BUSINESS WRAPS UP WITH EL, ALL-STAR HOST MEETINGS
by Rob Egan
(Lake Buena Vista, FL) – In addition to being the final day the trade show floor is open, Wednesdays at the Baseball Winter Meetings are annually centered around the Eastern League meeting.
The gathering of executives from the twelve Eastern League franchises covers issues related to league rules, awarding of future All-Star Games, presentations from mutual vendors, and updates from Minor League Baseball executives. On that front, there wasn’t a lot of news to report. However, it was a chance for us to update the rest of the league on our plans for the EL All-Star Stop.
While I was the mouthpiece of our presentation, much of the credit for what we’ve put together at this point belongs to our front office staff. All-Star Game coordinator Emily Erickson and I have held weekly meetings with several other department directors to put together what we’re going to do July 15-16. More than just the events that fans will see on those days, the staff has to make sure all of the logistical details are covered like transportation, housing, special ticket and merchandise ordering, and more.
In that regard, a meeting that Assistant General Manager Matt Hoover and I attended right after the Eastern League gathering was very helpful. All of the hosts for the 2014 Minor League All-Star Games were invited to exchange presentations and ask questions of each other. This idea sharing session allowed us to realize a couple of important things. First, we are off to a very good start in our planning, comparatively. Secondly, there are many things that will pop up that we will need to be ready for internally.
There is plenty that goes into putting together an event of this magnitude. While it’s daunting, we enjoy such challenges because our staff has a passion for it. We can’t wait to see it all come to life and we hope you will join us. Tickets are on sale now! Sorry, couldn’t resist.
WE PICKED THE RIGHT WEEK
The last time the Winter Meetings were held in Orlando, the temperature didn’t get out of the 40s for much of the week. While I know that sounds good in Central Pennsylvania right about now, it wasn’t what was anticipated in Florida. This go around, the mercury has been in the 80s all week. I say this not to gloat because I’ll be returning the deep freeze later today.
CONGRATS AND HELLO, OLD FRIENDS
Well, not that they are old…just long-time friends. This week, three people that I had the work with in the past were recognized for accomplishments. Charleston RiverDogs’ VP/GM Dave Echols won the South Atlantic League Executive of Year Award. Dave and I worked together in 1998 and, other than his allegiance to The Ohio State University, I have a lot of respect for him. Former Curve General Manager Todd “Parney” Parnell was named Executive of the Year in the Eastern League for the second time in his career. He last won it in 2008 while guiding the Altoona franchise. Speaking of Curve alums making it happen. My former broadcast partner, Jason Dambach, who is now the SVP/GM of the State College Spikes saw his club honored as the Bob Freitas Award winner for franchise excellence at the Class Short-Season A level. Congratulations to all. Well done, boys.
That’s it for the Winter Meetings column for this year. Hope you enjoyed. Look forward to seeing you soon in Curve, PA!