Under the Bus
Never once, however, did Goldie mention to me that he was going to throw me under the bus with McGarrity. What really ticks me off was that we both agreed on which prospects to invite to the private workout. But when McGarrity arrived, he was like, "Why's that guy here? Let's get one thing straight, it wasn't my idea to invite him."
I can honestly tell you, Goldie can be a cold as they come. But on the other hand, he insisted that we invite Shaun Bankman and his father so the cross-checker could see Shaun pitch one last time. Never in a million years would I have thought that Goldie would ever want to be in the same county as the Bankman's considering what happened at their house.
Anyhow, back to McGarrity. At first, we had him pitch all of his stuff without a batter and then we stacked him up against some talent. Fastball was in the high 80's, but he could purposely change speeds starting at the upper 70's. Same look, release point, and delivery whether it was thrown at 87 mph or 77 mph. Very deceptive if done correctly. He also mixed in a splitter to really get batters chasing. Again, same look, release point, and delivery as the fastball. And if that weren't enough, he had excellent command over his curveball. Not very fast. But very loopy and perfectly located.
I was really excited for McGarrity until Goldie called for a break in the action. The nerve. Trying to distract McGarrity and throw him off his rhythm. Goldie motioned for the catcher to come over. In front of the cross-checker and Toby Bradford, Goldie says he thinks he sees something. He tells the catcher that he wants to call the pitches for several batters. He gives him the signals (which I couldn't believe - almost like he had called signals before) and tells him to get back to the plate. For the next couple batters, Goldie has McGarrity jump back and forth between his fastball, splitter, and curve. Then Goldie calls the next batter over to him before the guy walks out to the batter's box.
He proceeds to tell the batter to watch the location of McGarrity's left elbow as he grabs the ball inside his glove after receiving the signal from the catcher. If his elbow is slightly higher than his glove, it'll be a splitter. If it's even with the glove, it's a curve. Below the glove, it's a fastball. It was all very subtle but as Goldie called the pitches, it became obvious that McGarrity was tipping from the stretch. Unintentional, of course, but from that point forward, McGarrity was toast. He was rocked from one side of the field to the other.
Three veteran scouts, all with MLB playing experience. None of us picked up the subtle movements. That's our freaking job. But then it dawned on me. Goldie set me up. McGarrity had only thrown a dozen pitches before Goldie called for a break. That really wasn't enough pitches for us to catch on (although it probably should have been). Goldie must have seen these movements when we scouted McGarrity in February. How nice of him to keep it all to himself (Of course, I really missed the boat). And he just tucked them away and waited for the opportunity to screw me over.
And man, did he ever. Both the cross-checker and Toby were totally impressed with Goldie's find. To make matters worse, the cross-checker leaned over to me and asked, "Didn't you see this crap when you scouted him?" Of course, Goldie had a free pass because he wasn't supposed to be the one finding this stuff. Goldie's the stat boy. I'm the tools and technique guy. I suddenly felt like I was on some Twilight Zone episode.
Then he asked Goldie, "So how did you pick'em up?"
Goldie looked at him and smiled. "Ever play Texas hold'em?"
Of course, that sound you hear is the bus running me over.