Sunday, December 16, 2012

Lies and more lies

In attempting to answer my question about Kyle Stark and Larry Broadway's lack of qualifications and experience, Neal Huntington said that Mitch Lukevics, Tampa Bay's director of player development, had little or no prior experience before taking that job.

Here's the account of it on the Pirates' official site:

For instance, one gentleman cited the apparent contradiction of stressing player-development yet having it run by two men -- assistant GM Kyle Stark and Larry Broadway, director of Minor League operations -- "with no experience in player development."
After defending the qualifications of Stark and Broadway, Huntington asked the fan for his choice of MLB's best player-development program. When he quickly picked Tampa Bay, Huntington said, without skipping a beat, "Mitch Lukevics, who runs their system, had no prior experience with that. Some people have training in their background, others get very good at it on the job."
Here's a quick look at Mitch Lukevics's professional history:
Mitch has spent 38 years in professional baseball as a pitcher, coach and Minor League administrator.  He has been Tampa Bay’s Director of Minor League Operations for the past seven seasons, overseeing one of the most productive Minor League systems in baseball. 
Lukevics joined the then expansion Tampa Bay Devil Rays in November 1995.  During his 17 years with the club, he has also been a pitching coach (1996) and the Assistant to Player Development and Scouting (1997-2005).
Mitch was a second round draft pick of the Chicago White Sox in 1975 and pitched six seasons in their Minor League system.  He was released as a player and hired as a coach by the White Sox on the same day in Spring Training 1981.  Lukevics spent the next four seasons as a pitching coach in their system. Following the 1985 season, Mitch moved into Chicago’s front office as the Minor League Administrator. 
After 14 years with the White Sox, Lukevics then worked from 1989 through 1995 as the Director of Minor League Operations for the New York Yankees. 
So, yeah. He had basically no experience when he joined the Rays in 1997, except for his first 22 years -- six as a player, four as a coach, and then another 12 years in various front offices.  No real experience.

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