Quattlebaum grew up a dedicated Red Sox fan while playing in the Andover youth and Pony leagues before heading to Phillips Academy, where his parents, Ed and Ruth, both taught. He starred for the Big Blue, hitting .491 with 18 RBIs as a junior and .444 as a senior, while going 8-3 as a pitcher over those two seasons.
“Gus was a very good player,” Iarrobino said. “He joked to the kids that he wasn’t very good, but he could hit and was an excellent third baseman for the Legion team. He always wanted to take extra batting practice or fielding drills, he always competed.”
He was then recruited to play at Division 1 Davidson College in North Carolina, where he played primarily outfield and hit 35 career homers, the second best in school history. He briefly flirted with a professional baseball career, playing in the Orioles’ instructional league after graduating in 1997, but then found his next pursuit.
Redirecting his passion
Still hoping to make it as a player, Quattlebaum met with then-Montreal Expos GM Jim Beattie in 1998. Quattlebaum’s family knew Beattie, whose wife, Martha, had taught at Phillips.
Beattie introduced Quattlebaum to Montreal’s farm system director Dave Littlefield, who offered him an internship in the Expos’ player development office in Jupiter, Fla.
The internship included airport runs and picking up pizzas.
“But I got to sit in on the draft,” he said. “That kind of initially turned me on to scouting. ... From there, they sent me to a scout school that Major League Baseball runs.”
After his time with the Expos, he was hired as a scout for the Yankees, winning his first World Series ring in 1999, before moving on to the Orioles.
“As a scout, I averaged 140 nights a year in a hotel,” he said. “And those were the days before cellphones, so I would need to run around and find a pay phone. There were a lot of Marriotts and fast-food dining. Plus, when you are 6-foot-3 in the middle seat on a Southwest (Airlines) flight, it is pretty rough. But I love baseball.”