Administration and Management Careers in Pro Baseball

By Michael Rosenthal

There are a lot of choices available in this segment from being on the ball field to being employed in a front office position. You must have excellent people skills, possess a bit of psychological sense, and have a talent to manage individuals and gain their respect whether you are praising them or criticizing them. Just knowing a lot about baseball will not necessarily get you a position higher up the ladder than coach or manager of a team. administrative and management careers in pro baseball positions are inclusive of middle and upper management responsibilities.

The highest position (next to owning the team) is that of General Manager and the position requires the ability to not only manage properly, but to endure constant ownership pressures as well as media and fan scrutiny. The hiring and firing of the team manager and coaching staff are the basic responsibilities of the position. Other areas include contract discussions with the individual players concerned as well as the controlling of player transactions. Some teams have assistant GM's as well and are more like students of a future position.

These types of endeavors would also include being a team's manager, most properly referred to as a field manager. Team leadership, strategy, and a thorough knowledge of the rules are the three basic requirements of being a manager. There are usually coaches that provide assistance in the areas of the bases (first and third base coach), batting, pitching, and sometimes there is a bench coach.

I've always felt there was a formula involved with administration and management careers in pro baseball. If I had to come up with an actual recipe for success as a coach or a manager it would probably look like this:

  • one part people skills
  • one part psychological skills
  • one part baby sitting skills
  • one gallon each of courage, guts, and patience

I usually refer to bench coaches as managers in training, although there have been instances in the past where the other coaches have been promoted to field manager. When it comes to being hired into one of the coaching or managing capacities, knowledge of the game's operations and rules come into play. Being successful as a batter or pitcher for either of those coaching endeavors will come in handy more often than not.

Coaching positions are readily available to those that have experience playing the game, but that isn't always the case where being successful is concerned. Most coaches and managers start in the lower levels of baseball, even as far down as high school in some instances. Always remember one thing about coaching and managing a team at any level. The best ballplayers don't always make the best coaches and managers.

Something else you need to be aware of with either area of administration and management careers in pro baseball is that you will never walk right into any of these positions without prior experience. The higher up you go, the more experience is required. Unless a family member owns a team, you?ll never walk in and start at the top, so take a spoon full of 'humble' with your efforts.