Contact - Use Them!

Have you ever heard of the express, “it’s who you know, not what you know.”

It’s (the phrase) a well know remark that’s either for you, or against you, anyway you look at it. Especially when it’s said with a specific intent. Again, plus or minus.

Well, let’s look at that phase in a way that you might think of, or assume beneficial to you because your not all that familiar with a man or woman that would fit that bill. In other words, an inside person with clout, influence, money, you get the idea.

But hold on there, let’s not be so narrow minded about who it is that we may want to contact. For example, consider the following people:

  • All of your teachers
  • Your baseball coaches
  • Your clergy - Pastor, Rabi, Priest, etc.
  • Your mom or dad’s boss,… heck, you mom and/or dad, grandparents, uncles, aunts, etc.
  • Your family lawyer, doctor, tax accountant.
  • Your city councillors, ward alderman, state representative.

What do all these people have in common? Most, if not all, have been to college. And by reason of that, they are alumni of institutions. So, if your looking for advice, an interest in what’s what, why not set aside some time to talk to these people about there college or university. What it was like, what good times they had, who were the coaches at the time when they were there.

Now here comes the good part. Tell any and all of those that you talked with that your going to write the baseball office and that institution’s skipper and express an interest in more information about the college and university - especially their baseball program. And express a tremendous
appreciation for the information provided by those you talked to - and mentioned him/her by name and the class they graduated in. I’m sure everyone will say with enthusiasm…” go ahead and good luck!” Just get the person’s approval before hand.

Now this really isn’t a reference, nor is it an open door for a campus visit. IT IS however, a real handy way of making an introduction to the college with an alumni’s name in a very positive light. Let things take their course and see what turns up. You’d be amazed at what a simple act of courtesy - of saying positive things about an alumni’s experience, coupled with your interest in that institution’s baseball program can generate. Now I’m not saying you’ll get a post card in the mail, but it’s a start.

Also, this is a very, very small world. Saying something good about someone or someplace can only bring good things in your direction - again, it’s a start.

The foregoing does require a bit of fineness and a clear plan. But look at it this way - as a college baseball pitcher you’ve got to be very pro active on your own behalf, with polish and diplomacy. Why not practice now, with guidance from your parents and maybe some of the people that I mentioned above.

Coach B.

this is such good advice, it is a shame that it is wasted on teenagers though haha. When I was a teenager I would have never done anything of this sort becuase of A) laziness, and B) Pride and probably mostly C) Being to cynical and assuming that i knew everything and that this would never work.

Now that I am trying to get a job as a Phys Ed teacher in the city, I am reaching out to every connection I have. If prospective student athletes used this advice, it would be up there with the best decisions they ever made.

Yep QC it’s "youth is wasted on the young :wink: "
This is how I have made my living and met some unreal individuals…Oh man is it hard to get a teen to understand this concept.


I sincerely wish you the very best in your career search.

I’m retired now and in the slow lane of life, but I do stay in touch to what’s happening around me. I know exactly what you’re gong through - I’ve been there many, many times. And if wasn’t for the family of baseball and all the wonderful people that I’ve had the Privilege to meet, my family and I would have been in some tight straights.
I never really made it to any real name clubs or leagues, but the people that allowed me to share in there experience have been premium people beyond belief.

Recently over the last three years I’ve been swamped by former coaches, players, even a silent partner in a partnership venture to a club that I was with once — all requesting my name as a reference for a job or other applicaiton. I’ve never seen things like this before - never.

The bottom line here, always be reasonable, loyal to the spirit of what drives your heart, and know your vocation cold. Never stop learning, be flexible, and know your environment. Never have to look back over your shoulder for things that might come back to bite you.

Be willing to give a good reference when it’s deserved, and expect the same if you deserve it yourself.

Coach B.