Impassioned Diamondbacks skipper Kirk Gibson has redefined his players’ clubhouse culture. He’s transformed his troops’ mentality, work ethic and on the field approach to the game to a more hard-nosed yet disciplined style of baseball.
And, his impact has left an indelible impression.
“He means everything,” Diamondbacks’ Managing General Partner Ken Kendrick told Arizona Sports 620’s Burns and Gambo Friday. “He is a presence. He’s a definition of a leader in the sport. All the players look up to him and respect him.”
In 2011, Gibson was able to get his young players to buy into his philosophy and it paid dividends for the eventual NL West champions, and NL Manager of the Year.
“He’s totally committed to winning and he actually to me is a baseball intellectual and I know that’s sort of anti what maybe one would have seen him as, as a player but he’s embraced the game in terms of his thoughtfulness,” Kendrick said.
Gibson and Kendrick’s relationship is one of free-flowing communication and philosophical conversations. Kendrick believes Gibson’s persona is one that transcends his fiery reputation.
“His image from before when he played was a tough, gruff, take no prisoners kind of player and yet while I think he possesses all of those qualities, I think he possesses a lot more and we are the beneficiaries of it,” Kendrick stated.
There’s no doubt Gibson’s managerial style is one that continues to impress, evolve and at times even ceases to surprise.