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Winter Meetings Day 3: How to get a baseball job in 10 not-so-easy steps

They've come to seek their fortunes in the vast universe of baseball's Minor Leagues.

By tomorrow or Spring Training, that may mean a food and beverage internship in Hickory, a video production gig in Gwinnett or, for the more veteran, an assistant GM job in New Britain. But for now they're just 500 hopefuls, jockeying for totem pole position one hotel bar handshake at a time.

A resume dropoff at the PBEO office can become an informal coffee on the Delta walkway can become a sit-down in the Interview Room can become at least enough of a seasonal opportunity to hold them over until next year in Orlando, where they'll try to jump from coordinator to manager, or at least from the Rookie Leagues to Class A.

Gabe Rendon is trying to work his way "back to the big leagues" after interning in the Nashville Predators' ticket sales office last year. He hooked on with the Pirates’ Florida operation during last December's Job Fair in Dallas and spent the season in Bradenton selling ticket packages for Spring Training and Florida State League games. Like most of the other candidates in Nashville, the Southern Illinois graduate said his ultimate goal is stability -- a job that pays through the winter and an address that doesn't expire when the season ends.

Sam Dostaler, fidgeting in the armchair next to Rendon, might be the next Jon Miller or Gary Cohen. But on Wednesday morning, he was just a Springfield College senior waiting to interview for a Minor League broadcasting internship. "I don't know if they'll offer me the job face-to-face," he said. "I don't know if they'll offer it at all." Dostaler was surprised to find only a handful of broadcast positions among the 500-plus jobs posted this week, although he knew beforehand that many clubs base their hires more on audio clips and video reels than a traditional interview process. Much demand and little supply has made for a lot of boredom punctuated by occasional moments of stress.

Both Rendon and Dostaler looked exhausted as they sat, waiting yet again, midway through their last full day at the Gaylord Opryland. Although neither had secured a job offer yet, they agreed that the Winter Meetings were worth attending at least once just to get their names out there and meet some others doing the same. There’s a certain camaraderie among the applicants despite the competition – everyone is a small fish trying to get bigger, even if most are swimming in the same pond.

They just hope the applying and waiting and interviewing doesn't become an annual tradition.

-- Ian Kay / MLB.com