tv [untitled] CSPAN June 28, 2009 1:30am-2:00am EDT
>> this term included discussion on a great variety of subjects. you did a masterful job and provideded us with important take-aways. before adjourning, there are several other people i would like to thank. first, chief justice roberts for his willingness to address the conference at the banquet last night and to participate
in the question and answer session this morning, and i think this sessions added a lot to our traditional discussion. my good colleague, paul, i am so indebted to you for all that you have done as the program share. and judge motz, this has just been fabulous. i thought it was most informative and a great success. i can't thank you enough for all of your dedicated service in making sure that the conference was such a success. and to my good colleague, judge j. harvey wilkinson. i might be the chief judge, but he is the dean of this court.
i also want to thank sam phillips, karen and the staff of the circuit executive's office for the work they did in planning this conference and making sure that everything ran so smoothly. and finally you, the membership at this conference. all of us judges love being with us, and it gives us the opportunity to know you and form lasting friendships. this is our 76th conference, and i hope you all had a wonderful time. our 77th conference is tentatively scheduled to take place at the greenbriar june
>> up next, stan kansas ten. after that, a senate panel looks at regulation foss a banking derivative. >> this week on prime minister's questions, prime minister gordon brown discusseses the fate of british hostages in iraq. he also answers questions on government spending, the economy and u.k. jobs. following his speech, we watch their welcoming a new speaker. sunday nigh at 9:00 eastern on c-span. >> how is c-span funneleded? >> publicly funneleded. >> donations maybe? i have no idea. >> government. >> c-span gets its funding
through taxes. >> federal funding. >> sort of a public funding thing. >> i don't know. >> how is c-span funded? 30 years ago, america's cable companies created c-span as a private initiative. no government mandate, no government money. >> and now washington national's ps, stan kasten at the national press club. he talked about developing the national less baseball team. his marks are just over an hour. >> for more information about the national press club, visit our website.
solutions incorporated and a current member of the n.p.c. softball team. lisa communications. >> john allen, a reporter for congressional quarterly and the shortstop of the n.p.c. softball team. i sense a them. vice president of communications and community relations for the nationals, also a guest of our speaker. >> skipping over the podium just a moment, we have jonathan of bloomberg news, former n.p.c. president, the speaker's committee member who organized today's lunch and coach of the division championship-winning softball team. we have jeff dufour, columnist for the washington examiner. are you a member of the n.p.c. softball team? >> another team.
>> and the community relations director for the national. >> paul dixon, author of "the dixon baseball dictionary" and other books. and finally we have amy, an original member of the n.p.c. softball team. [applause] >> of the old washington senators it was often said washington, first in war, first in peace, and last in the american league. substitute nationals for senators, and national league for american, and you can describe the situation for our local major league team today and today's speaker. in fact, it is hard to think of anyone that has had a worse season than the nationals except for perhaps the republicans. [laughter] >> today's speaker, stan kasten
formerly served as president of the atlanta braves, who ran off an unprecedented 14 straight division titles. the braves haven't won since he brought his baseball expertise to the nationals. so far, however, a success on the ball field has eluded the nation's capital, despite a new stadium, attendance is down unless you count the red sox fans, so is the nats as won-loss record. still, they did beat the yankees two out of three earlier this month. [applause] >> by the way, that is the team that mr. kasten rooted for as a kid. when he spoke at the club three years ago, he talked about how he was building a club through the farm system. you can look at ryan zimmerman, the star third baseman and hjorth zimmerman and start seeing the fruits of those efforts. still they remained mired in first place.
rumors are swirling that the manager will be fired. the general manager jim bowden has left, and a permanent replacement has yet to be named. questions abound. will they be able to sign their first round draft pick, steven strawsberg, kerd the best prospect in a generation. will the owners open their pocket books a bit wider and bring in some better players so the nats aren't talked about in the same sentence as the 1962 new york mets. he has been the subject of criticism in the "washington post" and the washington times,. then again, the atlanta journal constitution once questioned why he got a contract extension. that was in 1991, two years before the braves began their winning streak. he began in baseball by walking up to ted turner and offering to work for nothing. as ted turner once told the
paper, that was an offer even i couldn't refuse. besides the braves, mr. kasten has served as president of the atlanta hawks basketball team, and the thrashers hockey team, becoming the first person ever to serve as the head of three major league teams simultaneously. mr. kasten grew up in new jersey and graduated from new york university and columbia law school. that law degree probably comes in handy when he has to negotiate contracts with agent scott boras, who is representing strawsberg. let's welcome stan kasten to the national press club. [applause] >> thank you, donna. it is always great.
