Ahead Of The Curve with Jonathan Gelnar

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September 22, 2019  
September 19, 2019  

Mike Glavine- Head Baseball Coach, Northeastern University (MA)

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During this episode of Ahead of the Curve, I interviewed Mike Glavine, Head Baseball Coach at Northeastern University in Boston, Massachusetts. Mike shares advice on how he transitioned into his head coach position at Northeastern University, the power that can be found with indoor practices, typical practice plans, and his players getting to play the Boston Red Sox. 

Episode Highlights: 

  • How did Mike Glavine get involved in baseball?  
  • Does he teach his brother’s change-up? 
  • How does it feel to coach at North Eastern as an alumni?
  • What were some of the first things that Mike did as a coach?
  • What does Mike’s fall training season look like?  
  • What are some things that Coach Glavine does to establish the culture of the team?
  • How does he get to know his players better? 
  • How does he keep competition strong on the team? 
  • In what ways does Mike handle the weather changes?  
  • Are they leveraging technology during indoor practices? 
  • How is he preparing his team to play the Red Sox? 
  • What does a typical practice plan look like? 
  • What do post-season player meetings look like? 
  • What are some different things that Mike Glavine does during interviews of potential hires?  
  • What would Mike do differently as a head coach? 
  • What is the latest thing that Mike Glavine has learned that he is excited about?  
  • What is something that Mike does in practice that his players love? 
  • How does he develop his assistant coaches? 
  • What is something that Mike believes that other coaches may disagree with?
  • What are some of Mike’s favorite books and resources that he has learned the most from? 
  • What are three things that would stand out during Mike Glavine’s baseball practices?  

3 Key Points:

  1. Mike Glavine’s two key components for coaching are preparing the team and developing the team. 
  2. Mike’s typical practices run around 2 and a half hours and finish with a competition where something is at stake for the losing side. 
  3. Give your players goals and honest feedback on what they can work on. 

Tweetable Quotes:

  • “I think really what I want to do is build on what Coach McPhee has established during his 29-year career here at Northeastern. But then give it a fresh look, a reboot, a restart, reengage with everybody.” – Mike Glavine (09:38)
  • “We’ll start fall baseball, and with that, it’s aggressive like most programs. We’ll go six days a week. We’ll have our day off. We’ll hit the 20 hours during the week. We’ll spend time in the weight room.” – Mike Glavine (13:49)
  • “Competition right? It's such a key word, and a great word in sports. It’s something that we focus on all the time.” – Mike Glavine (28:21)
  • “I have learned to love the indoor practices. Because it forces you as coaching staff to get more creative and maybe work on things more on the inside part of your season that you would never work on as much.” – Mike Glavine (33:16)
  • “To me, this game, so much of it is about feel and instincts and what might feel right to Player X might not feel right to Player Y.” – Mike Glavine (39:59)
  • “The guys really appreciate honesty. They want to know where they stand.” – Mike Glavine (52:40)
  • “The summer allows them (players) a fresh start, a re-group. So that when they come into the fall, you know, they are ready to go.” – Mike Glavine (52:51)
  • “How is this coach going to be with me as the head coach? Is he going to be able to handle me? Is he someone that will talk baseball with me all the time? I love to talk baseball?” – Mike Glavine (59:59)

Resources Mentioned: 

Mike Glavine’s Email: @m.glavine@northeastern.edu

September 15, 2019  
September 13, 2019  
September 12, 2019  

David Webb- Head Baseball Coach, Corona del Sol HS (AZ)

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During this episode of Ahead of the Curve, I interviewed David Webb, Head Baseball Coach at Corona del Sol High School in Tempe, Arizona. David shares his vast knowledge of focusing on the mental game of baseball, building up players to get in touch with who they are, building a team culture of having a strong character, and why he doesn’t talk to parents about playing time. 

