet at Nats game

WASHINGTON -- For the superstitious among us, Friday the 13th represents bad luck and everything that could go wrong. But that's the opposite of what happened for Tiffany Seal.

The rising senior at Auburn University got the chance to be an MLB.com correspondent for the day, as she shadowed an MLB.com reporter Wednesday afternoon at Nationals Park. That just so happened to be the day that Nationals right-hander Max Scherzer tied a Major League record by striking out 20 batters in a nine-inning game. What are the odds?

Seal toured the press box, sat in on Nationals manager Dusty Baker's meeting with the media, spent some time on the field and in the dugout before the game and even got to witness breaking news unfold once Major League Baseball announced it was suspending Bryce Harper for one game for his actions following his ejection Monday night.

"This experience today was amazing, and it further enforced that I want to be in this business to write and to cover MLB," said Seal, a journalism major at Auburn. "I've learned a lot. It's been a great experience."

Major League Baseball, MLB Advanced Media, MLB Network and the 30 clubs teamed up to offer its fourth annual Winter Meetings charity auction that included more than 80 once-in-a-lifetime baseball experiences and items to raise awareness and funds for cancer research. A significant portion of the proceeds went to Stand Up To Cancer, a longtime partner of Major League Baseball, its founding donor in 2008. In addition, this year's auction benefitted Do It For Durrett, in honor of the late Texas Rangers ESPN.com beat writer Richard Durrett, who passed away suddenly last year, and the YouCaring page established for Miami Marlins Sun Sentinel beat writer Juan C. Rodriguez, who lost his battle with cancer a month after the 2015 auction.

So the opportunity was perfect for Seal, who is interested in a career in sports journalism. She works with the baseball team at Auburn, and she has written for the school newspaper and local paper.

"You just really have to make sure that you're constantly alert, even though you have a bunch of other things going on at the same time," Seal said of what the experience taught her. "You still need to have that pulse on what's going on underneath you in the clubhouse."

Once the pregame duties ended, Seal joined her family and friends in the stands at Nationals Park, where they treated to a historic pitching performance from right-hander Max Scherzer, who struck out 20 batters in the Nats' 3-2 victory.

Jamal Collier covers the Nationals for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @jamalcollier. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.