Generally, my normal school year doesn't end until late May and then things start up again in late July with junior high softball tryouts. There's typically a six week window during June and July where I'm doing some summer coaching, but not this year. School affiliated summer baseball is dying in central Illinois, but that's a story for another day.
|My view from my work station.|
I had grand ideas of being the official scorer, but my spring and fall coaching duties conflicted with the Chiefs' schedule of games quite a bit and that bubble burst fairly quickly.
I'm a Data Entry guy! I found my niche with the TrackMan system the Chiefs use.
|TrackMan tracks all kinds of numbers and I love it!|
I have a badge!
In general, I'm responsible for numbers 1 through 4, in the picture below, during the game. The main two I spend most of my time are #2 and #3, which includes the umpire's call of each pitch or the outcome of the ball put in play and identifying the pitch type. Pitch types can be tricky!
At the end of the game I upload the data into the system and after it's "cleaned" by the TrackMan staff it is then sent to the Chiefs and Cardinals to digest and dissect. I'm usually clocking out and walking to the parking lot about five minutes after the conclusion of the game.
Here's a picture of my work station.
The two gentlemen in front of me run the live GameCast of the game for internet viewers and Dozer Park's scoreboard. The guy on the left has another career and just does this for fun and extra spending money. The gentleman on the right is working for a living in baseball. He does three innings of radio, is in charge of the post game summary and numerous other jobs. They are both twenty-something guys and love to talk baseball, food and women. For the most part I just play the role of "fly on the wall" but occasionally I'll chime in or I'll be asked to settle a debate. For instance, last Monday they asked me to settle the hot dog condiment debate! LOL
The red pieces of paper on the tabletop are "Chiefs Bucks" that I may use how I see fit. I get $10 each day to spend on concessions. Nice perk!
In summary, I get paid to watch baseball. I also get the behind-the-curtains view of how a minor league baseball staff produces its product on game day. Baseball talk and other musings keep me entertained between innings and I also get some coupons to spend on ballpark food.
I'm really enjoying it and am hopeful that I'll be lucky enough to continue working this position during upcoming seasons. For yours truly, it's like the best summer job ever!