Dallas Latos Interview: From San Diego to Cincinnati- My Baseball Story
Friday April 13th, 2012
MLB reports – Jonathan Hacohen: Get ready to be entertained today folks! With us today on MLB reports, we have the one and only, Dallas Latos. You may know Dallas from her famous Twitter account known as @DallasLatos and her Baseball Blog: So I Married a Baseball Player. Dallas is funny, sassy and no-nonsense. She tells it like it is and speaks from the heart. She is the better half of Mat Latos, formerly the ace pitcher of the San Diego Padres and now a member of the Cincinnati Reds. The trade went down in December of last year and will down as one of the biggest swaps in MLB history. We caught up recently with Mrs. Dallas Latos to talk life, baseball and everything in-between. To her time in San Diego to preparing for Cincinnati- Dallas gave us the straight goods on Latos Life! Get to know Dallas Latos- as our proud feature interviewee today on MLB reports:
Hello Dallas. Welcome to MLB reports. Thank you for joining us today. First question to start off: What’s it like to be a “baseball wife”?
Since I don’t know what it’s like to be any other kind of wife, it’s been a challenge. There are a lot of factors that make it difficult to maintain a healthy relationship but like in any other marriage, you work on it every day. Every baseball marriage is different so I don’t want to speak on behalf of anyone but myself but I make it a priority to make sure that Mat is stress free from anything that doesn’t pertain to the game during season. It sometimes feels like I sacrifice a lot for his dreams, but I know that he will do the same for mine when the time is right.
How did you meet Mat? Was it love at first sight? How long did you date before getting married?
Mat and I were introduced through mutual friends who were dating at the time. The two of them were my best friends from college, and one played in the minor leagues and became good friends with Mat there. My best friend, Lauren was constantly trying to play Cupid and get me to spend time with Mat while telling him that he needed to meet me because we’d be perfect together. I however, wanted nothing to do with a baseball player or an athlete, and wasn’t looking to be in a relationship in general so I dismissed the idea- Mat continued bugging Lauren to get me to talk to him. After about 2 years of me refusing to meet him, I found myself the third wheel on a date to see “Couples Retreat” with my two friends. Jokingly, I said, “Don’t you have any guy friends who could hang out with us so I don’t look like such a loser?!”, to which he responded, “I have ONE friend I’d even let you date and you won’t meet him so I don’t know what to tell you”. Me, “FINE… CALL HIM THEN”. So he did. Mat happened to be in Florida at the time but we started talking and text messaging constantly. I guess you can say it was love after a few days of text messaging that I wouldn’t actually admit to for some time down the road because I was still trying to be a tough girl who didn’t want a “boyfriend”. The more curious part is Mat sticking around to put up with my hard-headed antics. Realizing our relationship was turning into a relationship freaked me out so I took every chance I could to let him know that I wasn’t a push over and that I didn’t “need” him (meaning, I can take care of myself, your career and money mean nothing to me, your heart and your loyalty are all I want from you if we’re going to do this).
All of this happened in the offseason of 2009. He asked me to go to Spring Training and live with him in 2010 at which point, I agreed by maintaining the fact that I’m just a cab ride and a flight away from home. I figured this would be the make it or break it of our relationship and we made it. We were engaged on July 3rd, 2010, made these terribly cliché plans to get married on 11-11-11, and ended up getting married on 10-12-10 at the County recorder’s office in my home town. We intended to keep it a secret from everyone and still have a “wedding”. Mat made a HUGE mistake on a radio interview when asked, “What did you do this offseason?”, “Did some fishing, relaxed, got married”. GOT MARRIED?! Panicked that our family would find out from the press, we decided we had to confess. While everyone was happy FOR us, not everyone was happy WITH us. We resolved to have a vow renewal ceremony with our family and close friends which I should note has yet to happen. The fact that I’m not one of those girls who knew what her wedding dress was going to look like when she was 3 really doesn’t help. We also didn’t feel like we needed everyone to witness us having a wedding ceremony to know our commitment is real. We weren’t even really planning on getting married that day, we just woke up and did it.
How did you find the baseball wife lifestyle? Is it the glorious lifestyle as envisioned by most?
I’m not sure why people think it’s glorious. I feel extremely blessed to be able to support my husband following his dreams. From a lot of the negative comments I get on Twitter however, it seems that people have this idea that I sit around and spend Mat’s hard-earned money all day which is by no means the case. Maybe some other athlete’s wives do but I couldn’t even tell you where this notion came from. I personally feel like this lifestyle calls for being a super-wife who can juggle 8 million things on her own while chewing bubblegum and tap-dancing. The real super-wives of baseball though are the ones with children. It’s really hard on young kids to understand why Daddy’s always leaving after he’s been home every day for 5 or so months. I don’t know about that part yet though and am in no rush to find out!
Please give us a little background on your education/ work experience. What do you do for a living?
