12:40 PM Eastern
The Blue Jays’ new General Manager made his first bunch of moves this morning, shuffling about the scouting and player development staff.
The biggest move is the firing of Dick Scott, J.P. Ricciardi’s Director of Player Development. A member of the 1989 World Series champion Oakland A’s (OK, he was 0-for-2 in three games, but he has a ring), Scott came to the Blue Jays from the Diamondbacks’ organizations where he’d been seen as a terrific managerial prospect before moving to pro scouting. Scott was one of J.P.’s first hires and oversaw player development throughout Ricciardi’s tenure.
I didn’t talk to Scott a lot, he was generally around during Spring Training, at draft time and in September, but he was always willing to talk and always gave a good overview of what was going on in the minor-league system.
He’s replaced by a combination of (Torontonian) Charlie Wilson, who has been running the Jays’ minor-league operations for six years and Doug Davis (not the pitcher), who managed the Jays’ AA New Hampshire Fisher Cats in 2006 and spent this past season as a roving catching instructor.
Throughout J.P.’s tenure, the Blue Jays did a fantastic job in developing pitchers, but failed miserably in their attempts to develop a major-league calibre catcher and shortstop.
The other big change took place in amateur scouting, where Hamiltonian Andrew Tinnish takes over as the scouting director from Jon Lalonde, who moves to pro scouting. Tinnish has moved through the scouting department since joining the team back in 2001, and had been Lalonde’s top assistant the last three seasons. Jack Armstrong will like him, since he used to pitch for Niagara College.
Anthopoulos is really, really high on Tinnish, and though it sounds as though this move is a demotion for Lalonde, it really seems to be more of a lateral move. The Jays will be placing a much larger emphasis on pro scouting, which would indicate that in the future they’re planning to be far more active in the trade and free agent markets. Lalonde will be a big part of that, though Perry Minasian (who came to the Jays last year from the Rangers – I’ve never met him) will head up that department.
Also, Rob Ducey and Mike Basso have been let go. Ducey had been handling all the scouting in the Pacific Rim, but turned up Scott Richmond before he went east. Basso managed for the Jays in Dunedin (FSL Manager of the Year), New Hampshire (won an Eastern League Championship), Syracuse and Las Vegas.
Rational, reasonable comments are always welcome!