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Getting personal with a baseball scout

The plan was to get into the mind of baseball scouts, take what they have to share and put it in a book to give  to the baseball community! Here is a preview.

A few weeks ago, I had the honor of getting to know a little bit about Advanced Scout Jim Thrift. I wanted to keep things simple and ask him what- in my mind were the most important questions.

Here they are.

1. What is your baseball background? 

2. How long have you been a scout? 

3. What is your favorite part about being a scout? 

4. What is the first thing you notice about a position player 

5.What is the first thing you notice about a pitcher? 

6. What’s your opinion of long-toss? 

7. What is the best way for young players to make the adjustment to the next level, wether it’s to division one colleges or the minor leagues? 

 Jim Thrift

I have been in professional baseball for 27 years. Started as a minor league coach and manager in 1986 and by 2001 I was an extra coach in the Major Leagues for the Reds. In 2002 I became a Major League scout and from there went on to be a National Crosschecker evaluating amatuer players. In 2009 I joined the Orioles as there Major League advance scout.I have been scouting now for over 10 years on all levels.

I enjoy the evaluation process on all levels, finding the next talent and trying to determine who has the best make up to play in the big leagues. The first thing I notice about a position player is his athleticism, this can be seen. I watch for speed, strength , power and balance. I look for the same in pitchers. I then study the players dedication,, work ethic and most importantly his desire to achieve, because this will separate him in times of adversity.

Many achieve on talent, only those with desire stay. It’s important for young players to play at a level just above their current level of talent, they need to be challenged once they have proven they can dominate their current level. They also must maintain a solid work ethtic and develop all the tools needed to play at the next level, offense, defense, baserunning, and finally, learn and understand how to play the game properly.