I attended Saint Mary’s college of California and got a B.S. in Business and Economics in 4 years. My senior internship with LightRiver Technologies turned into a full-time position after graduation where I worked partly in accounting and partly as the project manager for the IT department. I LOVED this job and working for this company. I was simultaneously doing contract business consulting, business event planning, and modeling on the weekends. I was living alone and single in the bay area so I devoted all hours I wasn’t sleeping to working. I was accepted to the Masters program at St. Mary’s and began studying for my MBA. Two semesters later, I realized this was silly. I learned more about business on the job than in the classroom and had no intentions of climbing the corporate ladder. I had some health issues and was under so much stress that I had to move home. As soon as I was healthy again, I decided to stay at home for a while and look for a job there. It felt nice to be back around family. I was hired as a bartender for an opening business. After many meetings with the owners, they realized my knowledge and experience in the industry was a way bigger asset than they could have imagined and basically gave me permission to manage and open the nightlife venue. I successfully turned a venue that had always failed in a small town into a business profiting $7-8000 in bar sales on a single weekend night. I also worked for a local business as an Executive Assistant and business consultant. I was on a break from this job when Mat and I met because my boss was on vacation abroad. Living at home and having all of this success afforded me to save a nice amount of money and not let Mat even buy me a diet coke for something like months! (He hated it).
What was life like in San Diego? How did you find the city and baseball team?
San Diego is a beautiful city. There’s still a lot of it we never got to see because we were there for work and you don’t get much time to soak it all in during season. It was really lonely for me when we first got there. I had never moved anywhere except to college. I didnt’ have a job or friends there and Mat was at work 9-10 hours a day. I learned how to make the best of it and went to about a billion baseball games where I made some great friends.
Walk us through how you found out about Mat’s trade. What was going through your mind?
I was asleep and Mat was awake around 10 am that day. I imagine I was having some sweet dreams when my mother burst in the room yelling, “Why didn’t you guys tell me you got traded to Cincinnati?!”. I say, “What? Mom, you’re INSANE! We didn’t get traded! I was sleeping! What are you DOING?!”. “Yes! Yes you did. It’s on ESPN”! We both sat straight up, panicked, and reached for our phones. Sure enough, I had 5 missed calls from Mat’s agent and about 37 text messages from the whole rest of the world who knew what was going on in our lives. We were so willing to bet that we wouldn’t get traded that we had signed a lease for the upcoming season in San Diego about a week before – that may put the shock in perspective. I’m pretty sure there is no way to describe how I felt or what I was thinking without just saying, “anything and everything”. It was surreal.
Have you been to Cincinnati before? What was your feelings about having to make the move?
I had a blast there last year. Take it from a real gypsy- home is where the husband is. I’m sure it will be great.
During the season, what percentage of the time are you and your husband together and how do you find the time apart?
I travel on the road with him a lot so we’re really only apart 9-10 hours a day while he’s at work. I don’t go on every single road trip but I’m pretty sure I go on more than most wives. I like traveling and I loathe sleeping alone.
I see that you are very active on Twitter. How did you come to find the social media and what has your experiences been like?
I had twitter before I started dating Mat. It’s a lot more annoying now because I not only get people bullying me but I also have to constantly worry about offending people. I just don’t say much about baseball and assume that any other social media commentary anyone chooses to be offended by is their personal problem. I may be a reflection on my husband’s choice to marry an intelligent woman with a mind of her own… but it ends there.
Do you ever get pressure from home or the team to limit what you say on Twitter?
It’s funny. I’ve gotten lectured multiple times as if I don’t know how this world works. If I say anything to directly raise controversy, odds are- I meant to do it. I know “wrong” from “right”. “Correct” from “Maybe I shouldn’t say that”… but I’m so schooled in this department, I can make a seemingly controversial statement and prevail on the winning side. People who doubt me fuel my fire. People who take my words out of context fuel my laughter.
Could you see yourself in the future on television on any reality shows, whether it be “Baseball Wives” or a show devoted to the Latos family exclusively?
I couldn’t even see myself having time for that or anyone giving a damn about what we do. We’re not attention seeking people. If it happens, it happens. It likely won’t. We are nerds.
We hear Mat loves body art- any particularly interesting pieces that only you know about? 😉
I may be one of the few people who know that those are my lips tattooed on his neck… But maybe not.
What is something about Dallas Latos that few people know…that you would like to share of course.
I don’t want anyone knowing anything about me. The assumptions people make are amusing enough.
What is the future of Dallas Latos? Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
The last time I tried to predict my future, I was traveling abroad and remaining single until I was at least 30. I’ll go ahead and say that making such projections is not my strong suit.
Last question: To all the Padres and Reds fans out there- what message would you like to send?
Let’s be friends!
***Thank you to Dallas Latos for joining us today on MLB reports. We wish Dallas and Mat the best of luck in Cinci and wherever their future baseball travels take them! Please check out the Dallas Latos Blog: So I Married a Baseball Player. You can follow Dallas on Twitter (@DallasLatos) – make sure to say hello and to let her know that MLB reports sent ya!***
Jonathan Hacohen is the Lead Baseball Columnist & Editor for MLB reports: You can follow Jonathan on Twitter (@JHacohen)
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