Indirect route connects Glynn's past, present

  • Article by: PHIL MILLER , Star Tribune
  • Updated: July 1, 2012 - 12:57 AM
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Gene Glynn kept an eye on matters from the dugout last week in Rochester, N.Y., where he works for his home-state franchise as manager.

Photo: Adrian Kraus, Adrian Kraus

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ROCHESTER, N.Y. - For a guy from Waseca, Gene Glynn sure took a roundabout route to come to work for the Twins.

The manager of the Twins' top minor league affiliate, the Class AAA Rochester Red Wings, interviewed three different times for a job with his home-state team, only to turn down the first two opportunities when other teams snapped him up with major league coaching offers first.

"I joked with Jim Rantz that he always waited till I got hired somewhere so he wouldn't have to," Glynn said of his new boss, the Twins minor league director.

And when Rantz called about the Rochester opening last November, Glynn, coaching winter ball in Venezuela, had to travel 3,000 miles round trip just to discuss the offer.

Glynn, 55, now is one of three Minnesotans to wear Red Wings uniforms this season, along with righthander Cole De Vries, an Eden Prairie native who won a fill-in start against the Royals on Saturday, and lefthanded reliever Caleb Thielbar, a Northfield native who pitched last summer for the St. Paul Saints.

"[Glynn] is a great teacher, really patient and knowledgeable. And he was a middle infielder, so that's a good fit," Rantz said of Glynn, who managed in rookie ball for five seasons, coached first or third base for the Rockies, Expos, Cubs and Giants in the major leagues for 15 seasons, and spent the past five seasons as a Tampa Bay Rays scout. "With that scouting background, he's got talent-evaluation skills. He's the full package."

He wanted to get back on the field, too. Scouting gave him an opportunity to watch his sons Geno and Chris play for Waseca High -- where he won Minnesota's first Mr. Basketball award in 1975, a year before Kevin McHale -- and in college, but "getting back in uniform, it was always kind of drawing me back," Glynn said. At Rochester, "Hopefully, you create good work habits and a good atmosphere to work in, never let [players] lose track of why they worked all winter and what their goals are."

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