Missed Representation

The first year player draft is quickly approaching. I have already noted my picks participating in various mock drafts that are taking place around the Internet. This is a very important draft for the Arizona Diamondbacks. With the team having seven of the first 64 picks in the draft this is a great opportunity to rebuild the farm system which has become depleted as of late due to the promotion of players and through trades to get much needed pieces at the Major League level. This draft is going to be especially interesting for the Diamondbacks given that they recently completed a major overhaul of the player development staff with AJ Hinch moving from Director of Player Personnel to manager and the subsequent moves of Jack Howell and Mel Stottlemyre Jr. to Hinch’s staff. I’m not sure I can ever remember a time when a Major League franchise made decisions such as these so close to the draft. It will be interesting to see what impact that might have on draft decisions or philosophies.

The draft this year is taking place in Secaucus New Jersey; which just happens to be the home of the MLB Network. I’d like to say that is a coincidence but I think Major League Baseball planned that so that they could showcase their new television network and broadcasting center. The first round of the draft will be held in Studio 42 which was named to pay tribute to Jackie Robinson. All 30 teams will have representatives at the draft. As in years past the club representatives are basically figureheads there to show a presence. The General Manager and front office staff are normally at club headquarters and phone in the pick which is written down and handed to commissioner Bud Selig who will go to the podium and announce the selection. It is a highly ceremonial process done mostly for show.

The clubs typically select their representative as someone who has been associated with the team in some historical perspective or perhaps to honor someone who the club feels has been important to their success. There is usually also a representative from the player development staff I guess to make sure that the selection’s name was written down correctly. How embarrassing would it be if you heard the name wrong on the phone and instead drafted some complete nobody in the first round?

I have been sitting next to my phone almost willing it to ring hoping that when I answered it would be Arizona Diamondbacks President and CEO calling to ask me if I would be willing to act as the Diamondbacks representative at the draft. I mean that seemed like a no-brainer pick. Not that I am historical or important in any way but you have to admit; without the fans teams would never be successful. It would be the perfect message to send to baseball; the Arizona Diamondbacks feel that their fans are important to their success and should be recognized. I think I am quite qualified to take on this responsibility. I have my own pen and in school I always got good grades in penmanship so Mr. Selig wouldn’t have to struggle to read my handwriting. I have my own cell phone so if there is a problem with the phones at the MLB Network building Josh Byrnes could still get a hold of me so that the team does not miss their pick. I have a watch and can tell time using both analog and digital timepieces. I’m good at math so even if they throw a curve and use a 24-hour time format I can still figure it out well within the timeline for selecting a player. I have my own Diamondbacks jersey and hat so there would be no doubt which team I represented. I even have a jersey with my name on the back and the number 9 so they could save by not having to print out a name tag for me or wonder what year it was (they would have to remember what century we are in which could be a problem for the Pittsburgh Pirates).

Alas though the phone didn’t ring and the Diamondbacks decided to go a different direction. Rather than having a diehard fan represent them at the draft they instead will be sending special assistant to the President Roland Hemond. Mr. Hemond is no doubt very qualified although I am not sure what his penmanship is like or if he has his own pen. I guess I will have to be content just watching the draft on television and wonder what it would be like to be there in person representing my team in deciding what the future will hold.

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