Friday, March 22, 2013

Mantle World Owner Interview - silentpadna

In our latest "Meet Your Fellow Owner" interview of season 28, we chat with silentpadna, the new owner of the Seattle People's Republic franchise.  The Evil Panda takes over a franchise that has gone through a lengthy rebuild but has not been able to get over the hump to the promised land of a World Series title.  Padna is actually a returning owner, having won three Mantle World Series titles in a previous 13 season stint with the Norfolk/Pittsburgh (currently Pawtucket) franchise.  Lets find out a little bit about him.

Tec: Tell us a little about yourself.

Silentpadna: I just turned 50, but have a young family which keeps me young and wears me out at the same time. I work in a technical profession because I can and it's what I’ve done. I'd rather be in business and finance, but I haven’t found that door to open yet. I'm from the Atlanta area now, but grew up in Seattle. That’s where my sports allegiances are. When I heard that Forbes report about a year or two ago that Atlanta was the "Second most miserable sports town in the US", as measured by local teams' sports success, I was happy. Why? Because I had just moved away from the most miserable….I'm still tied to my Seattle teams anyway.

Tec: Outside of Hardball Dynasty, what are some of your other interests and hobbies?

Silentpadna: Hardball Dynasty takes all of my time of course. Nah, actually I like to follow my teams, I like to golf, bowl, play a little hoops when my ankle lets me. I like the Xbox as an outlet – the Madden, NCAA and sports games. I would not classify myself a "gamer" though in any sense. I enjoy political and philosophical discourse and sometimes the debate parts of that. I enjoy coaching my kids in sports when time allows, teaching them how to hack on the guitar (which is about my ability level – I hack by ear…).

Tec: Did you play any sports growing up?

Silentpadna: I was a decent basketball player and played a little bit of that. I’m not an athlete per se – no natural speed or jumping ability. But I did have good hand-eye coordination and was able to develop skills through technique, practice, and game study. By the time I got later into high school, I was too busy with outside work, so even though I was good enough to make the team, I didn’t actually play varsity sports. I got better at that while in the Navy and played quite a bit in my 20s. I also was an avid bowler as a teenager (got way way way better later in life).

Tec: Who are your favorite all-time players?

Silentpadna: I like high character guys who get every last drop out of their abilities, but aren't "above everyone else". Locally, Steve Largent and Edgar Martinez qualify. The guys on my list are guys that I remember watching, not just guys my dad (a sports beat writer) liked before I even followed sports. My favorite guys to watch in terms of sheer athletic ability were Barry Sanders, Michael Jordan, Barry Bonds (even before the 'roids), Peyton Manning. Felix Hernandez is another high character guy with positively filthy stuff. I was following him when he was a 17 year old in rookie ball. You knew he was special, even then.

Tec: What has been your favorite real-life sports experience or memory?

Silentpadna: I mentioned earlier that I was an avid bowler who got much better later in life. I actually toured with the PBA for one summer (1995). Never made the TV show. Although I was marginal on a national level, I was good enough to make money in regional events quite regularly and beating some of my "heroes" in match play in some of the tournaments was probably the best thing. My first 300 game (of many) back in 1984 also has to rank right up there. At that time, they were not nearly as common as they are today.

Tec: What's been your most memorable non-sports experience in your life?

Silentpadna: Being a family man, my wedding and the births of our three kids all rank right at the top.

Tec: If you were an HBD player, what position would you play and what would your ratings be?

Silentpadna: I'm kinda built like a catcher these days, so I'd have to pick that. I'd be a catcher with an accurate, but not super strong arm, very high PC. I'd have moderate hitting ability as a switch hitter and gap power.

Thank you silentpadna for participating in our latest Mantle World Owner interview, and good luck to you this season.

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