Scout (sport)

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In professional sports, scouts are experienced talent evaluators who travel extensively for the purposes of watching athletes play their chosen sports and determining whether their set of skills and talents represent what is needed by the scout's organization. Some scouts are interested primarily in the selection of prospects, younger players who may require further development by the acquiring team but who are judged to be worthy of that effort and expense for the potential future payoff that it could bring, while others concentrate on players who are already polished professionals whose rights may be available soon, either through free agency or trading, and who are seen as filling a team's specific need at a certain position. Advance scouts watch the teams that their teams are going to play in order to help determine strategy.

Professional sports, as opposed to amateur sports, are sports in which athletes receive payment for their performance or not. Professional athleticism has come to the fore through a combination of developments. Mass media and increased leisure have brought larger audiences, so that sports organizations or teams can command large incomes. As a result, more sportspeople can afford to make athleticism their primary career, devoting the training time necessary to increase skills, physical condition, and experience to modern levels of achievement. This proficiency has also helped boost the popularity of sports.

In professional sports, a free agent is a player who is eligible to freely sign with any club or franchise; i.e., not under contract to any specific team. The term is also used in reference to a player who is under contract at present but who is allowed to solicit offers from other teams. In some circumstances, the free agent's options are limited by league rules.

Strategy is a high level plan to achieve one or more goals under conditions of uncertainty. In the sense of the "art of the general", which included several subsets of skills including "tactics", siegecraft, logistics etc., the term came into use in the 6th century C.E. in East Roman terminology, and was translated into Western vernacular languages only in the 18th century. From then until the 20th century, the word "strategy" came to denote "a comprehensive way to try to pursue political ends, including the threat or actual use of force, in a dialectic of wills" in a military conflict, in which both adversaries interact.

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Many scouts are former coaches or retired players, while others have made a career just of being scouts. Skilled scouts who help to determine which players will fit in well with an organization can be the major difference between success and failure for the team with regard to wins and losses, which often relates directly to the organization's financial success or lack thereof as well.

Coach (sport) person involved in directing, instructing and training sportspeople

In sports, a coach is a person involved in the direction, instruction and training of the operations of a sports team or of individual sportspeople. A coach may also be a teacher.

Kinds of scouts

Scouts tend to have to perform one of two tasks, either scouting opposition teams to research the opposition's players and tactics, or scouting individual players to identify their level of skill and to keep track of potential new signings. [1]

Contemporary Major League Baseball teams usually classify scouts and their differing responsibilities as follows:

Major League Baseball Professional baseball league

Major League Baseball (MLB) is a professional baseball organization, the oldest of the four major professional sports leagues in the United States and Canada. A total of 30 teams play in the National League (NL) and American League (AL), with 15 teams in each league. The NL and AL were formed as separate legal entities in 1876 and 1901 respectively. After cooperating but remaining legally separate entities beginning in 1903, the leagues merged into a single organization led by the Commissioner of Baseball in 2000. The organization also oversees Minor League Baseball, which comprises 256 teams affiliated with the Major League clubs. With the World Baseball Softball Confederation, MLB manages the international World Baseball Classic tournament.

In Major League Baseball, the general manager (GM) of a team typically controls player transactions and bears the primary responsibility on behalf of the ballclub during contract discussions with players.

College baseball is baseball that is played on the intercollegiate level at institutions of higher education. In comparison to football and basketball, college competition in the United States plays a smaller role in developing professional players, as baseball's professional minor leagues are more extensive, with a greater history of supplying players to the top professional league. Moving directly from high school to the professional level is more common in baseball than in football or basketball. However, if players do opt to enroll at a four-year college to play baseball, they must complete three years to regain professional eligibility, unless they reach age 21 before starting their third year of college. Players who enroll at junior colleges regain eligibility after one year at that level. In the most recently completed 2017 season, there were 298 NCAA Division I teams in the United States.

United States federal republic in North America

The United States of America (USA), commonly known as the United States or America, is a country composed of 50 states, a federal district, five major self-governing territories, and various possessions. At 3.8 million square miles, the United States is the world's third or fourth largest country by total area and is slightly smaller than the entire continent of Europe's 3.9 million square miles. With a population of over 327 million people, the U.S. is the third most populous country. The capital is Washington, D.C., and the largest city by population is New York City. Forty-eight states and the capital's federal district are contiguous in North America between Canada and Mexico. The State of Alaska is in the northwest corner of North America, bordered by Canada to the east and across the Bering Strait from Russia to the west. The State of Hawaii is an archipelago in the mid-Pacific Ocean. The U.S. territories are scattered about the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, stretching across nine official time zones. The extremely diverse geography, climate, and wildlife of the United States make it one of the world's 17 megadiverse countries.

According to Tony Lucadello, considered by some to be the greatest scout ever, [2] [3] [4] [5] the four kinds of scouts start with the letter 'P':

Anthony Lucadello was a professional baseball scout for the Chicago Cubs (1943–1957) and Philadelphia Phillies (1957–1989). During his career, he signed a total of 52 players who made it to the Major Leagues, most notably Hall of Famers Ferguson Jenkins and Mike Schmidt. His total number of Major League signings is considered to be unsurpassed, and some have called him perhaps the greatest scout ever.

Lucadello estimated that five percent of scouts were poor, five percent pickers, 85 percent performance scouts and five percent projectors. [6]

Computer-aided scouting

Modern day scouts are becoming more and more reliant on computer programs to aid and assist in the evaluation of talent being scouted.[ citation needed ] Many professional sport clubs now use computers to organize their collected information and data.[ citation needed ] Most sports still depend on human management to decide which players their organization will draft or sign.[ citation needed ]

Notable scouts

Baseball

Baseball scouts at a game at Turner Field in 2008. Scouts.jpg
Baseball scouts at a game at Turner Field in 2008.

American football

Basketball

Association football (soccer)

Ice hockey

Notes

  1. Owen, Gareth (17 December 2011). "Scouting missions broaden horizons during injury absence". The Sentinel . Archived from the original on 5 May 2013. Retrieved 17 December 2011.
  2. Robbins, Mike (2004). Ninety Feet from Fame: Close Calls With Baseball Immortality. Pp. 99–100.
  3. Jordan, David M. (2004). Occasional Glory: The History of the Philadelphia Phillies. Pp. 163–164.
  4. Spivak, Jeffrey (2005). Crowning the Kansas City Royals: Remembering the 1985 World Series Champs. P. 36.
  5. Joyce, Gare. Wall of Dreams.
  6. Winegardner, Mark (1990). Prophet of the Sandlots: Journeys with a Major League Scout. P. 97.
  7. Bruce, Aubrey (February 11, 2010). "Incomplete journey". New Pittsburgh Courier . Retrieved 12 March 2010.

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