Peter Wagoner is currently the general manager of Palm Springs Power Baseball. A fan of every team with the name, “Cleveland” in it, Wagoner grew up as a Cleveland Indians fan. I had the pleasure of interviewing Mr. Wagoner and he rewarded me with valuable information and advice. Please sit back, relax and check out my interview with Mr. Wagoner (I know I would)!
JE: How did you come to enjoy baseball?
PW: My dad is a baseball fan so I was raised a Cleveland Indians fan.
JE: What is your fondest baseball memory?
PW: My fondest baseball memory personally was winning the 16 year old Virginia State Babe Ruth title in 1997.
JE: What is your dream job?
PW: My dream job would be to work in the front office of an MLB organization.
JE: Who is your favorite current Major League Baseball player?
PW: My favorite current MLB player is Dr. Smooth, Michael Brantley.
JE: As a GM, what was your opinion of the Athletics – Cubs trade? (Russell for Samardzija and Hammel)
PW: I think it was a good trade for both sides. The A’s haven’t been able to get past Detroit and I think the two arms will help them in that endeavor. The Cubs were able to pick up some good prospects in return. I think both teams got what they wanted.
JE: Do you have a specific way of evaluating players?
PW: Obviously statistics do a good job of leveling out the playing field. With pitchers, you want to see velocity and a repeatable motion that will keep a guy healthy and out of mechanical issues. Position players are a little harder to generalize but you want to see someone with a good approach at the plate, someone who will have productive at-bats.
JE: What was your opinion of the Cleveland Cavaliers signing Lebron James?
PW: I’m excited about LeBron coming back to Cleveland. The city has gone 50 years without a title and with his return the Cavs are the closest to changing that. It’s good for the city of Cleveland and I look forward to watching him this year.
JE: Who is your favorite MILB player?
PW: My favorite MiLB player is the Indians’ top prospect, Francisco Lindor. He’s a plus defensive shortstop who switch hits, has speed and should hit for a high average while providing a little bit of pop at the top of the lineup.
JE: Do you happen to know anyone that either works in Major League Baseball or Minor League Baseball?
PW: I know a couple of people that work in MLB and MiLB.
JE: What would your advice be for a kid who would like to become a sports GM?
PW: That is a tough question. There is no exact route to becoming a sports GM. Study an applicable subject in school. Seriously consider an advanced degree. Make sure you choose an internship that will help you with your career path. Start networking and building work relationships as soon as you can. Overall, always try and put yourself in the best position to be successful.
*Click the link below to go visit the Palm Spring Power’s website!
A big thanks to Mr. Wagoner for putting work aside for a few minutes to respond to this interview via email!