Pirates Manger Derek Shelton Eager To Get Started

Cook and Joe Show

Joe Kapp
April 01, 2020 - 4:24 pm
Derek Shelton Pirates

John David Mercer USA Today

Pittsburgh Pirates Manger Derek Shelton has been a coach for the past 15 years in some capacity in the majors before getting his chance to be a manger when he was hired by the Pirates in November of 2019.

But due to the suspension of the season due to the corona virus….Shelton is still waiting for that chance to manage his first game.

He talked about that when he joined the Cook and Joe Show on Wednesday

“Your patience can get a little challenged at times when you are excited for a season to start like we were this year,” Shelton said. “We don’t know what’s going to happen or when it’s gonna start so just making sure were prepared and trying to stay positive because if you don’t stay positive in situations like this then the days get a lot longer…so that’s basically the message is to stay positive , keep working on the things we can work on  and when we do start really appreciate the game that we do have.”

He has been spending his time off learning more about the Pirates history and meeting with his coaching staff via chat.

So what made this job be the one he took as his first managerial job?

“I think the city in itself is exciting and they are  thirsting for a winner,” Shelton added. “Something that really stood out for me personally was the fact that Ben (Cherington) took the job as the GM. His success in terms of building things and building things from the player ops. And baseball development point is important and extremely important to our market and having a little bit of history with Ben from being in Toronto with him for a year and just kind of watching what he has done and how he has done it…I think that was the biggest selling point of knowing that were gonna do it right. Were gonna build it from the player development side and it makes the job enticing.”

Would Shelton be in favor of playing more doubleheaders or 7 inning doubleheaders to get the most out of the season?

“I think anyway we can get back to playing baseball is the most important thing,” Shelton said. “I understand the traditionalist band wanting the game but I think were at the point where everyone just wants the season to start and if there are certain adjustments that we need to make in a short period of time for there to be baseball on the field than I’m all in for that.”

Shelton though is quick to point out as eager as he is to get the season to start there are reasons that are far more important to be concerned with

“Making sure that we continue to stay safe at home and continue to take care of our health care workers and we worry about our society first before we worry about anything sports related.” Shelton said. “I think we kind of have to take it day by day. We don’t know when things are going to start and how things are going to start and  how the game is going to be played so the big part of that is just really making sure we control what we can control and kind of work off that.”

Shelton tells the guys he was in a unique situation for the way the season was supposed to start because Opening Day was scheduled to be in Tampa where he lives and then off to Chicago where he grew up and his extended family and high school friends were going to see them play and it’s hard to have that be cancelled but the hardest part might be tomorrow at 1:35 pm when he was supposed to manage his first game at PNC Park

He said he had thought about it many time standing on the field being introduced on the line in the most beautiful ballpark in baseball looking out at the Clement Bride…but there will be no game tomorrow at 1:35pm and not anytime in the near future.

“Tomorrow will probably be difficult.” Shelton said. “Not making light of anything that is going on in the world but it’s something you guys eluded to. I have worked for and looked forward to my whole career so tomorrow at 1:35 it will probably be a little emotional and a little difficult because I was looking forward to standing at home plate exchanging lineup cards on opening day.”