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>Chris Borland knows firsthand all about the challenges of early retirement [url=http://www.clevelandbrownsteamonline.com/josh-gordon-jersey]Josh Gordon Jersey Elite[/url] , having stepped away from a promising football career after one year because of concerns over head injuries.Instead of playing in front of boisterous crowds on the big NFL stage, Borland spends his time now helping other football players and military veterans make that adjustment to their new lives that often lack the thrill and competitiveness of life in the armed forces or professional sports.“One healthy thing I’d like for players to know, whether they’re active or former, is you likely can’t replicate the thrill of playing before 100,000 people and big hits and making that much money,” Borland said. “We can get ourselves into trouble trying to. Coming to terms with transitioning is one of the harder lessons I’ve had to learn the last couple of years, is that life is a little more methodical than in sports. The peaks aren’t as high and the valleys aren’t as low.“That’s an adjustment we have to make.”Borland, whose brothers Joe and John serve in the Army, sees similar retirement challenges for veterans, who like football players often have to deal with physical injuries and mental problems that are far less obvious as they go into society.“It would be ill-advised to compare war and a sport, but I don’t think the brain knows the difference,” Borland said. “With post-traumatic stress and traumatic brain injuries in blasts with veterans, we see a very similar and somewhat unique issue with repetitive brain injuries in football. There are very similar physical struggles, but also two populations that have a hard time transitioning out whether it is the military or football and reintegrating into society.”Borland has tried to bridge those two populations with his work with the After the Impact Fund , which facilitates custom treatment plans for veterans and athletes with traumatic brain injuries.He is raising money and awareness for the issue this week by taking part in “Pat’s Run” on Saturday in Tempe, Arizona, alongside his brothers Joe and John. The run is named after Pat Tillman [url=http://www.dolphinscheapstore.com/minkah-fitzpatrick-jersey-cheap]Minkah Fitzpatrick Dolphins Jersey[/url] , who gave up his own promising NFL career to join the Army in 2002 in the wake of the 9/11 attacks and died while serving in Afghanistan in 2004.“A lot of what you do as a teammate is you sacrifice for others and support others,” John Borland said. “There are people we’ve all been teammates with, for us it’s soldiers. For Chris, it’s ex-football players. You don’t just forget your teammates as soon as the game is over. They’re still your teammates. There are people who still need support, who worked hard and are with you. These are guys you shared blood with.”John Borland is a major in the U.S. Army, an instructor at West Point and also served in Iraq. Joe Borland is a captain in the US Army JAG Corps who has served in Iraq and Afghanistan, returning just last month from his latest tour.They see plenty in common with what their friends in the military deal with after leaving the service and what ex-athletes go through as well.“The similarities and the overlap is they both are young when they start off and young when they’re done as well for the most part,” Joe Borland said. “They potentially would have suffered similar injuries but in a different way. The impacts in the NFL and the impacts we might have with an explosion or trauma in the military can be similar.”Those brain injuries are why the 27-year-old Borland retired from football three years ago in a decision that shocked many outsiders, but was one his brothers knew came from careful consideration.Borland was a third-round pick in the 2014 NFL draft by San Francisco after a stellar college career at Wisconsin, where he was Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year and a second-team All-American in 2013.Borland led the 49ers in tackles as a rookie and was named to the all-rookie team and was a Pro Bowl alternate before stepping away for a post-playing career that includes a company he started, T Mindful, to help bring meditation into sports.“About 10 percent of the time, I miss 3 to 5 percent of the game,” Borland said. “I look back and I’m happy that I played. I’m not wistful. You miss big games. I miss the locker room camaraderie. Sometimes I miss the lifestyle. It’s great to get around old players because in a society where people like to dance around topics, it’s good to be around like-minded people who cut the BS and are able to rib one another. I enjoyed that. But I don’t long for it or reminisce daily. A piece of my heart will always be in football, but my mind ended it.”Borland, who started playing tackle football in ninth grade [url=http://www.newyorkjetsteamonline.com/joe-namath-jersey]Cheap Joe Namath Jersey[/url] , finds it preposterous that children are still playing the sport with fewer rules protecting them than the adults in the pros.Even the rules in the NFL like limits on contact in practice and a recent rule change to outlaw leading with the helmet are only small steps.“Those are all incremental improvements,” Borland said. “A lot of it is PR. When they do those things, they’re able to say the game is safer than ever. Safer than ever is a euphemism for dangerous and football is inherently dangerous. The way it’s played, if it’s going to retain what it is as a game, it will always be dangerous. What’s not being done that could be are measures outside the lines like waiting until high school to play and having high schools and colleges adopt the same contact rules as the NFL.” Baltimore manager Buck Showalter receives regular calls from veteran, out-of-work scouts looking for jobs.
