Dallas Keuchel's girlfriend Mackenzie Valk works for a business called Golden Sport Collectibles that specializes in 24 karat gold baseballs that are usually signed by well-known baseball players. The business is also sponsored or owned by Rawlings, whose name is displayed prominently at the top of their logo. I'm not sure exactly who started the business, but with a spokesperson like Mackenzie Valk, they could do alright in the Houston area.
Mackenzie herself released a short video promoting one of the baseballs signed by Christian Yelich. Dallas Keuchel's girlfriend appears to be as sweet as can be and says something to the effect of "If you like gold baseballs follow Golden Sport Collectibles, and if you like blondes who like baseball, follow me." In this day of social media marketing, I guess you've gotta' put a little pep into your Twitter spots.
One of the most interesting things she posted was a picture of long panels of what appears to be strips of leather that have been painted gold. Now, this whole 24 karat baseball thing is sort of suspect to me, because it leads me to wonder if they are actually using gold dust to put on these baseballs. If they are, isn't that sort of a ridiculous use of gold? I mean, what if you need the gold back one day? How do you get it off of your goofy collectible baseball so that you can barter for food? Or do you just use the baseball itself as gold currency?
Mackenzie spends a lot of time at baseball games cheering on her boyfriend and the team in general. I sort of wonder if it's not a drag for some women to have to go to the games when their boyfriend is a pitcher and doesn't play most of the time. Like, I get that she's a fan, but that's a massive time commitment if you're hitting up most of the home games. Mackenzie spends a good deal of time in New York City as well, and it likely has to do with her job at Golden Sport Collectibles, but maybe she just has friends or family there. She'll often go there and say that she'd rather be in Houston cheering on Mr. Keuchel.
Jeff Luhnow's wife Gina Luhnow is a big fan of Jose Altuve and the 'Stros in general, based on her Twitter feed. I think about 90-95% of everything you'll find there is her talking about the team and the players, and it often revolves around Jeff in some way. It's interesting to see how often a general manager can be talked about as it relates to the team. I guess the guys behind the scenes really do matter.
The couple was married in January of 2012, and Gina was formerly Gina Hagopian living in Los Angeles at the time (where she was born). It was a hectic time, as she stated in an interview, after Jeff got the job for Houston because it was right around the time of their wedding, and while Jeff Luhnow's wife Gina Luhnow started planning for their wedding, Jeff began living in a hotel in Houston and working as the GM. It still annoys me that American weddings take so long to plan, but I guess in America every princess has to have her princess day.
Gina described growing up in a family where her dad worked extremely hard as a businessman, and she says, "the harder Jeff works, the more inclined I am to do everything possible to keep his personal life happy and calm." She'll have to juggle keeping two people happy and calm now, because Gina and Jeff just had a baby boy in September of last year. His name's Henry Luhnow. She still attends many of the home games with baby Henry though, and she's taken a lot of pictures with him sitting next to his dad during the games. She calls them "the braintrust." During the summer, Jeff's kids from his previous marriage spend time with Gina and Jeff and occasionally go on road trips with Jeff and the team. Gina says if she's not at a game, she's watching it on television. That's a pretty huge commitment for a sport that takes like 4 hours per game.