A 2010 graduate of Williams, Jim Entwisle returned to campus as an infield coach for two years under head coach Bill Barrale. A walk-on candidate, Entwisle left as a four-year letterman having played in the middle infield for the Ephs under head coach Bill Barrale.
Entwisle was the recipient of the prestigious James R. Briggs Baseball Award at Williams, which is "presented annually to a member of the varsity baseball team regardless of graduating class who, in the opinion of his teammates, best embodies the ideals of leadership, teamwork, and the values of the student-athlete."
Today Entwisle is serving as an Advanced Scouting Trainee with the Washington Nationals, the first D.C. baseball team to advance to the playoffs in Major League Baseball since 1933.
Eph Sports Information was able to catch up to Entwisle in this busiest of times for him and a most exciting time for the Nationals and ask him some questions.
What did you major in at Williams?
"I majored in both Spanish and Economics at Williams."
|Entwisle turns two vs. Amherst|
"I'm not sure he knows this, but my favorite professor at Williams was Professor Scott Wong [History]. I've always been very interested in WW II, so I took his "Social and Cultural History of WW II" class my senior year. His class provided a new and interesting perspective on the war, and I enjoyed it immensely. That and the fact, that he is a Philadelphia Eagles fan like myself, are the reasons he is probably my favorite.
We used to talk about that and Williams baseball on occasion. I always appreciated how he took an interest in the lives of his students."
When you came to Williams did you have any thoughts about working for a MLB team?
"I think once I realized that I would never play professional baseball (a realization that occurred a long time ago), I knew I wanted to work in baseball professionally. It's an exciting and competitive industry, and I was exposed to it when I interned for the Phillies during high school. I'd say that's right around the time my interest in doing this started."
What did you learn from Eph head baseball coach Bill Barrale as a player and a coach?
"I could go on for a while simply discussing what I learned from coach Barrale during my six years at Williams. Perhaps the most important concept I learned is that of personal accountability. Life becomes much simpler when you take responsibility for your own shortcomings and work to improve them.
Early on in my career at Williams, Coach Barrale told me some things about my game that I probably didn't want to hear, but they were nevertheless things I needed to hear. That made me a much stronger person; I realized that I wasn't ever as good as I thought I was, and that I needed to work harder. As a result, I find myself constantly trying to improve."
How did you get the position with the Nationals?
"To make a long story short, my older sister Katherine played field hockey and lacrosse at Middlebury, and my younger sister, Anne, plays field hockey there now. Basically through that Middlebury connection, I got into contact with Erin Quinn (the AD there), who put me in contact with the Nationals' Coordinator of Advance Scouting and Video, Erick Dalton, who is a Middlebury graduate. I was able to get him on the phone a couple of times, and I was lucky enough that they decided to bring me on."
Of course there was a Williams connection to the hiring of Entwisle too. Enter Mark Scialabba '02 The Nationals' Director of Minor League Operations. And you've crossed paths with Mark Scialabba?
"The front office is pretty small, so I have had a lot of interaction with all of the executives, including Mark. I had actually met Mark previously to my time here, and he was one of the people who interviewed me.
Additionally, I worked on a DVD project for Mark that is used in our Instructional League for coaching purposes. Aside from being truly good at what he does, Mark is a great guy and I enjoy talking about Williams with him whenever I get the chance. He was a great baseball player in his time at Williams."
Scialabba, a catcher for the Ephs, was the 2002 NESCAC Baseball Player of the Year.
Does your position end with the end of the baseball season?
"Originally it was supposed to end with the conclusion of the season, but they have asked me to remain with them until the MLB Winter Meetings in December, and I have gladly accepted."
Sounds like you work countless hours. What's a typical day like?
* Chart minor league game(s)
* Make video playlists for players to watch pregame
* Enter hitting and pitching splits for upcoming opponents into our database
* Compile the Advance Scouting Report Books
* Watch the game/scout opposing pitcher/hitter
"I get to watch a lot of the games, but that also depends on how much work there is to be done. It is definitely a great job perk, though."
What kinds of future jobs is this job good training for and are you planning to continue on in MLB?
"I am definitely planning on working in MLB in the future. Thus far I've had a great experience and I love what I do. It makes the long hours seem short. I really like the scouting aspect of my job, so a future as a Scouting Director or the like is something in which I'm really interested.
I think with my coaching background, player evaluation is something I am good at, and I certainly enjoy it. A lot of people in this industry work to become a GM, and for me, that too is the ultimate goal. I have a long way to go before that ever becomes a reality. Right now I'm just trying to make an impression on people and hopefully, I'll stick somewhere."