Goodbye and Thank You

© Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

I’m sorry this has taken so long. I saw your tweets wondering where I was and when the next podcast would post, but I couldn’t say anything yet. When you go to work for a team, getting from agreeing to terms to actually starting involves dotting all sorts of I’s and crossing all sorts of T’s.

But now I can tell you that last week, I accepted a position with the Minnesota Twins. I’ll be serving as the team’s Special Assistant, Player Personnel; my streak of baseball titles that contain a comma continues. I will be providing individual player assessments, as well as broader process advice across the team’s international, pro, and amateur player evaluation groups. The role is similar to the one I had in Houston. I used to joke that I had the best job in the organization, only I wasn’t joking. I didn’t think I’d get to say that again while working for a team, but getting to know the front office group in Minnesota convinced me that it was time to step back into the fray. They’re an incredible group of people and I can’t wait to be a part of the organization.

I had plenty of discussions with other teams during my year-plus away from that side of the industry. I turned down some deeper talks and one out-of-the-blue job offer, but it just never felt right. Maybe it was me, maybe it was them, maybe it wasn’t the time. Quite frankly, I was at peace with never working for a team again. That’s not even the right phrase. I was exceptionally happy working at FanGraphs, and as excited as I am to be joining the Twins, it comes with some bittersweet feelings regarding my exit from this wonderful place.

This is the part of the speech where I roll off names while the producer tries to figure out when to start playing the music to drive me off the stage. Eric Longenhagen’s dedication to his work makes me worry about him a bit (“We’ve gotta look at these eight DSL guys somebody just told me about before we lock in the rankings”), but he serves his readers exceptionally well and provides the most in-depth prospect coverage around. Working with him and Tess Taruskin on prospects was a delight. Ben Clemens is one of those people I always want to talk to because I can guarantee that every conversation is going to change the way I think about something. Jay Jaffe is the ultimate professional, a writer who not only owns the Hall of Fame space but can also deliver excellent analysis on other subjects as well. I have seen and worked with team projection systems developed by squads of well-paid programmers and analysts, and Dan Szymborski’s ZIPS is the equal or better of any of them. Speaking of teams and the tools they use, many have simply stopped keeping their own internal depth charts in favor of Jason Martinez’s RosterResource pages. And if you read anything I wrote here and thought it was good, it’s because managing editor (or as I like to call her, editor-in-chief) Meg Rowley made it good, as it surely didn’t arrive in the queue that way. The group of people and the quality of the work at FanGraphs is unparalleled in the online baseball space, and while I won’t be a part of it anymore, I know that I will still use the site daily for both business and pleasure.

Of course, a website isn’t much without readers. If you were a weekly visitor to my goofy chats, thank you. I looked forward to 11 AM every Monday knowing that I would get smart questions with just enough silliness thrown in to make those 90 minutes one of the highlights of my week. And if you responded to me on Twitter, via email, or in the comments to let me know you enjoyed something I wrote, thank you. It’s scary to push something with your name on it out to a broad audience, and it’s wonderful when it’s met with positive feedback.

Then there is Chin Music. I had a blast doing it and it seems like you had a blast listening. Podcasting is different from writing — it creates much more of a relationship between the creator and the audience — and the response I got to the show was downright touching. Thanks so much to everyone who reached out about the podcast, especially those who told me how much it meant to them as they navigated difficult times. I have so much to thank David Appelman for and one of those things was saying, “Sure!” when I told him I wanted to do a podcast that might run long and meander away from baseball.

I’ll miss sharing my thoughts with all of the readers and listeners at FanGraphs, and I’ll miss working with the incredible group of people here. I told people it would take a unicorn job for me to even think about leaving the site, and the Minnesota Twins happened to show up at my door with just such a beast.

Time to take another ride.





Kevin Goldstein is a National Writer at FanGraphs.

153 Comments
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CC AFCmember
1 month ago

Your coverage has been so good that I knew it was only a matter of time before someone snapped you up again. Thanks, best luck, and try not to freeze

sadtrombonemember
1 month ago
Reply to  CC AFC

I was pretty convinced that the moment someone made him a good enough offer, he was gone. The only reason he was here was because he didn’t want to work for a team, and the moment that changed, teams would snap him up.

tz
1 month ago
Reply to  sadtrombone

Helps if that team just had one heck of an offseason…..

terencemann
1 month ago
Reply to  CC AFC

Minneapolis isn’t as bad as other cities in the winter. It’s the humidity in their short summmer that sucks.Also, at least half the box seats in Target Field look directly into the sun during midsummer day games.

BurleighGrimes
1 month ago
Reply to  terencemann

MInneapolis is insanely cold in the winter lol.

Woody1937member
1 month ago
Reply to  BurleighGrimes

But compared to Winnipeg it’s not that bad!

sadtrombonemember
1 month ago
Reply to  Woody1937

There’s a place in Quebec that has a yearly average temp of 46 F. Yearly. Average. In January the average high is 17 degrees F. The average low is -2 F.

This might not be so noteworthy except that (1) almost nobody lives in most of Canada, and (2) this city has 150K people in it. Why 150K people in a country of 40M decided to live in this horrific place, I don’t know.

gettwobrute79member
1 month ago
Reply to  sadtrombone

I’d guess they live there for poutine.

sadtrombonemember
1 month ago
Reply to  gettwobrute79

See but if they all lived somewhere else, the poutine would also be somewhere else…

tz
1 month ago
Reply to  sadtrombone

How about the 600K people living in Vladivostok? Same latitude as Nice, France (which has palm trees and an all-time record low of 19F), but has a yearly average high temp of 48 F.

And no poutine, just Putin. 🙁

Last edited 1 month ago by tz
Paul Sporermember
1 month ago
Reply to  terencemann

What other cities, ones in Alaska?! 😂 And KG coming from Houston can definitely handle humidity, which along with traffic is Houston’s chief export.

wrongem
1 month ago
Reply to  terencemann

I grew up in the Twin Cities and the suggestion that summer, not winter, is the punishing season there has my mind truly reeling.

ntnhenderson
1 month ago
Reply to  CC AFC

If it’s the same as his Houston gig then he only has to be there a few times a month.