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Scott Hatteberg, first base, and life imitating “Moneyball”

Feb 15, 2013, 2:49 PM EDT

moneyball screencap

The biggest laugh in “Moneyball” comes when Billy Beane and Ron Washington visit Scott Hatteberg at home to talk him into learning first base:

Hatteberg: I’ve only ever played catcher.

Beane: It’s not that hard, Scott. Tell him, Wash.

Washington: It’s incredibly hard.

Now the real Hatteberg is in A’s camp as a spring training coach and spent yesterday teaching outfield prospect Michael Taylor to play first base. Casey Pratt of CSNBayArea.com sets the scene:

“I thought Ron Washington was such a genius as far as an instructor. I know behind the scenes he was saying how bad I was,” Hatteberg joked. “He really worked on the mental part and the confidence part and we’re trying to do the same with Michael.”

On Thursday, Hatteberg gave instruction as special assistant Phil Garner chimed in. Sacramento River Cats hitting coach Greg Sparks hit grounders to Taylor as he practiced at first base. River Cats manager Steve Scarsone provided insights as he stood to the left of the bag and took the occasional toss from Taylor.

And now there’s already a scene for the “Moneyball” sequel.

  1. butchhuskey - Feb 15, 2013 at 3:28 PM

    Michael Taylor, pickin’ machine

  2. APBA Guy - Feb 15, 2013 at 3:38 PM

    The A’s are being realistic in a sense. With Carter gone, and the high likelihood that Brandon Moss will not duplicate his .950+ OPS from last year, someone is going to have to platoon with Moss. My bet is on Seth Smith, because Taylor has never hit in the majors.But it doesn’t hurt to give him some reps and see how much work would need to be done.

  3. makeham98 - Feb 18, 2013 at 9:30 AM

    Moneyball. . . is that the one about spending just enough money to look like you have a competitive product, although everyone knows that the movie won’t break any records or win you much of anything? I heard a baseball team tried that approach too.

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