>> i see so many friendly faces here in the audience. i also see plenty of media. [laughter] when i do speeches, i often start by asking do we have any media in the room today? and the reason i do, a couple of reasons. first of all, when there's no media in the room i can tell people things that i might not otherwise. but the main reason is you often see people getting in trouble for their quotes, for their stories and the routine, the knee-jerk defense is i was misquoted. let me tell you something. i have been in this business 30 years. that has never happened to me. every time i have gotten into trouble, it is because they have quoted me exactly correctly. [laughter] so i always have to be careful when i am in a group like this. i am heartened that today we have jonathan here.
he will be helping decide the questions later, and as theers while coach of the softball team, he ploomsed me softball questions, so i am really looking forward to that. i was here a couple of years ago. i want to talk to you about the things i said then. the plan that we enunciated back then, how we proceeded on that, and why the future i think for the franchise continues to be exceptionally rosie, why i continue to be so optimistic about where we are heading. first let me start by saying, again, i came here three years ago. i cannot tell you how much of love d.c. it is just thrilling being here. even on a slow, boring day for moat people, everything here is exciting, the pace, the people. not just national and international politics, the local politics gets quite exciting from time to time.
i live right downtown in what i think is the most beautiful downtown in america. so it has been nothing but a joy, nothing but a pleasure to spend as much time as i get to spend here. that has been a great part of my experience here. when the family bought this franchise, we set a course, i think, to have success across the broad spectrum, across the many metrics there are for measures success, and we talked about three things that are critically important to us. the first is the product on the field obviously. the team building through a program of long term player development and scouting. the second was the customer experience and what they go through night in and night out. and the third was community relations. those three elements. in the business setting you translate those as product, customer, brand. in our setting, it is the team
on the field, it is customer experience, and it is our community relations effort. i want to talk about all three today and talk to you about things that maybe haven't been covered well enough by all of the media outlets. i am here to share with you things you may not have heard about before. let's start with what everyone follows the most, and that is the team. i don't need to go through the history of where we were when we got this franchise and what the long-term condition was. it was clear, though, that we needed to spend a lot of time and effort on our scouting and player development apparatus. we set about to do that right away. we put a lot of money into that. we hired a lot of people, the best people that we could find to do that job. and we said at the time, and you can go back and check, that our emphasis would not be just young players, but young pitchers. the reason for that is it is
hand true since they have played baseball. it has always been about your pippers and always going to be about your pippers. it is the hardest thing to get, and after you do that, everything else gets much easier. we have spent all of our time and attention on finding young pitchers. i have a firm belief on the way to acquire young talent. first you scout on your own, second you try to acquire through trades. and finally when you are in position to take advantage of a jump, then you go after free agency. we have followed a course that has a much closer than you think by looking at the standings to doing that. i also feel strongly that you can't buy a pitching staff. you can't buy a rotation. you have to grow them. you can buy one pitcher, but you can't buy a rotation. that was our challenge when we
got here. how do we develop a young staff? well, as i said, we hired a lot more scouts. we hired the best player development people that we could, and we knew it was going to be take time. when i we want through this in atlanta, and i have told you this before. when i went through this in atlanta with my last owner, i explained how i thought we had to go forward into producing a good team. i told him for the next three or four years on the talk shows and in the newspapers, before there was interpret, back in the good old days, i said while we are growing for the next three or four years, i am going to be the village idiot. for those of you keeping score at home, i am currently in my village idiot phase in washington. that is where we are as we develop until we see the record on the field, it is easy to be critical and impatient. i totally understand that. but i think those of you who
aren't limited to just looking at the standings, who are really looking at the pieces of a franchise and the things you need to be successful can start to see what those of us on the inside have long suspected and now we are seeing. we now have today a rotation. four of them are rookies, three of them are 22. this is what we set out to do three years ago, and you can't snap your fingers and make it happen overnight. it takes time to develop the scouts, the sign and then to develop the kids and get them ready for the major leagues. you can see that in the five kids here today. and between that crop and the crop right behind them in syracuse. and then the dozen, 15, 20 names that you don't yet know behind them, we are building a franchise that is defined by young pitching, by pitching coming forward. i had a great conversation yesterday with a pitcher you probably all know named john
