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Josh Collmenter: The smartest guy in the (locker) room?

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It may be the opening day of full-squad workouts today at Salt River Fields, but we'll get to that later. First, class in session, and Professor Collmenter is holding forth!

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Josh Collmenter has always had a reputation as a bit of an intellectual character. He was the salutatorian of his high school class in Homer. Michigan, and is the guy most likely to be found in the clubhouse reading. And not Tom Clancy either: more likely something such as Essentials of Philsophy: The Basic Concepts of the World's Greatest Thinkers. There was also his "Win a date with Josh Collmenter" contest during the team's trip to Australia, and his trip to Phoenic Comic Con, dressed as a Jedi to promote his bobblehead giveaway on Star Wars Night. So, of all the people about whom the following might be written, Josh is probably the least surprising.

According to Collmenter, ""We were sitting around talking about some history stuff and (I was) like, ‘I’m just going to start teaching you guys things,'. We just pick random topics and if anyone has a suggestion we’ll talk about that. It’s not always going to be as in-depth as this, but it sort of expounded upon what we did the first day. I think tomorrow’s lesson will be a little more, not so practical, but a little more lighthearted I think." But this comment might stir a few clubhouse emotions! "From what I’ve gathered, pitchers are the more intelligent species anyway, so it’s a lot easier to talk to them than it would be some of the position players."

There is perhaps some history for that. Former Diamondback reliever Craig Breslow, who pitched alongside Josh in the 2011 bullpen, has repeatedly been called "the smartest man in baseball," in part due to his degree from Yale in molecular biophysics and biochemistry; he had to chose between medical school and the game. Former Arizona pitching prospect Ross Ohlendort is another acknowledged top brain: he graduated from Princeton in Operations Research and Financial Engineering, writing his senior thesis on the financial returns of baseball's draft. So maybe Collmenter - who use to do substitute teaching while in the minors - is actually among his intellectual peers?

On the other hand, Paul Goldschmidt majored in finance at Texas State University, where it's reported he "finished near the top of his introduction to finance class and was the best student in a class that analyzed real-world financial data". One of his teachers there, Glenn Tanner, said of Paul, "I’ve been teaching for 15 or 20 years and I don’t think I’ve ever seen anybody with that kind of drive and work ethic," and Goldschmidt had an internship at Morgan Stanley lined up while he was playing in Double-A Mobile, in case baseball didn't work out. I imagine the company are not exactly hanging around waiting for a call on that!

majored in Operations Research and Financial Engineering at Princeton - See more at: http://www.totalprosports.com/2011/09/16/9-smartest-players-in-major-league-baseball/#sthash.ce2F8mEy.dpuf