From the Scout Seats

As we attended the game last sunday, we had the chance to sit in the “Scout Seats” at Great American Ballpark. We decided that it would be not only interesting but beneficial for the blog to chat it up with these scouts from around the National League. Here’s what we heard….

There I was sitting in the scout seats and all the sudden I spotted them. One had a radar gun, the others friviously working over their notes and on the cell phone. Yes, that one scout in the black shirt whom I will reveal later was spitting dip into a coffee cup. I would have liked to ask him which flavor he prefferred, but there were more important baseball questions to be asked. I had to get a closer look and see what they were writing down on those clipboards.

That scout was indeed a longtime advanced scout of the San Francisco Giants. More on him later, but also there was a scout for the Cincinnati Reds, the Arizona Diamondbacks, and an American league team of which I could not find out.

I wanted to pick the brain of the scout nearest me, after taking a seat behind 3 of the scouts taking notes, I struck up a conversation with the 4th scout sitting to my right, who didn’t seem to be writing anything, he was just watching the action.

The first thing I heard him say when I was fighting off urges to talk, was when Marcus Mcbeth (pictured above) allowed a duck fart single just over the shortstop Alex Gonzalez’s head.

“Motherfucker gives up more lame, cheap ass hits,” said the perturbed scout.

“Are you here looking for a certain player?” I asked him.

“I am a scout for the Reds. I have been for a long time. I work for the club,” he said, showing me his scout pass with the Reds logo. This was cool for me. I wanted to ask him questions all day but he gave me the feeling he wasn’t going to get into a long conversation. I did what I could.

What do you think of Homer Bailey thus far?

“He’s got great stuff, but his control is just off. He’s so young, he’s got the talent to be great but he just didn’t have it out there today. You’re going to have that with a lot of young guys early on in their careers, where they are great one start and not the next. He’s going to be fine, he’s going to be good.”

Are the Reds happy with Josh Hamilton’s performance so far this season? Is the organization pleased with him?

“Yeah, they’re really high on him. Absolutely. They think they found a gem in the rough in this guy. He should technically be in the minor leagues. To do what he’s done at the Major League level so far has been impressive to everyone in the organization.”

With that he got up before I could get into the juicy questions and he headed for the hills.

“I’m going to go get a better view.”

So with that I took it as, leave me alone kid. You’re cramping my style.

The next guy I wanted to talk to was indeed that Giants scout. I tapped him on the shoulder and he didn’t look over. I tapped him again and he finally looked over.

“Are you here looking at position players, or arms?” I asked him.

“I’m here looking at both.”

“Did you see anything you like?” I asked.

“Yeah but all the guys I see that I like they wouldn’t give up,” said the scout, dipping into his coffee cup.

The thing I noticed about all these scouts as they took notes on their clipboard, they write so small. It must be in the job description that as a scout you are able to write so small that only you can read the writing in a given area. Beyond that, they took notes on seemingly every play, and every at-bat. I could have sat and read those notes all day but I didn’t get the chance to.

So what do you think about Dunn? Is he on the move?
“I have no idea really. If I had to guess, I’d say they would probably try and move him; so yeah.”

How about Josh Hamilton, what do you think of him?
“I like him a lot. I can tell you this, he’s one of those guys, that if he were available, I’d want him in a heartbeat. That said, he’s not available so it’s not worth me discussing. He’s going to be very good.”