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 Post subject: Re: The SEAL Training
PostPosted: Thu Jan 17, 2013 6:16 pm 
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J_C_Steel wrote:
Willton wrote:
No. 9 wrote:
Just a reminder here folks . . . the Navy Seals exercises lasted 3 days. I sometimes get the idea that some want to portray the Pirates' organization as completely abandoning their prior training program and replacing it with Navy Seals exercises. If anything, the Seals program was a supplement to what they were doing previously.

If you think that the 3 days would have been better spent with Charlie Lau, great. Maybe with Tony Robbins, fine. Maybe you think that running bases for 3 straight hours is better. Maybe a long weekend on a golf course . . . again, its 3 days. Its not causing any baseball player's skills to deteriorate.

It certainly stands in stark contrast to the "Hell Week" that JC has been repeatedly flogging.


Agreed. Three days of supervised Navy SEAL training is one thing; instituting a "Hell Week" with military-style drills not supervised by military personnel is another. I don't support either for a baseball team, but I'm more willing to entertain the former. The latter is just risky and dumb. Period.

I'll agree with you there, but are we certain that the PBC instituted a "Hell Week" exercise with its minor leaguers?

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 Post subject: Re: The SEAL Training
PostPosted: Thu Jan 17, 2013 6:23 pm 
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Yup. The SEAL training was September 14-16.

"Hell Week" started on October 14.

http://triblive.com/sports/dejankovacev ... z2IG0RmrQt

On Oct. 14 at 11:45 p.m., the Pirates‘ minor-league coaches and instructors broke the midnight silence by banging on dorm rooms throughout the complex shouting, “It‘s Hell Week! It‘s Hell Week!”

Players were told to be dressed in 20 minutes and to meet outside by the batting cage. Waiting there were Kyle Stark, the assistant general manager and architect of the team‘s “Hoka Hey” ways, as well as Larry Broadway, the first-year farm director who never before held any instructional position at any level of baseball.

Look it up.

Broadway told the assembled players this would be their “rite of passage” to become Pirates, then sent them on a two-hour scavenger hunt for envelopes hidden across the complex.

(Don‘t ask. No idea.)

At 5 a.m., after a wink or two of sleep, they were bused over to Bradenton Beach for a two-mile run, followed by relay races in which they ran back and forth filling garbage cans with sand.

(Don‘t ask. No idea.)

This garbage — pardon the pun — went on all week.

On the “Hell Week” finale Friday, with a 10 a.m. road game on tap, the players again were awoken at 5 a.m. This time, it was to perform sliding drills on a still-dark field lit by a solitary quartz lamp. The coaches took turns manning second base and tried — not always successfully — to leap over players sliding into the bag, generally making a mess on the basepaths.


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 Post subject: Re: The SEAL Training
PostPosted: Thu Jan 17, 2013 8:08 pm 
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Rochester wrote:
For starters, I never really gave a crap about the Buccos doing this with prospects. I'm not promoting an agenda about a particular journalist, the practice itself, or the FO.

Further, I recognize that the SEAL training was only part of the whole Hoka Hey thing, and not it's entirety.

So, I present this video as a backdrop. These are Buffalo Sabres prospects, including 2012 first rounder Zemgus Girgenesens doing SEAL training in Buffalo. patrick Kaleta, a veteran (most likely hated by most of you) joined them.

For entertainment purposes only:

Link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=pl ... IZBXzso7Y0

(Trying to get it embedded.)

Obviously the video is a fake, because we all know from reading the Trib that no professional sports team has ever utilized that sort of dangerous training.

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 Post subject: Re: The SEAL Training
PostPosted: Thu Jan 17, 2013 10:14 pm 
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sisyphus wrote:
Obviously the video is a fake, because we all know from reading the Trib that no professional sports team has ever utilized that sort of dangerous training.


Who at the Trib said that? I recall reading it reported, correctly, that no baseball team engaged in this sort of thing. And I posted in this very thread why that is the case.


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 Post subject: Re: The SEAL Training
PostPosted: Thu Jan 17, 2013 11:21 pm 
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http://www.baseballnews.com/features/st ... aining.htm

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 Post subject: Re: The SEAL Training
PostPosted: Fri Jan 18, 2013 9:53 am 
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I definitely get JC's point about Hell Week. Some of the elements in his quote above do sound stupid, if not at least a tinge risky.

My real reason for posting the video (aside from the fact that I bleed Blue and Gold in the winter) is that I wanted you guys to see what was most likely the same kind of drills the 3 Day part entailed.

