Holbert Excited For Second Voyage
March 26, 2009
"I am very thankful for the opportunity to come back," said Holbert in an interview in Goodyear, Arizona this spring. "With me still being young in my managerial career, I did not feel that I needed to be pushed in any way to try to go up to Kinston or Akron, and I feel like it is a good opportunity for me to come back here for a second year. I can learn a few more things as I made some mistakes [last year], so I hope I can learn from those mistakes, repeat the success we had as a unit last year, and build upon it."
Not only was last season Holbert's debut as a manager, but it also marked his first season in the Indians organization after coming over from the Cincinnati Reds. It was a learning experience for him, and he hopes to build on all that he learned last season.
"It was a good experience, no doubt about it," said Holbert. "I definitely had to learn some patience because now I am running the whole ship managing not only the players, but also my staff and the front office. So there are a lot of things I have to juggle, and different hats I have to put on. So I think to come back for a second year will allow me to benefit from the things I did right and wrong last year. I think it will be a great opportunity for me now that I have my feet wet to build upon last year."
Holbert was not only a first year manager least season, but he was also learning a lot about his new staff members and the Indians organization itself. Now that he has a year in the books and feels more comfortable with the organization and his staff, the transition will be much easier for him at the start of the season this year than it was last year.
"I think it will be easier because going in last year I was pretty much the new guy," said Holbert. "My staff and the organization had to learn about me and my little quirks and everything else. So, I think coming into my second season with Jimmy Rickon (hitting coach) and Jeremy Heller (athletic trainer) coming back it helps. Tony Arnold is the new guy on our staff, but he has been in the organization for awhile and I was able to hang around and talk with him in spring training last year. So I think it will be a good thing as we will have a feel for each other and things should run smoother. There is no doubt about it that last year went well, but if things went well last year there is no reason not to believe they will run better this year."
Pitching coaches Ruben Niebla and Tony Arnold have flip-flopped roles this season, with Niebla going to Akron to follow up with some of the players he has worked with over the past two to three years in Lake County, and Arnold is coming down to Lake County to work with the next batch of young pitching prospects. The pitching coach is arguably the most important coach on a manager