I'm not real good with prose, so I'll just scattershoot the parts of the session that I remember...
JD started by remarking that the Q&A event w/ the Newberg crowd is one of his favorite days of the year. Nice touch and good way to warm the crowd.
My favorite anecdote was when JD answered my question about the reaction in the draft room when Houston made their draft pick, which sealed the fact that Smoak was going to fall to the Rangers. He remarked that within the industry it is generally pretty well known what each team is going to do going into the draft, so once the first few picks played out, it started to become obvious to them that they would be able to land Smoak. Then he told a story about how the 2006 draft unfolded in the Rangers draft HQ. He said that going into that draft, the one team that was unclear on their intentions was SF. The Rangers had eyes for Tiny Tim Lincecum, and if he had made it past SF, then the braintrust was confident that he would be a Ranger. JD said that Lincecum's five digit draft number was something like 00605, and when the Giants announced their pick, they started by saying "six" and JD admitted that he was feeling elated, not realizing that the first two zeros are commonly ommitted.
He said that the evaluation of Galaragga was flawed, but he does not think that the Rangers evaluation process is flawed. I understood his answer to mean that he believes the team had a poor evaluation of an individual pitcher, but that it was an isolated incident. This was also my question.
Hambone extension talks have been tabled for the time being.
When Grant Schiller asked what he would guess the rotation would be in 2010, using only current members of the system. JD asked him what he thought and he said Feliz, Hurley, Hunter, Harrison, and Kiker. JD responded that those sounded good to him then remarked that some young pitchers currently in the bigs could also hold their roto spots.
Remarked that he is hopeful CJ grows into the closer role, and he said he knows that fans have been getting uneasy when the Ceej enters a game and remarked, "if you are getting uneasy when he is coming into the game, just try and imagine how I am feeling". Got a roomfull of laughs there.
When asked what advice he would give to others that could be used in coaching, leadership, business, or life in general he said, "Be brutally honest".
Said that Jon Hart is around a few times a year and admitted that he solicits opinions from him at certain times. Remarked that even though Hart had a rough go in Texas with media, fans, and on-field results, but he still has a wealth of knowledge that JD like to tap into at times.
From Will Carroll...
Said that JD is one of the GMs that he most respects in the game, but said that he has "grave concern" about the hiring of Colburn as bullpen coach. Carroll has a very low opinion of that guy.
Regarding Brandon McCarthy (my question), Carroll said that he doesn't expect him to recover. Said something about a chain of injuries from fingertips to forearm to elbow to shoulder that is rarely ever recovered from. Said some guys just aren't cut out for the act of pitching in the bigs and every time one part of the body is strengthened, another weak link in the chain brakes. He sounded very discouraging about any expectations of McCarthy lasting any length of time in a major league rotation.
He also mentioned that he has serious concerns about Clayton Kershaw's mechanics. (Gasp...the cornerstone of my keeper team!)
He has known Tommy Hunter since he was 15 years old and has always been high on him. Says he thought Hunter would end up a closer, but now thinks he may have been selling him short. He says CJ is no closer, he's a LOOGY.
Believes that if Teagarden stays healthy and hits .260 that he will be the most valuable of that group of four.
Joe Sheehan said...
When asked what pitcher would be the best FA target for the Rangers in the next few years - he said King Felix.
He also said that he thinks the talent on hand could easily lead to a run of 3 divisional titles in a 5 year time frame, beginning in 2010 with Feliz heading the rotation. Also cautioned against expecting Feliz to pitch in the big leagues before then. I guess he is saying that Feliz could top a rotation from the moment he gets called up.
Anyway, the event was great - big props to Newberg for another quality program.