 

Episode Highlights: 

  • How did David Webb get involved in baseball coaching?  
  • What are David’s time restrictions and how does he work within them in fall training?  
  • What are some different things that his team does for culture building?  
  • What does David Webb talk to the parents of his players about? 
  • How does he personally get to know his players?  
  • How does he prepare assistant coaches to develop their skill-sets further to be head coaches one day? 
  • What are some interview questions he asks during his hiring process? 
  • What things are expected of players? 
  • How does spring training typically unfold for Coach Webb? 
  • When does David Webb get his bullpens in? 
  • How does he handle a parent’s complaint about their kid’s lack of playing time? 
  • Is there something that David Webb has learned lately that has him really excited? 
  • What is something that David’s players do in training that they love? 
  • What is something that David Webb believes that other coaches may disagree with? 
  • What are things done during David’s training that would stand out to people?  
  • What are some of David Webb’s favorite books and resources that have benefited his coaching? 

 

3 Key Points:

  1. In late summer and early fall, David focuses on getting his players strong.  
  2. The “rebel” these days is the one choosing not to lower their standards and aims to have a true character by action, not just by their words. 
  3. Show assistant coaches that you value their time, and give them room to invest their time by letting them do their job. 

Tweetable Quotes:

  • “More is not necessarily better, especially when it comes to the mental side of things.” – David Webb (08:48)
  • “I am all about building character and having a standards-driven program and building young men. The wins will come.” – David Webb (09:43)
  • “One of the greatest things you can do for them (players) that gets them to realize there is some investment is, you get them to know who they really are.” – David Webb (19:35)
  • “I am a huge watcher of players and mannerisms. Have they changed their mentality from day-to-day? And if I see anything, I will pull them aside and I will have conversations.” – David Webb (22:11)
  • (On coaches) “Whether they are young or they are coming in and they are saying, ‘I’ve been a head coach and I just want to be an assistant now, I’m tired of the parent dynamic,’ or whatever, you got to let them coach..” – David Webb (28:36)
  • “The beginning of the year, the practice looks like a lot of situation play, a lot of fundamental individual work.” – David Webb (46:32)
  • “My policy is, which is stated to parents in our Aztec Baseball 101 meeting, I don’t talk playing time with parents.” – David Webb (55:16)
  • “Using Twitter a lot and kind of getting on the same page with other coaches and see what they are doing on the mental side of the game. I’m really focused about that. So, anything mental is really very important to me.” – David Webb (59:33)

Resources Mentioned: 

September 8, 2019  
September 6, 2019  
September 5, 2019  

Peter Fatse- MiLB Hitting Coordinator, Minnesota Twins

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During this episode of Ahead of the Curve, I interviewed Peter Fatse, MiLB Hitting Coordinator for the Minnesota Twins. Peter shares a wealth of information about how to execute decision training, ways to remain competitive during training, the importance of building an adjustable swing, and techniques to implement individualized training for players. 

 

Episode Highlights: 

  • How did Peter Fatse get involved in baseball coaching?  
  • What should we focus on in the off-season? 
  • What questions does he ask players to address deeper learning? 
  • What does an average week of training look like? 
  • How do we train an adjustable swing? 
  • What are some ways that he trains for decision training? 
  • How do they like to compete during training? 
  • What are the things that Peter looks for that he thinks that really good players do?
  • How does Peter issue a plan that maximizes individual development in a team environment? 
  • Is there something that Peter Fatse has learned lately that has him really excited? 
  • What is something that his players do in training that they love? 
  • What is something that Peter believes that other coaches may disagree with? 
  • What are things done during Peter’s training that would stand out to people?  
  • What are some of Peter Fatse’s favorite books and resources that have benefited his coaching? 

3 Key Points:

  1. Be honest about your weaknesses, strengths, and areas of development. 
  2. Adjustability swings are a trait of elite hitters. 
  3. Stay open-minded to learn from various other people. 

