The latest post from Team Travel Manager Scott Akasaki…
I am in amazement at the volume of e-mails, text messages, and cell phone calls I make throughout the course of a typical work day. Like other professions, the advent of the BlackBerry has transformed the speed at which the Major League Baseball traveling secretary can conduct business. Flights, hotel reservations, rental cars, ticket requests, and any other special handling can now be managed with one’s wireless device. I happen to use the BlackBerry Pearl and I pray that it always has battery life and the keys do not malfunction.
Last night at a postgame dinner, I wondered out loud how the traveling secretary’s job was done without a cell phone or e-mail as recent as 15 years ago. Joe Torre said that with the improvements in communication (cell phone, e-mail, text messages, fax machines, etc.) player moves (promotions, send downs, rehab assignments) occur with more frequency and rapidity than ever before. Research would probably support the theory that player movement is more prevalent now than in the decades before.
The other night when we called up Clayton Kershaw from Jacksonville, his travel arrangements (and the communication to get him the proper information) were all made through e-mail and text messages. His travel was booked and the information was given to him in less than 30 minutes — all this while I was in Denver and he was on a bus headed toward Jacksonville. A grasp of technology has certainly given those in professional baseball the freedom to move at a much more rapid pace.