The Sabres, however, did not shoot pucks at a goalie in the dark. So point taken.

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 Post subject: Re: The SEAL Training
PostPosted: Fri Jan 18, 2013 11:47 am 
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No. 9 wrote:
http://www.baseballnews.com/features/stories/navysealtraining.htm


So you're on board with it because an amateur women's softball team did it? Really?

I stand by my points about why such "teamwork" training is potentially useful in true "team" sports, but not so much in baseball. I also stand by my point that the derivative military-style training the Pirates carried out during "Hell Week," without Navy SEAL supervision, was risky and dumb.


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 Post subject: Re: The SEAL Training
PostPosted: Fri Jan 18, 2013 12:27 pm 
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Christ Almighty.
Let me see if I can repeat my point for the umpteenth time. Despite efforts by many to portray the Pirates hiring Acumen Performance Group to conduct a three day Seals training course as ridiculous, lacking any semblance of benefit, having no application to the sport of baseball, etc., I'm merely pointing out that there are other teams that have hired this group or other Seals groups to not only "team build" but also to strengthen individual mental toughness and to advance an athlete's performance through adversity.

I get it. You see absolutely no value in it whatsoever. You think that it has no benefit because baseball is an "individual" sport and not a team sport. Fine. You are entitled to your opinion. I happen to think that it is a knee jerk, ill-thought and outcome determinative analysis which just happens to mirror your favorite columnist in Pittsburgh.

Other teams are doing it. APG claims that it has been contacted by other professional baseball teams. Whether they've been retained by other teams, I don't know. And, to be frank, I don't really care. Unless and until someone can demonstrate to me why Gerrit Cole or any other player's development has been hampered by these exercises, I see it pretty much as a non-issue. I've posted many times here that I don't know whether any benefit is conferred by such a program. I just don't see the downside and I don't get why people have their "panties twisted" about it. Unless they are advancing an agenda . . . that's the only thing that makes sense to me.

BTW, I posted the USA Softball link because of the reference to "Hell Week" which was apparently advanced by the Seal group. I think its funny that a bunch of women's softball players can survive a Hell Week but a bunch of minor leaguers complain about it and a bunch of people typing at their computers are outraged by it.

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 Post subject: Re: The SEAL Training
PostPosted: Fri Jan 18, 2013 12:39 pm 
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One other point . . . baseball is a team sport. While it differs from the "team" aspects of basketball, football, hockey and others, it remains a team sport. If "team building" includes building faith and trust in teammates, then perhaps a pitcher will trust his infield to make plays behind him; an outfielder will trust his cut-off man to make a good relay throw; an infielder will trust the first baseman to scoop a somewhat errant throw; a pitcher may trust his catcher to block a curve ball in the dirt.

Also, the linked article clearly demonstrates that the benefit sought by the US Women's Softball team was primarily an individual mental benefit. To assist an athlete to understand that a human can acheive about 10 times what he/she thinks that he/she can acheive. Maybe that helps a physically and mentally tired pitcher get through the sixth inning, maybe it assists a batter who is down 0-2 and facing Aroldis Chapman.

You claimed that the Seal Training was only about team building and then proceeded to argue that baseball isn't a team sport. I disagree on both points. I think that you are creating false assumptions to advance your point. But . . . if you want to show me where the Seal training isn't about challenging an individual athlete to acheive the greatest performance possible and why that doesn't apply to what you call an "individual" sport, I'll be happy to read it. And, BTW, there are many elite athletes that participate in Seal Training that aren't participants in team sports (ie; cycling, swimming, track, etc.)

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 Post subject: Re: The SEAL Training
PostPosted: Fri Jan 18, 2013 2:20 pm 
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In my first post in this thread I wrote the following:

Training overseen by Navy SEALs was never the biggest problem in my mind. To me, the biggest issue was the Pirates taking that training and applying it during a "Hell Week" when they put prospects in danger without any trained supervision.

That's pretty clear. While I don't see any real benefit to Navy SEAL training for baseball players, I said it wasn't the "biggest problem."

In a later post, I wrote the following:

Three days of supervised Navy SEAL training is one thing; instituting a "Hell Week" with military-style drills not supervised by military personnel is another. I don't support either for a baseball team, but I'm more willing to entertain the former. The latter is just risky and dumb. Period.

Once again, I acknowledge that I would be "willing to entertain" three days of supervised Navy SEAL training, but I would not support a "Hell Week" that did not include such supervision and which involved making players run through risky drills with bad lighting. As I've said again and again, that's just risky and dumb.

