Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Showalter: Give Me a Handful of 'Pile Jumpers' and 'Nuggets', and I'll Bring Baltimore A Title

You just can't take Buck Showalter lightly. He's whipped most every team he's managed into contenders, and even champs, and even eked out a win for the lowly Orioles last night in his Baltimore debut against the Angels.

What does Showalter look for in a team? "Pile jumpers," he told a roomful of reporters earlier this week.

Said Showalter:

"In Texas, we had a lot of commitments to people who probably were not going to be a pile jumper, so to speak, somebody you'll see after Game 7 jumping on the pile on the ground. That's what it boils down to. You're looking for 25 nuggets. You get one, you put it over here, you sift some more, you move a rock here and there, but you've got a nugget over there. When you've got 25 nuggets, you get to play in October. It's as simple as that. It's not nearly as complicated as everybody makes it out to be."
Interesting. The guy wants winners, players who've been there before, even if it hasn't been with the Orioles, who haven't had the opportunity to jump on the pile since before Showalter even made a cameo on Seinfeld as Yankees skipper.

Pile jumpers. Look around your office. Who are the pile jumpers? Who are the nuggets? Who are the guys/girls who will close the deal? Who are the ones who wouldn't know a pile if they stumbled on it? Not many of the latter in the workplace anymore, after the Great Recession and subsequent layoffs.

Look in the mirror, boy-o. Will you be jumping on a pile after your own figurative Game 7?

If so, just be careful when you jump. Showalter can ask his Angels counterpart Mike Scioscia about the perils of pile-jumping; guys get hurt in those scrums.


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