MARION - Parkway Estates is proud of its newest resident, Miners outfielder Sean Harrell. Their appreciation is all over the front desk.
"It's like a shrine," Harrell said. "They have a Miners T-shirt, a picture of my headshot from the website, and then any clipping that has my name in it from the newspaper, it's all plastered over the wall. You walk in, it's like, all behind the front desk. They've just posterized me."
Harrell, a rookie out of Georgia College and State University, signed with the Miners in May. He was originally assigned a host family in Cobden, about 35 minutes away from Rent One Park. Harrell, not trying to be difficult, asked if there was anything available closer to Marion. Terra Brenner, the team's marketing coordinator in charge of client services, found the 24-year-old a new home.
With 42 roommates. Curious roommates.
"When I introduced him over to the residents, they all had questions for him, so they just went around," Brenner said. "One of the ladies asked him if he had a girlfriend. He said, ‘Yeah, I have a girlfriend.' And then another one asked, ‘Does she live here?'"
The affection has gone both ways this season. Harrell was second on the team in hitting entering Friday's doubleheader with Florence with a .344 average. In 46 games, he has scored 31 runs and stolen 15 bases, second only to leadoff hitter Eric Suttle. Five to eight residents attend every Miners home game, Harrell said, with a few more a good bet to ask how the season is going whenever he's out walking around.
"Usually by the time I get home from the games, everybody's crashed, and, you know, asleep, but anything I want to do, it's always there for me," Harrell said. "If I want to interact, everything is there for me."
If he doesn't want to interact, there's coffee 24 hours a day, the occasional treat and his very own apartment to hide out in. Harrell's room features his own kitchen, cable TV and his own bathroom. A guest room is available for anyone that wants to come visit.
"At first, a lot of the guys were skeptical, you know, ‘What is this place like?'" Harrell said. "But after coming over, ‘This place is awesome.'"
No other Miner can say he has 42 grandparents looking after him every day.
"We call them his host grandparents," said Parkway Estates manager Donna Cobb, who updates the shrine whenever Harrell makes the papers. "I guess I'm his mom."
On Twitter: @Todd_Hefferman