Marlins Scout Keeps Eye on his Alma Mater
Jan. 31, 2013
CHICAGO - From the moment Carmen Carcone was offered a baseball scholarship to the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) he knew he wanted to play for the Flames.
"To be able to play in a big city and a good conference was attractive," said Carcone. "I went down, took a visit, liked the city, did some research and saw a lot of good things about the university itself and it was just a good fit."
Currently, Carcone holds a scouting position with the Florida Marlins and will be keeping a close eye on his Chicago alma mater, which happens to be a part of his newly assigned scouting region.
"I work with tremendous people in the Marlins organization so, it's a good situation and I'm lucky to be in it," said Carcone. "I'll actually have UIC in my region and be able to get back there and get to scout that area."
During his four years at UIC, his most memorable moment came in 1993 during his sophomore year. While playing second base in the Mid-Continent Conference Championship game, Carcone hit a line-drive double to centerfield which drove in the game-winning run, assisting his team to a championship title. He finished off his senior season with a respectable .290 batting average, and started in all 46 scheduled games.
Since graduating from UIC in 1995 with a Kinesiology degree, Carcone found himself in several different coaching and managing positions. He began his coaching career at Cortland State directly after graduation and soon became the assistant coach at Cornell University. Carcone then spent two summers managing the Newport Gulls in the New England Collegiate Baseball League where he formed a championship-winning team in 2002.
The following season, Carcone was named manager of the Dowling College baseball program where he averaged over 30 wins per season, appeared in five consecutive New York Collegiate Athletic Conference (NYCAC) championship games and led the program to their first NCAA DII regional championship. During his five years as manager for the Golden Lions, Carcone was a two-time NYCAC Coach of the Year.
"I'm just blessed to be able to be involved in the game of baseball as a job, it's something I really enjoy doing on a daily basis," said Carcone. "I'm fortunate enough to be able to get up every day and do something that I enjoy doing."
After Dowling, he was named manager of the Orleans Cardinals of the Cape Cod League and after just one year on the job, he was selected as Cape Cod League Coach of the Year. His team appeared in back-to-back Cape Cod finals, and took home the championship in 2003. Through impeccable coaching and recruitment skills, 20 of his 24 players were selected in the 2004 Major League Baseball Draft, with seven going in the first five rounds. Overall, he has coached more than 60 players who have been drafted, including three in the first round.
Throughout his several coaching positions, Carcone has learned one undeniable fact.
"You could be a great coach but if you don't have good players and talent, it's going to be hard to accomplish anything," said Carcone.
For the past several years Carcone has tried something other than coaching baseball, but rather scouting. He held the position as the scout for the Southeastern region of the United States for the Marlins, where after being named 2012 Scout of the Year, was recently promoted to Scout Supervisor of the Northeastern United States.
"One thing I learned with scouting is, with so many different players, programs, and how the coaches run their programs, you realize there's not one way to do it (coach) everyone is different and every kid responds differently to different things. That's a big thing I see from this side (scouting)," said Carcone.
Something that Carcone certainly realizes now is the nine regular season titles the Flames have won in the last 11 years with eight of those coming consecutively.
"They've done that a lot recently(win conference titles), for Mike Dee, Sean McDermott, and their players that's become a regular thing, playing to have the best record in the conference and those guys have done a tremendous job over there," said Carcone.
Time and geographical location has not prevented Carcone from thinking about his time with the Flames. As he looks to the future of scouting and cheering on his former team he will always remember the three ideals that have assisted the organizations success, being selfless, relentless, and striving for excellence.