Thursday, March 20, 2014

John Mabry or Fredi Gonzalez: Johngy's Choice

Choices.  Life is full of choices.  Interviewing sports people on the field forces you to make choices.  Tough choices.  Maybe not too tough, because any way you will end up with a good subject.
Other than the manager's pre-game press meeting, these on-field interviews are rarely set up in advance.  As an interviewer, one must keep scanning the entire field for available players ro coaches.  There is a delicate balance of getting them at just the right time, so as not to interfere with their pre-game activities, but to get them before they head back into the clubhouse.
Of course when a certain individual is the goal, camping out near him and just waiting for him usually works, but it might cost several other interviews during the wait.  It just depends on how much you want one specific player.
Sometimes, it involves watching several individuals at the same time and waiting for the first available.  Other times, a few are available at the same time.  At this point, the choice must be made.  Who and how do you pick?
There is no system for making that decision.  Maybe you just like one player more.  Maybe one player is considerably better than the other.  Maybe one is more interesting.  Maybe you have already interviewed one on a previous day.
The bottom line is it really doesn't matter much when you are on a pro field interviewing pro athletes.  You really can't go wrong.
Last year in St. Louis, I was waiting for Cardinals coach John Mabry (one of my favorites) when Atlanta Braves manager became available.  Just then Mabry became available, too.
With no disrespect to Gonzalez, I could not pass up my longtime mancrush (and former Cub) Mabry.  We got Mabry and it was a fun interview.
Much to my pleasure (and luck), Gonzalez reappeared right in front of us after the conclusion of the Mabry interview. I jumped at the chance to get Gonzalez at that point and it was another fun interview!  That interview can be found at On the Beat with Fredi Gonzalez of the Atlanta Braves.
Getting old favorites is always great, but getting a pro manager is quite cool, too.  Getting both and not chosing is just awesome (and lucky).
Fredi Gonzalez and me in St. Louis, MO-August 2013.

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