Many are longtime baseball men who once hit the road to major league cities ahead of their clubs to offer detailed insight of upcoming opponents. Now, advance scouting for many teams has turned to technology: video from every angle and situation, and analytics.
”Advance scouting by humans is history,” said Bay Area-based Mets scout Shooty Babitt, who also works as an analyst on Oakland Athletics broadcasts. ”Thank goodness I’m a scout who evaluates talent. Advance guys prepare strategy.”
Showalter’s Orioles don’t have an advance scout working in the ballpark. Same goes for World Series champion Houston, Minnesota, the Angels, Oakland and others.
”I’d like to know how many clubs have a human being advance anymore,” Showalter said.
With the push of a button, a hitter can watch video of every 2-2 breaking pitch Giants ace Madison Bumgarner has tossed, or flame-throwing Yankees closer Aroldis Chapman’s tendencies with a man on base, or any other specific scenario that requires a closer look. Instead of hoping a scout saw that type of situation in the pitcher’s recent outings [url=http://www.dallascowboysteamonline.com/dan-bailey-jersey]Dan Bailey Jersey Womens[/url] , there it is on a screen – sometimes even up to the minute as teams do their own version of advance scouting during a game to gauge what a hitter might see in an upcoming at-bat.
Clubs like the A’s stopped using an advance scout on the road years ago as technology improved and so much data became readily available. While the cost savings might not be as significant as it would seem, many teams have used that money instead to invest in infrastructure, databases and other state-of-the-art systems to evaluate talent through strategic study.
Yet even with the trend toward video analysis, it doesn’t always provide a complete view of a player but rather glimpses of what he does.
”When I’m looking at a pitcher, I’m just looking at clips and pitches. I don’t see his body language in between, I don’t see if he wants to work really fast, we need to slow this guy down,” Marlins manager Don Mattingly said. ”There’s some little, subtle things that you may not see. … But we can get a lot done on video.”
San Diego’s advance scouting department works from video, staying in-house.
”We have advance scouts, not in the traditional sense,” Padres manager Andy Green said. ”A lot (of teams) have migrated away from that traditional role. There’s so much video I can watch every single throw that every outfielder makes. There’s a camera angle on absolutely everything at this point in time. … You can see every single pitch from multiple camera angles, so you get a feel for a lot now that you didn’t used to be able to get a feel for. There was a point in time where that advance scout was sitting on signs trying to decipher what the signs were for other teams. That doesn’t happen as much anymore. You’re not finding them out that way.”
Still, certain organizations have stuck to traditional methods.
The Marlins use a combination, with president of baseball operations Michael Hill noting Miami has ”a live advance scout to monitor things that the analytics don’t capture.”
Colorado manager Bud Black firmly believes in advance scouts and what they do to prepare a club – one working at San Francisco’s AT&T Park before the Rockies‘ recent series.
”In this ballpark, in the stadium, in a seat [url=http://www.brownscheapshop.com/cheap-authentic-austin-corbett-jersey]Cheap Austin Corbett Jersey[/url] , and maybe walking around different viewpoints, too,” Black said. ”I love the input from advance scouts.”
Black appreciates the human element these scouts offer – ”There’s some things that the television camera doesn’t pick up, right? And our guys keep an eye on that” – and recommended keeping advance scouts when he got the Colorado job before the 2017 season.
Some players sense a difference.
Giants right fielder Andrew McCutchen indicated they might feel devalued because there’s less information on a player without those on-site scouts.
”It’s all about what a computer can spit out and let you know. It makes the game a little more efficient and easier for people,” McCutchen said. ”But in the midst of that, guys are losing an opportunity to be able to showcase what they’re capable of doing. It’s just the way it’s evolving in this game. It’s just baseball and, honestly, life in general. Technology is just what’s new, it’s what’s going on that matters right now.”
The NBA is still heavily reliant on the advance scout who hops from city to city at a frenetic pace, and it’s something champion Warriors coach Steve Kerr still counts on as he and his staff must immediately get ready after a game for another opponent as soon as the very next night – or on short notice, like this year leading into the first round of the playoffs when there were several potential opponents as the regular season concluded.
Many baseball managers see both sides of the argument over having a scout in the stadium seats versus studying from afar.
”I think it’s how advance scouting has changed,” Astros manager A.J. Hinch said. ”Some are still in the stands, truly the traditional advance scouting where they’re in the stands following teams you’re about to play. Some are more behind the scenes, video and analysis. We’re on the latter side of that, so we don’t have a body in the stadium as much as we have an advance scouting department th.
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