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AuthorI'm Ned Colletti, former GM of the LA Dodgers. Ask me anything.

Oct 18th 2017 by NedColletti • 16 Questions • 162 Points

Hi, everyone. I'm Ned Colletti, General Manager of the Los Angeles Dodgers from 2006-2014. I'm currently promoting my new book THE BIG CHAIR. You can buy it here: http://bit.ly/2yobxjn

Before the Dodgers, I was an assistant General Manager of the San Francisco Giants after getting my start with the Chicago Cubs (my home team). Currently, I'm a baseball analyst on Spectrum SportsNet LA.

Proof: https://twitter.com/realnedcolletti/status/919963754254569477

Ask me anything - I'm ready!

UPDATE: Great questions all around - we had fun! More questions than I could answer . . . thanks for having me, Reddit!

Q:

Hi, Ned!

What was it that you saw in Justin Turner that no other team did? Scouting reports? Or was it just this gut feeling? Definitely one of your best moves during your tenure as GM, so thank you!

A:

We had decided to not resign three very good players - Skip Shumaker, Nick Punto and Jerry Hairston, Jr. I felt we needed a younger player who could play multiple positions. JT was a good offensive player at that point. He was also younger. He was from LA so he knew how special the Dodgers are. We thought he was going to be an average fielder and a good hitter. He has turned out to be a tremendous hitter, defender and leader. He worked during the off-seasons to go from a solid utility player, to a star on a great team. Hard work paid off for him. Very proud of him.


Q:

Ned, how excited are you see a NL Pennant coming our way soon?

A:

Well, there is still another game to win - typically the last one is the hardest to win. If that would come to pass, I don't know that I have the words to explain what it really means to me. Winning is difficult; winning a pennant is so very difficult. It would be one of the grandest highlights of my life and professional career. And it would put the franchise in position, for the all-time professional highlight, a World Series Championship.


Q:

Hey Ned!!! Exciting times in Dodgerland these days....and we owe a lot of it to you!!!

Most underrated food in Chavez Ravine?

A:

Thank you. Many people for many years worked, made tough decisions and sacrificed a lot to have a team like the 2017 Dodgers.


Q:

Hey Ned. What was your honest projection of Kershaw when you drafted him? Hes been a blast to watch.

A:

I thought he had a chance to be the ace of a staff or at least a number 2 starter. I don't think anyone could project an 18-year-old to be a Hall of Famer. The number of twists and turns a career can take are many. The growth I have seen in him from June 2006, has been enormous - both on and off the field. He is a once-in-a-generation pitcher and an even better person.


Q:

How much do you enjoy teaching at Pepperdine?

A:

I love teaching at Pepperdine University. It has been one of the best opportunities I have ever had. The Sports Management program there is growing and leadership is adding very smart staff, people who are not only intellectual, but also have successful in-the-field experience. It has provided me with an opportunity to give back some of the blessings I have been given. I find so many parts of my career, I can now explain to a young person and perhaps help them in their lives and careers. The students have been excellent. They are first and foremost, wonderful people. They provide me with hope. They also teach me.


Q:

What makes the Dodgers a special team?

A:

The Dodgers are very talented to start with; but that doesn't make it a championship calibre team. They are a close knit group and they play smart and pay attention to every detail of the game. Offensively, they make pitchers throw strikes - they don't chase out of the zone. From the mound, they don't walk many hitters and their pitching plans are sound. They are also an unselfish group. Dave Roberts and the front office have done a tremendous job of building, sustaining and fortifying a winning culture. That's what makes them special IMO.


Q:

What is it like becoming an analyst from SNLA?

Thank Ned!

A:

It has been a great experience working with SNLA. The people who comprise the staff are some of the finest people I have ever been around. It is a wonderful team of people. It has kept me connected to the game and to the Dodgers. It has been a challenge for me as well.


Q:

What's your favorite pizza place in Chicago?

A:

Momma Maria's...western suburbs...not a chain...but very good. Thin crust the best!


Q:

Hi Ned! Can't wait to read your new book. It's on my wish list to the Wife :) my question is... Greg Maddux. What made him so dominating with a fastball in the Mid 80's?

A:

Thought process, clean delivery, photographic memory, genius, fearless, ability to execute.


Q:

How did you get your start working in baseball? Who was your mentor while you were building your baseball career? What advice would you give to someone who is trying to break into the industry?

A:

I had many mentors in baseball. During my early years with the Cubs it was Dallas Green and Jim Finks - two of the greatest leaders I have ever been around. I learned from very wise and smart baseball men - Don Zimmer, Jim Frey, John Vukovich, Lee Elia, Billy Connors. In SF, it was Dusty Baker and Bob Quinn and one of the wisest men I have ever met - Felipe Alou. Of course, Brian Sabean is also someone who taught me a lot. In LA, it was a pleasure to work with Joe Torre - smart, wise, successful - and Don Mattingly - one of the best hitters during his playing career and an extremely hard worker. My advice is to get in the door - don't pass on opportunities because it isn't the perfect job. Once you have a chance, prove to leadership that you are talented, honorable, relentless, humble and have integrity - out work everyone - first in; last out, day after day. Maximize what you have a chance to control: effort, thought-process, dedication, etc.


Q:

My friend Tyler is getting married in a few months. Do you have any words of advice for him? He's a huge Giants fan, for what it's worth.

A:

always be kind...kindness rules.


Q:

What work did you have to do to prepare for being an analyst?

What's your favorite play in baseball?

Thanks for coming on Reddit!

A:

Preparation on the opponent, on the Dodgers always a key. Understanding how a show works was something I had to learn. But I had great teachers at SNLA. Research and preparation two keys to being good at anything.

My favorite play in baseball is the handshake after a victory.


Q:

What was something that you had to do as a part of your job that the average fan wouldn't think of?

A:

Well that's a great question. I think there are many critical considerations, one is: Patience is indeed a virtue and it is tough to always possess, but it is mandatory. Hard to do with a sport that plays pretty much every day for 6-7 months. I evaluated in very small increments. Plus, there is always a lot more going on behind-the-scenes that fans are not privy too.


Q:

Ned- thank you for everything! Fun question, what's your favorite pasta dish?

A:

Chicken Vesuvio...Mario's Table or Tufano's...both Chicago landmarks. family owned...il Pastaio in Beverly Hills my favorite LA spot...although they don't have the Vesuvio, the mezzaluna there is excellent.


Q:

What's the funniest prank you've ever witnessed in the club house?

A:

too many to write down..


Q:

Hi Ned, do you have a favorite behind the scenes Juan Uribe story?

A:

a few...was a big time player when the heat was on...