My views on this issue don't perfectly match those espoused by Dejan Kovacevic. However, those views are informed by his reporting and by reporting done by others at Yahoo! and other sports outlets. The Pirates' "Hell Week" was a bad idea, No. 9. In fact, you're the only poster I see on this board defending that particular player development tactic, which involved players being woken at all hours and drills conducted with poor lighting.

Whatever perceived benefit -- real or imaginary, mental or physical -- the three-day Navy SEAL training imparted to the Pirates' prospects who participated was not furthered by the team's ridiculous "Hell Week." That's my position. Clear as crystal. Now kindly refrain from mischaracterizing my position and battling strawmen.


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 Post subject: Re: The SEAL Training
PostPosted: Fri Jan 18, 2013 2:47 pm 
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It is my understanding that this exercise was supervised by a company run be former Navy Seals. I would consider that reliable supervision. I have also stated that I don't have any problem with the exercise. To paint No. 9 as the only poster without an issue with the exercise is not valid..... 8-) 8-)


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 Post subject: Re: The SEAL Training
PostPosted: Fri Jan 18, 2013 3:05 pm 
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Az Bucco fan wrote:
It is my understanding that this exercise was supervised by a company run be former Navy Seals. I would consider that reliable supervision. I have also stated that I don't have any problem with the exercise. To paint No. 9 as the only poster without an issue with the exercise is not valid..... 8-) 8-)


Thanks for letting me know your stance. If "Hell Week" was run by a company with former Navy SEALs, then they're the most incompetent Navy SEALs around. Conducting sliding drills with poor light on a bad field is a great way to get a prospect injured.


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 Post subject: Re: The SEAL Training
PostPosted: Fri Jan 18, 2013 8:25 pm 
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J_C_Steel wrote:
If "Hell Week" was run by a company with former Navy SEALs, then they're the most incompetent Navy SEALs around. Conducting sliding drills with poor light on a bad field is a great way to get a prospect injured.


Navy SEALs don't care about or are experts on baseball.

The most 'incompetent' team of SEALs could probably still lead a successful infiltration and coup/overthrow of a third world nation.

So while your complaint may very well be valid, it really only is such viewed from the eyes of a civilian.

To a SEAL (or any Special Forces Soldier), 'ideal conditions' does not apply and 'danger' is as common as breathing.

If anything, they probably intended for such 'unsafe' conditions (whether or not it is true, who knows?). If that were the case, the failure would be whoever allowed the training in the first place.

Asking SEALs to 'train' anyone is like handing your car keys to Evel Knievel; prepare for damage control.

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 Post subject: Re: The SEAL Training
PostPosted: Fri Jan 18, 2013 8:58 pm 
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NSMaster56 wrote:
J_C_Steel wrote:
If "Hell Week" was run by a company with former Navy SEALs, then they're the most incompetent Navy SEALs around. Conducting sliding drills with poor light on a bad field is a great way to get a prospect injured.


Navy SEALs don't care about or are experts on baseball.

The most 'incompetent' team of SEALs could probably still lead a successful infiltration and coup/overthrow of a third world nation.

So while your complaint may very well be valid, it really only is such viewed from the eyes of a civilian.

To a SEAL (or any Special Forces Soldier), 'ideal conditions' does not apply and 'danger' is as common as breathing.

If anything, they probably intended for such 'unsafe' conditions (whether or not it is true, who knows?). If that were the case, the failure would be whoever allowed the training in the first place.

Asking SEALs to 'train' anyone is like handing your car keys to Evel Knievel; prepare for damage control.

I've been against this since the story broke. What you say here is sort of why(and I don't pretend to have any knowledge whatsoever about SEAL training).
I want Navy SEALS to go through this training because of what they signed up to do. It's what sets them apart(among other things I'm sure). I want my baseball prospects to go through baseball training...it's what they signed up for. It's why they became ball players. I don't care if it was for 3 days, a week, a month...whatever. Can mental training help them(or anyone for that fact) prepare for their job as a ballplayer? Sure. I'll give them that. Even conceding that, I'm sure there are plenty of baseball related activities that can work on mental toughness too. If I was the guy that was paying all of these signing bonuses and such, I wouldn't want any of these guys put in an unnecessary, dangerous situation EVER. The whole thing doesn't make sense. Again, they are ballplayers, not Navy SEALS. And for the record that would be my opinion if every team in the league was doing it.

It seems to me Kyle Stark has this macho, bust your balls, type of make up. It has accomplished nothing for the organization. He, along with Broadway, seem to have very little baseball acumen. Poor player development and just a general lack of production should have got these guys fired...the Hoka Hey crap to me was just the final straw, and a picture of what these guys are all about.


