Thursday, May 22, 2008

Long Day

It was a long day on multiple fronts. On the Major League side we experienced two bad injuries to Chris Young and Josh Bard within a matter of minutes. Scary injuries, such as these, are always the worst. Fortunately, it appears as though both guys are going to escape without anything too serious, or at least as serious as they could have been. We will have to make some player moves tomorrow to ensure that we have enough pitching and catching going forward. In-game injuries, especially to members of the battery, always set off a flurry of activity within the front office. Kevin Towers was working throughout the night in concert with a number of others in our organization to decide on the player moves. Then the players must be located (not always as easy as it sounds), told, AND get to San Diego in time for tomorrow's game.

On the amateur scouting front, I just returned to my hotel room after 38 innings of baseball (the first game went 11 innings - a bad omen for the rest of the day). Those 38 innings fell just shy of 16 hours to play. I don't care how much you love the game, that's a lot of baseball for one day. The first 7th inning stretch of the day occured around noon time, and the fourth 7th inning stretch, yes the fourth one, was at 1:25 AM. Trust me, mid-inning pitching changes were not welcome as the evening turned into night and night turned into morning.

Every spring I have a handful of early flights, lengthy drives, hotels, and long days at the ballpark, but our scouts do it all the time. At this time of the year they are drained, yet there they were tonight grinding out the fourth game of the day until almost 2 AM local time. They'll all be there again tomorrow bright and early ready for another quadruple header... all except for one of our guys, who has a 6:40 AM flight in order to catch a different set of games across the country.

Being a baseball scout may sound like a lot of fun, but believe me (or believe them) it's a tough gig.


Corey Ettinger said...

Its a tough gig a lot of people would like to have though. How does one go about becoming a scout?

Unknown said...

Mostly you need a connection to get in to start. Usually this is someone you met while playing or a friend of the family. Most scouts are former players but not all. You could always try scouting school but the best are hard to get into. Take MLB's, I believe you have to be sponsored by a MLB franchise to get in which obviously isn't easy to come by.

You generally start as a bird dog sending in small reports and tips to the higher up guys so when they come through your town they know who they should watch (they already know the big names usually but some guys slip through the cracks). Once you impress someone enough or find 2 or 3 gems, you might get a shot somewhere.

As far as your long day Paul, believe me I feel for you. I've never been to 4 games in one day but I've done 3. I intern for the Sports Marketing Department at West Virginia University and some of the double headers we have played have been just brutal to watch. Playing 2 against Coppin State and then having to work another event on top of that makes for a long day. Nothing against Coppin State, they were much better this year, but those are some long games generally speaking.

the stat rat said...

Ok - but you gotta admit, Virginia-UNC was at least an exciting game. And Alex White really settled in (11 punchies!). Lots of times, those that fourth game is a total clunker.

Question: is the new ACC Tournament format (well, second year) better for scouts? For four days, you know who is going to be playing and when. You're guaranteed to get at least three looks at everyone in the league. As opposed to the traditional double-elimination?

Anonymous said...

Along with the obvious horrors of injuries, last night's game highlighted our lack of long relief. Is there any consideration being given to picking up Baek, since the Mariners designated him?

Josh Elwell said...

Michael Barrett & Clay Hensley are my predictions for who come up. As for another prediction, the influx of rookies KT is hinting at won't come until next month.

If anyone is interested in a prediction of 5 worse things that could happen this season - check out

Josh Elwell said...

Assuming my other post is posted, looks like I blew that prediction of Barrett & Hensley.

I do appreciate not rushing Barrett out of rehab, though.

It'll be interesting to see who gets starts, moving forward, with Peavy & Young on the DL, and 2 members of our relief corp being able to start a game (Banks & Germano).

Eric Clark said...

I love baseball. But not THAT much.

I always thought being a scout would be an awesome job, but when you think about the reality of watching hour after hour after hour of mediocre baseball just to see what ten kids are going to do, it starts to peel back the glamorous veneer a bit. Then again, sitting at a desk pushing paper all day isn't so much fun either...

I would have liked to be a fly on the wall at the meeting when it was decided that Josh Banks would be called up in CY's absense. That seemed like an odd call, but I'm sure there's a lot of thought that goes into it that the average (or even avid) fan would consider.

Maybe you could shed some light on what those player personnel meetings are like in a future post?

tad swifty said...

wife and I used to sit behind a couple of scouts at cashman field and they looked like guys at work. they never talked but they sure took their notes.