Inside St. Louis Cardinals Manager Oliver Marmol and Amber Marmol’s New Baseball Training App

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In the middle of a hectic first season as coach of the St. Louis Cardinals, Oliver Marmol has not lost sight of his biggest hobby: business. He and his wife Amber are the founders of VS, a sports education app that uses professional athletes like Albert Pujols, Fernando Tatis Jr. and Jessica Mendoza to help train and offer advice to anyone who subscribes.


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With high-level training exercises and ultra-specific answers to any question a user may have, VS is unique in the accessibility it offers to the life of a professional athlete. “If there’s one word I want you to get me out of this it’s‘ access, ’” the Cardinals ’pattern shared. For him, the access he had to great minds in baseball during his early days as a player and coach led him to one of the major tasks of baseball management, and it’s something that he and Amber they strive to offer anyone with similar ambitions. The co-founders spoke with Entrepreneur a Zoom on growing your startup while managing their super busy lives, why treating talent and clientele kindly is very important and how a trip to Guatemala fueled their desire to return.

What differentiates VS from other training platforms?

Oliver Marmol: Everything else right now is just content you’re consuming. You’re sitting there, listening to an hour-long course, taking your notes and then you’re done. What our platform allows you to do is at any time during this course, you can stop training and ask questions to the talent with the technology we are using called conversational AI. Our talent is able to answer up to 500 questions. Anyone could stop the program and ask me, “Can you tell me more about the minor league doubt?” or “What have the best coaches you’ve had done right?” They will also get to the bottom of the mindset and emotional components of success.

Amber Marble: One of the things we’ve always seen with Ollie and the players he’s dealt with is that there are a lot of guys who do it not only because of their physical ability, but also because of their mindset and their willingness to persevere. For those who pursue their dreams, it is your mindset that will really get you this far and what will keep you in the good and bad times.

What inspired you to launch this platform?

ABOUT: We took a trip to Guatemala years ago and spent seven days in an orphanage. We saw one of the worst poverty we have ever seen in our lives, and back in Miami, Amber looked at me and said, “How can we build something that allows us to return to this community and the people who need it.? ” We had zero money at the time, and I mean zero, but Amber said, “Why don’t we start a business where you teach lessons?” Then we decided to donate 50 percent of everything that came at the end of the year.

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I started teaching and we sent a check at the end of the course. Those kids were eating one meal every three days, and at the end of what we sent, they were eating three meals a day for about six or seven months. Amber looked at me after that and said, “Okay, how do we do this a million times?”

With the people we know, let’s teach them, put a high-level production around them, monetize them, and still have a component of returning to neglected communities and giving them access. If I look back what gave me this opportunity to be the Cardinals coach is all the access I had. When we sit down and think, well, a lot of kids like me don’t have that access, how can we offer it? This is the heartbeat of this platform.

How did you get the superstar athletes to share their talent with the show?

AM: When we started this company, we knew that culture would be very important to us. This fed not only how we interact as a team, but also how we treat our athletes. They are very successful, and we value that, but we also value them as people. We really try to do a great job just by knowing them as people and serving them that way. We built a great reputation among the first people we got, and from there it spread by word of mouth.

ABOUT: No doubt. Think of all the different announcements that Albert Pujols has made throughout his career. He came to the set and told us that he had never been treated like that where he didn’t feel like it was just talent moving from room to room. For female athletes, it can be easy to shorten them and do a lower level production, but one came into the building with us and said they treated her like a high-end male athlete. This is what we want to make sure we communicate: the way we treat our talent will continue to allow us to get more talent.

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Is there any advice I would give to entrepreneurs who want to start a tech company?

ABOUT: At first, you often get the feeling that any opportunity you have ahead of you is your last. I would advise being very slow when making these decisions. Don’t linger unnecessarily, but at the same time, take your time and find out if it’s the right talent? Is he the right team member? Is the association appropriate? Think about the long game and not just the short game of how this helps me right now.

AM: I would just add that you need to know your values. We have done so, but all within the values ​​of our basic principles and beliefs. For us, working with honest, high-quality, high-character people is far more important than this quick fix and instant success. Take the time to make sure everything aligns with the culture you’ve always had in mind that you want to build.

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