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 Post subject: Re: The SEAL Training
PostPosted: Sat Jan 19, 2013 12:44 am 
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J_C_Steel wrote:
No. 9 wrote:
http://www.baseballnews.com/features/stories/navysealtraining.htm


So you're on board with it because an amateur women's softball team did it? Really?

I stand by my points about why such "teamwork" training is potentially useful in true "team" sports, but not so much in baseball. I also stand by my point that the derivative military-style training the Pirates carried out during "Hell Week," without Navy SEAL supervision, was risky and dumb.

There was no drill in all that training that could measure up to the crap I had to do every day for my football coach from ages 9-12.

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 Post subject: Re: The SEAL Training
PostPosted: Sat Jan 19, 2013 12:45 am 
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J_C_Steel wrote:
Az Bucco fan wrote:
It is my understanding that this exercise was supervised by a company run be former Navy Seals. I would consider that reliable supervision. I have also stated that I don't have any problem with the exercise. To paint No. 9 as the only poster without an issue with the exercise is not valid..... 8-) 8-)


Thanks for letting me know your stance. If "Hell Week" was run by a company with former Navy SEALs, then they're the most incompetent Navy SEALs around. Conducting sliding drills with poor light on a bad field is a great way to get a prospect injured.

Bullshit.

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 Post subject: Re: The SEAL Training
PostPosted: Sat Jan 19, 2013 2:03 am 
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sisyphus wrote:
J_C_Steel wrote:
No. 9 wrote:
http://www.baseballnews.com/features/stories/navysealtraining.htm


So you're on board with it because an amateur women's softball team did it? Really?

I stand by my points about why such "teamwork" training is potentially useful in true "team" sports, but not so much in baseball. I also stand by my point that the derivative military-style training the Pirates carried out during "Hell Week," without Navy SEAL supervision, was risky and dumb.

There was no drill in all that training that could measure up to the crap I had to do every day for my football coach from ages 9-12.


Sounds like someone's views have been skewed by some childhood trauma...


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 Post subject: Re: The SEAL Training
PostPosted: Sat Jan 19, 2013 4:12 am 
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Hey. I gave you some leeway on the sliding drills. That doesn't mean that everyone else is wrong about how silly the whole Hoka Hey hate is.

In fact, when I posted this, I thought I made it clear that I thought the whole line of criticism was suspect.

Yes, it has some danger.

Yes, the team aspect is not the same as hockey.

Yes, there's probably some "head shakedness" to the whole concept.

HOWEVER. It's not a big deal. Organizations do it. It is what it is. If you feel it's necessary to criticize it, cool. I get that.

That said, I think it's a tiny little piece of a bigger organizational dogma. Likely not a good one. Criticize the lead off and base running skills. Criticize our ability to hold a runner at first.

Don't criticize a concept that wants to make us winners. Yes, funda"mentals" play into that. But "mentals" do too.

EDIT: In other words: We need both from management: Fundamentals AND winning.

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 Post subject: Re: The SEAL Training
PostPosted: Sat Jan 19, 2013 4:22 am 
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As Dan noted earlier in this thread, my son was a varsity high school wreslter for three years and a varsity pitcher for two. His wrestling workouts were serious - carry a teammate up a hill covering about 1/2 mile, running 4-5 miles at a go, serious stretching, aerobic, etc.

When he finished wrestling season, and started full-time with baseball practice, he would joke how easy the training was. Run 2 miles? Wow ... he had been CARRYING a teammate up a hill the week prior.

Jerry Rice had a famous offseason workout regimen that many players attended. No supervision, apart from Jerry Rice and his demanding routine. The workouts were so demanding that most players reported puking from the demands ... and no team, to my knowledge, encouraged players to avoid these workouts. Quite the contrary.

I suspect that baseball players generally just don't work out to the extent that football and hockey players or wrestlers do. From what I saw of the "Seal training," it really was not much.

Running on the beach? Carrying a 50 lb. pole? Uhhh, okay. So what? It seems to me that the demands of these workouts have been overstated, a point I believe would be confirmed by anybody who played high school football, participated in wrestling, did serious distance running, played hockey, etc.


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 Post subject: Re: The SEAL Training
PostPosted: Sat Jan 19, 2013 6:49 pm 
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J_C_Steel wrote:
Sounds like someone's views have been skewed by some childhood trauma...

It wasn't traumatic. It was hard work, very hard. Like this terrible, horrible rolling of truck tires.

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