smoltz. played for me once upon a team. he and i went through this. we had great fun talking about this because i reminded him, which he didn't have to be reminded, what his record was at the age of 21. i also know the following statistics. three pretty good pitchers, glavine, maddux and smoltz, that we had in atlanta, all three going to the hall of fame. when they were 21 and 22 years old, those three pitchers in the major leagues had a record of 19-46. three pretty good pitchers. and i am not come pairing anyone that we have to do to any of them. that is not my point. my point is that even the best pitchers have to go through the crucible of learning how to pitch up here. they need 20, 30 or 40 starts before it kicks in, before they learn how to maximize the talent that they have. and so that that is what we are going through with
22-year-olds. it is going to still take some time. we have really ben encouraged by what we have seen so far, but there will be dips until we decide on the five final guys that comprise our rotation. but that is what it is all going to be about, getting a solid rotation. i said this winter, the 2010 season was dedicated to finding three long term major league starters. if i got three, and we got some help in the draft, we would be ready to go. it is clear to me now, and the fans would agree, not only are we going to find three solid starters out of this group, we are going to find more than three. you know the names up here. you know about the kids in syracuse, balester, mock and chico. you don't know about addwood, malone, deny my, and myers, and peacock, and smoker and on and on. that is what we are focus the on, having kids that are ready
to pitch up here, stay with us a long time, home-grown kids. no fan enjoys anything more than home-grown talent, kids that we brought and developed on our own. i often say when we won a world championship in atlanta, the most thrilling aspect of that was that the pitcher standing on the mound threw a one-hitter in the final game of the world series. the hitter who hit the home run for the only run of the notices , tom glavine, davis justice and mark wellers were all drafted by us. that is what we are setting out to build and what we are building. i know what our record is today, and believe me, it is more frustrating to me than any hundred fans could feel. i still don't sleep after losses because it is just how i am. but every night, especially in
the last month or so, i go home encouraged by another quality start, or stuff i see is going to developing into a big-time starter. we set out this off-season knowing that we had young starters coming. we set out this off-season to work on our offense. i thought we did a good job of that. and i think our owner stepped up as they have always said they will when the time was right. there were two left-handed bats that would fill our order. mark tissue, and adam dunn. we tried to get both of them, we only needed one, and we got one. i think all of you have seen the kind of impact a big left-handed bat has made in our lineup. i think we have our offense in place or about to fall into place. i think our rotation is close to coming together in a long term successful way. that leaves our bullpen which had a kind of historic
implosion in the month of april that almost ruined our season. they have settled down now. once we get our stable rotation, we will need to make sure we have a bullpen that can get these kids who have given seven good innings, they need their win. that is it the thing we have to do in this season or the next off-season. and like any championship team, we have to get the best defense that we can. it is instructive, i think, to me. back in 1991 when the braves had their first championship year, their first year in the world series, the only change that was made from 1990, which was a last place team, to 1991 which was a world series series, we signed three pieces. we signed sid green, belliard and pendleton, three defensive players. all of a sudden our pitching was a heck of a lot better.
it is amazing how that works. believe me, we understand that connection, we are aware of that, and we are on the look out for those final pieces once we get the rotation put into place. that is why i am as excite as i am about the future and about how close we are. that is my observation, but i tell you what encourages me more. in the last two weeks, our new pitching coach was once a part of a phenomenon like this, five starters who had success in oakland. he was one of those kids. he says to me sitting in the dugout during one of our innumerable rain delays this year. he said stan, this is exacting to watch. this is exactly what we went through in oakland. two days later i was on the phone with bobby cox, who unsolicited said the same thing
to me. he had never seen ross detwiler pitch. he had watched him the night before and he called me to say stan, it is really happening. and the most recent guy who said that to me was just yesterday, who is starting tonight for the boston red sox, john smoltz, who again went through this himself. he sees that we are so much closer than our standings today would suggest, and that is what gives me even more encouragement. i feel pretty good about the way things are going myself, but to hear people i really respect like that see the same things i do again makes me more encouraged than i could be just standing on my own. so that is where i think the team is going and how far we have progressed. now let me talk about the customer experience, because this is something i am very, very proud of as well. you remember three years ago when i got here, we were
playing at r.f.k., which was r.f.k. many of you loved it for your own emotional ties to it, but it clearly wasn't what modern day customers have come to want or expect. so the process was already in place to design and build this great new stadium, and i have to tell you as i travel around the country to all the new stadiums, our stadium is as fine a stadium as there is anywhere in baseball. it is more beautiful than virtually any stadium i can think of. the ease of access, the sight lines are spectacular, and i think more and more people recognize that, irrespective of that night's score, you're going to have a good time when you come to a ball game at national park, assuming it is not raining that night. for about a they are of our games so far this year, it has been raining. i understand that is going to put a bit of
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