The other side of the Winter Meetings

There are a couple other sides to the winter meetings that you guys don’t usually get to hear about, read about or see, so I figured I’d share them with you this morning. My day started early – 7 a.m. to be exact – as I met with a group of students from Indiana University, my alma mater.

A huge portion of the people at the meetings are young students or people right out of college seeking jobs in baseball. There’s a huge job fair in which hundreds of minor league teams (and some big league clubs) hire employees for the upcoming season. Chris Haydock, our assistant director of player development, and I, both went to school at IU and a group of kids who came down asked to meet with us so we gladly spent some time chatting with them about how to crack into the industry.

After that, I had breakfast with two former Dodger colleagues, Tom Seidler and Dan Simon. Tom, whose mother was a co-owner of the Dodgers with the O’Malleys, owns the Visalia Oaks, a minor league team in that town. Dan, who used to design all sorts of merchandise and other things at the Dodgers, now owns his own company called Studio Simon, which is responsible for designing a huge portion of minor league logos, brand identities and the like. Not surprisingly, he actually designed all the logos for the Winter Meetings, too.

Dan has a booth at the trade show here and Tom came to see many of his clients at the trade show, which is another huge portion of what goes on behind the scenes. Every imaginable promotional company, bat maker, bobblehead creator, etc. is here trying to get baseball teams to utilize their services for the coming season.

Anyway, those are two sides of the meetings that rarely get any attention, so I figured you might enjoy hearing about it. Stay tuned for more news later today.

6 Comments

Another typical Dodger offseason!Colletti’s worried he might have to overpay Maddux a couple of million dollars if that’s if he lost in a abritration hearing.In this day and age isn’t worth the money to receive the highly touted draft picks? With the Dodgers soooo concerned with the value of there prospects through the draft why wouldn’t pile up the draft picks? Whats the worst that can happen ,we get Maddux for another year?,OH NO we wouldn’t want that to happen! Instead let him go to the division rival so he can beat us 3 or 4 times this year with no draft compensation! I am not a big Maddux fan by no stretch of the imagination but this is fast becoming a depressing and uneventful Dodger offseason! We will be worse off than last year believe me! The Dodgers are going to overpay for Schmidt if they get him that’s if they get him and why on earth would he want to goto LA with that gaping hole in the middle of the lineup?Hey, I got an idea lets put a strike out machine(Kemp) or a Senior citizen(Gonzalez) there that should solve all the Dodger problems save them all that money from maddux’s ,Drews, and Gagnes contracts and propel them to the World Series in 2007! That’s on Xbox or playstation3 your choice because it won’t be in the real world!!!!!!!!

some news a. jones would waive his no trade clause for a trade with the dodgers, but what would he cost.? L.A.is said to be asking about baldelli, hildago, and thames could be had for he right deal(brewers talks with tb for baldelli for thames and young pitching)
about dinner time tonight most g. m. will start saying,

didn,t make any moves now, but we layed the ground works for future deals.

the whole meetings are moving slow. good luck today ned, signing a free agent or making a trade that would make all of us who blog happy whould be very hard to do, with our varied thoughts on who we need, and at what cost.

hey josh, how old are you?..where u at IU when steve alford and bobby knight won it all last?

bigblue48, I live in Madras oregon, an hour north of Bend, also home of jacoby ellsbury future centerfielder of boston. I go to Eugene several times a year for meetings, have to get together and talk dodgers.

See “The Case For Gagne” on my blog (Words From The Park @ park.mlblogs.com). Basically, I think there are good reasons to believe he will be healthy in 2007 and with Dodger starters not able to pitch deep into games, a strong bullpen is a must. He has tremendous upside and I believe he is worth the risk. If the Dodgers sign Gagne for what he’s asking for and you factor in Saito and Broxton’s salaries, the Dodgers would be lights out after the 6th inning for less than $7M. Even if Gagne were to get hurt again, you’ll still be getting your money’s worth with Broxton and Saito. Anyway, some things to think about….

John – if you make that case and Gagne is signed, he owe’s Broxton & Saito a nice steak dinner for doing all the work last season :)

Josh – nice to hear about the “other” side. I’m a journalism student nearing the end of my education and you can bet that somewhere in MLB is where I’d like to land a job. I’ve already sent in internship applications with the other “Los Angeles” team. Would have sent some in for the Dodgers of course but I didn’t see any opportunities on the job boards.

Where do you recommend somebody like I start when it’s time?

Also, I read Sam Walker’s Fantasyland last year which introduced me to the winter meetings and their job candidates. A funny look on it if you haven’t read it. Great book.

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