Eddie Bane (Director of Scouting)
Interview conducted by Chuck Richter
In this month's edition of the Bane Connection we asked Eddie some questions that have nothing to do with the Angels future stars, but rather switched gears this month and had him tell us a little bit about Eddie the person, ex-ball player and scout.
Eddie has been kind enough to share not only his insight & insider info on all of the Angels future stars throughout the season and in this edition, about himself. With this being the last edition in 2007, until late Feb of 2008 when pitchers and catchers report, let's all give Eddie a round of applause for his efforts and contributions for not only the Angelswin.com community, but for all of the fans & readers of this monthly segment on the net.
With no further ado, let's proceed with the interview entitled......
The Lighter side of Eddie Bane
Q: (Angelswin) - How did you get into baseball?
A: (Eddie Bane) - Hi folks, guys and girls. Welcome to another Bane Connection and let's get going. First of all I hope you guys are getting to watch my ASU Sun Devils in football. That is one of my diversions off the field and we have to keep that quiet around Mr Moreno and Dennis Kuhl and John Carpino as they are huge University of Arizona fans.
I started in baseball like every other kid by playing in Little League and having great parents who helped me along the way. Went to High School in Westminster and then on to ASU and was drafted by the Twins after 3 years as a SunDevil and then was fortunate enough to go directly to the major leagues and play for the Twins. Got the chance to play baseball with Rod Carew, Harmon Killebrew, Tony Oliva, Larry Hisle, Lymon Bostock, Bert Blyleven (who should be in the Hall of Fame) Danny Thompson, Roy Smalley and many other great players. Jim Kaat though was the one that took me under his wing and guided me through all tough times. And, had the chance to learn from Gene Mauch, who I consider the smartest baseball person I was ever around.. After playing professionally I started at the bottom rung of scouting and was lucky enough to move up to my current position of Director of Scouting.
Q: (Angelswin) - Most memorable game from a personal performance standpoint?
A: (Eddie Bane) - My most memorable pro game would probably be either my first win against the WC Oakland A's or the first game of my career when I pitched in front of the biggest crowd in the history of the Old Met in Minneapolis when the people showed up to see the college hot-shot pitch against the KC Royals. I pitched 7 innings with 3 hits and left the game leading 2-1. We blew the lead, but those things happen.
Q: (Angelswin) - Most memorable game you witnessed from a fans' standpoint?
A: (Eddie Bane) - I was working for the Dodgers when Kirk Gibson hit the homerun to beat Oakland. Knowing some of the background only people with the club would know and having my dad and kids at the game made it really special.
Q: (Angelswin) - What was your worst scouting trip you ever had?
A: (Eddie Bane) - It is almost impossible to have a bad day scouting. I do remember coming back from a game in Mexicali where they had no cabs, in a rough area and I rode in the back of a pig farmers truck to the border...... with me and the pigs in the back. I was happy to get the ride. You also see some unique things when scouting in the south that you just don't see anywhere else. Fighting parents etc. always add to the spectacle. But, by and large it is scouting and that is a ton of fun.
Q: (Angelswin) - What do you like best about your job?
A: (Eddie Bane) - In the end the job is all encompassing. The thought that everyday you still believe you are going to find that one Roy Hobbs hid out somewhere that nobody else knows about. I still love the travel, hotels, food, rent-a-cars and the entire thing.
Q: (Angelswin) - Best Major Leaguer you've signed to date?
A: (Eddie Bane) - I have been fortunate enough to be around and help sign (you always help sign as it is never a one man operation) all-stars and Cy Young award winners. I helped sign Albert Belle, Cory Snyder, Eric Gagne, Paul LoDuca, Carl Crawford and many others with the other clubs, but the best player I have ever signed in my mind is Paul Konerko. Paul is also at the top of the list as far as good people I have signed also. I really care about Konerko and he feels the same way about me. I have known Paul since he was 13 years old as he was a childhood friend of my son, Jaymie.
Q: (Angelswin) - What's a week in the life of a scout like?