Tweetable Quotes:

  • “We have a lot of information. But you have to be hungry to apply it and you have to be hungry to learn and dig in for yourself, because, ultimately, it is your career.” – Peter Fatse (02:49)
  • “Make a realistic evaluation of your previous year and really take the time to look and say, ‘what are the attributes that I possess that right now are strengths for me?’” – Peter Fatse (04:06)
  • “When I think about competitive design, there are two ways that we as hitters compete, the internal and the external.” – Peter Fatse (21:48)
  • “When I have guys in the training center, one of the first questions I will ask is, ‘are you right-handed or left-handed?’” – Peter Fatse (30:05)
  • “A lot of the times, the drill passages, from a bat path perspective would change depending upon their dominant hand and then ultimately, how the barrel created early excerration.” – Peter Fatse (30:10)
  • “Be able to utilize bat and ball information to create a plan, because the ball, ultimately, is going to give us the best depiction of what is happening.” – Peter Fatse (32:57)
  • “Every player’s career is extremely important, especially to myself and the rest of the staff.” – Peter Fatse (34:26)
  • “I think you want to kind of look to layer on stress so that when a guy gets to the game, the idea is more about execution and they are not worried about being prepared anymore.” – Peter Fatse (40:45)

Resources Mentioned: 

September 1, 2019  
August 29, 2019  

Ryan Phillips- Head Baseball Coach, Edmond Sante Fe HS (OK)

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Suggested Title: Developing Players and Coaches with Ryan Phillips 

During this episode of Ahead of the Curve, I interviewed Ryan Phillips, Head Coach for baseball at Sante Fe High School in Edmond, Oklahoma, who became the 2019 Oklahoma State Champs. Ryan shares how he helps develop team culture, improve the confidence of players, his passion for developing coaches, and how he adapts and makes the most of the one-hour practice limitations. 

Episode Highlights: 

  • How did Ryan Phillips get involved in baseball coaching?   
  • What does an average week of training look like? 
  • What are some of their training methods and drills for stealing bases?  
  • Which types of fundamental training do they offer for all of their players? 
  • How does Ryan handle developing their team culture? 
  • Ryan Phillips takes us through his process of coaching coaches. 
  • What are some different things they do to train for a competitive game situation?
  • How does Ryan adapt to one-hour practice training restrictions? 
  • Are there any questions while interviewing staff that he asks to figure out who the person is?  
  • What are the rules and standards that they have for their program? 
  • What does training look like in the spring?  
  • How do they go about handling their bullpens? 
  • Ryan Phillips talks about batting practice and lifting. 
  • What do post-season meetings look like? 
  • What advice does he have for first-year head coaches or assistant coaches that want to be head coaches? 
  • How does Ryan Phillips respond to parents asking questions about their kid? 
  • What is something that his players do in training that they love? 
  • Is there anything about Ryan’s training that would stand out to people?  
  • Is there something that Ryan Phillips has learned lately that has him really excited?  
  • What is something that Ryan Phillips believes that other coaches may disagree with?
  • What are some of Ryan Phillips’s favorite books and resources that have benefited his coaching? 

 

3 Key Points:

  1. Learn how to adjust as the season progresses. 
  2. Mental stability, mental toughness, and not pressuring kids about their mistakes is important to build confidence. 
  3. Communication is key between coaches and players. 

 

Tweetable Quotes:

  • “As a high school coach, once your season is over, seniors are gone, and then you start evaluating your next year’s class or next year’s team.” – Ryan Phillips (04:08)
  • “We base our fall off of our next year’s team. It’s not the same every year.” – Ryan Phillips (04:27)
  • “When the players see that we love each other and that even though sometimes we disagree we can get on the same page, I think that is the backbone of the culture.” – Ryan Phillips (14:26)
  • “When I’m trying to help a coach, I try to give him more responsibility. When it comes to responsibility, a lot of the times they surprise me and they do a really good job.” – Ryan Phillips (18:30)
  • “Everything we do you have a winner and a loser. So, it starts with the catch.” – Ryan Phillips (20:24)
  • “The hour-long practice, a lot of people don’t like it, and of course you would like to have a little bit longer. But, it’s made us more creative and more efficient.” – Ryan Phillips (24:22)
  • “Our first standard is you’ve got to do what’s right. That’s for your family, at school, that’s in baseball.” – Ryan Phillips (28:51)
  • “We learn from failure.” – Ryan Phillips (29:13)

 

Resources Mentioned: