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Dan shares his recollections of a memorable conversation with the late Hall of Fame manager early in his own career.

Earl Weaver was a winner. His .583 career winning percentage as a manager is the ninth-best all-time, and only Al Lopez has posted a better winning percentage since World War II. Weaver's first three full-season Oriole clubs all advanced to the World Series, winning 318 games in that span. Baltimore averaged 96 wins in his first 12 seasons as skipper, and he managed for 27 years in the majors and minors before his club posted a losing record.

Sure, his Oriole clubs were loaded with stars like Frank Robinson, Brooks Robinson, and Jim Palmer, but Weaver was an impact manager independent of his players. He won because he was able to combine his baseball genius with the ability to keep his talented club focused and motivated.

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What goes on at the Winter Meetings, according to a guy who's been going to them for the last 30 years.

Thousands of people within baseball have gathered here in Nashville for the annual Winter Meetings. It is the largest collection of baseball personnel in one spot every year, and the attendees are as diverse a group as you'll find, with 20 or more staff from every major-league organization present, along with key staff members from minor-league affiliates, hundreds of media, hundreds of baseball-related service providers, MLB rights-holders, and other personnel affiliated with the game from all over the world, along with a large group of individuals seeking employment in the sport.

The massive Opryland complex has hosted the meetings a few times before, and it can be a somewhat unmanageable destination for those whose personal GPS is not as accurate as most. The hotel actually provides an intricate map to those who inquire, and it comes in handy numerous times before the week is over. By the end of the week, everyone will know where the Delta, Magnolia, and Cascade buildings are located.

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There was so much talent at the World Wood Bat Association World Championships that BP needed four scouts to take it all in.


This past weekend marked the annual occurrence of the largest, and most widely attended, event on the amateur scouting circuit: the World Wood Bat Association World Championship, hosted by Perfect Game USA. While Baseball Prospectus evaluators have attended the event in other capacities through their ties to the game, this was the first (but certainly not the last) year the publication sent an official group of representatives. A four-man team comprised of Dan Evans, Nick Faleris, Joe Hamrahi and Jason Parks took to the fields at the Roger Dean Complex in Jupiter, Florida and returned with some interesting on-field observations which the BP team would like to pass on to you.  

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Scouting notes on some top high school prospects from Jupiter, Florida.

The first day of the Perfect Game World Wood Bat Championship in Jupiter, Florida was abbreviated Thursday because of Hurricane Sandy, but the initial four hours provided some highlights:

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September 8, 2012 12:00 am

108 Stitches: The New Oriole Way


Dan Evans

What role have Dan Duquette and Buck Showalter played in the Orioles' 2012 turnaround?

The Orioles’ storybook season added another amazing chapter on Thursday night, as the O’s pulled off a startling four-run comeback after blowing a five-run lead in the opener of their huge four-game series against the Yankees at Camden Yards. This is Baltimore's first meaningful baseball September in more than a decade, and on the night that the Orioles unveiled a statue of Hall of Famer Cal Ripken, Jr, they erupted for six home runs to move back into a tie for the American League East lead.

The Orioles have finished under .500 for 14 consecutive years and have lost 91 or more games in nine of the last 11 seasons, including each of the last six years. But if the season had ended yesterday, the Orioles would have been postseason bound, which represents a remarkable turnaround under General Manager Dan Duquette and Manager Buck Showalter. Credit also has to be given to former GM Andy MacPhail, who hired Showalter in 2010 and laid the groundwork for this team.

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August 31, 2012 5:00 am

108 Stitches: The Importance of the Area Code Games


Dan Evans

The Area Code Games offer the best opportunity for MLB officials to evaluate amateur talent. Our resident former GM explains all.

Nearly 600 of baseball's top amateur talent evaluators converged on historic Blair Field in Long Beach, California earlier this month for the 26th Annual Area Code Games. For the 240 high school players who gathered from all over the nation, it was the toughest job interview they had ever experienced.

"A player cannot attend the Area Code Games and hide," said UCLA Head Coach John Savage.

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BP's resident former GM explains what the deadline is like for the people pulling the trigger on trades.

As we announced earlier this month, former Los Angeles Dodgers GM, major-league executive, and player agent Dan Evans has joined Baseball Prospectus as a regular contributor. In his first article, he explains what the trade deadline is like from a general manager's perspective. Dan will be answering your questions in his chat this Wednesday at 1:00 PM ET, so submit your questions now.

Tension? Absolutely. Anxiety? Sure. Pressure? Without a doubt. Enjoyment? No question.

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