A: (Eddie Bane) - Different months of the year are completely different, but if you take the month of April or May every day of the month for say my national crosscheckers, Jeff Malinoff and Ric Wilson is constant travel. Up in the morning (early 6am) fly for a couple of hours, get a rent-a-car, use the GPS, find the ballpark, find a hotel, get room service, shower, get on the computer, watch tv for an hour, try and get some sleep and then get up and do the same thing again everyday for about 20-30 days in a row. All sandwiched around keeping up with the voice mail and trying to see how your kid did in his math test or soccer game.
But, I would not change it for anything.
Q: (Angelswin) - What is the best prank you have seen in the clubhouse or dugout?
A: (Eddie Bane) - Oh, they are all over the place. Best one I ever did was convincing the front desk that they needed to call our Latino pitcher, Juan Vientedos, every hour all night to remind him to take his medicine for his bad arm. I told them that no matter how much he yelled at them that they needed to call him every hour on the hour. He would complain to them in Spanish, but they reliably called him back on the dot every hour. He was down at the front desk about ready to trade blows at 5 in the morning, but it was pretty funny.
Q: (Angelswin) - Favorite city to travel to when scouting?
A: (Eddie Bane) - 2 places very diverse. New York City is the most fun place in the world with the plays, etc. And, you cannot beat the state of Mississippi or Alabama for the hospitality and the beauty of the people.
Q: (Angelswin) - Ever second guess yourself for a scouting decision on a kid and have it come back to haunt you?
A: (Eddie Bane) - Sure, all the time. Most notable was Bill Bene my first year with the Dodgers. I was headstrong in love with a pitcher named Bill Bene with a great, 100 mph arm. I went right by and did not want to hear about a 3rd baseman at Oklahoma St. named Robin Ventura. Oops.
Q: (Angelswin) - How do you think Tony Reagins will do as a Major League General Manager?
A: (Eddie Bane) - Tony will do an excellent job as GM of the Angels. We will miss Bill a lot, but I thought it was a great choice to stay in-house and use Tony's attributes as a GM. He has been schooled in being the GM and he will use his people and he has plus baseball skills himself so I look forward to a continuation of the success we have had with the Angels.
It is tough for baseball to lose Terry Ryan, Bill Stoneman and John Schuerholz all in one offseason. All great baseball people, but it is just a reminder that time marches on.
Q: (Angelswin) - Last book you read?
A: (Eddie Bane) - Secret Servant by Daniel Silva. Read that along with the book titled 'Texas' by James Michener at the same time. I am a big reader.
Q: (Angelswin) - Favorite kind of music?
A: (Eddie Bane) - All kinds, but the Beach Boys is what I get freaky over.
Q: (Angelswin) - Favorite vacation spot in the offseason?
A: (Eddie Bane) - Lake Tahoe. It has everything. Outdoors, golf, the serenity of the woods and the indoors of the Nevada type stuff.
Q: (Angelswin) - Favorite food & place to eat?
A: (Eddie Bane) - Garcia's Mexican restaurant.
Q: (Angelswin) - What was your worst job?
A: (Eddie Bane) - I moved bricks, mud and dirt around one day in a moving project. That was when I was positive sports were going to be a better way to go.
Q: (Angelswin) - What is your hobby? (Not Baseball related)?
A: (Eddie Bane) - I am a pretty good golfer(about a 7 handicap), but my favorite thing to do is either read history or go to Broadway shows. If you ever need a review of Les Mis, Jersey Boys or Mamma Mia then I am your guy.
Q: (Angelswin) - Lastly, what is Eddie Bane's biggest accomplishment in life?
A: (Eddie Bane) - My biggest accomplishment by far is that I am the father of Jaymie, Kacey, Corey and Veronica Bane. Also the dad of the greatest dog on the earth, Sven Bane. My scouts can tell you how nutty I am about Sven and all animals really. That is a good enough accomplishment for me anytime.
Once again Chuck, thanks for asking the questions and I hope I did not bore the readers too much with this personal stuff.