Theo Epstein has been making significant changes in the Cubs front office and field management, from the departure of Joe Maddon to Jason McLeod being “kicked upstairs” to a senior VP of player personnel position.
The move of McLeod seems to be a tacit admission by Theo that the team’s amateur scouting and drafting hasn’t been what he’d hoped for. The “waves and waves” of talent have not materialized.
This hire will hopefully help fix that issue:
Breaking news - Cubs will name Dan Kantrovitz their new VP of scouting later today . Kantrovitz was asst GM of Oakland last vice years 2012-14 director of scouting for Cards . ( Flaherty - Kelly - Weaver )— Bruce Levine (@MLBBruceLevine) November 13, 2019
As noted by Bruce Levine, Dan Kantrovitz has worked as an assistant general manager for the Athletics under Billy Beane from 2015 through this season. Previous to that, he was director of amateur scouting for the Cardinals, and as Levine also noted, he was responsible for drafting Jack Flaherty, Luke Weaver and Carson Kelly. The latter two were traded to the Diamondbacks for Paul Goldschmidt, so those drafts produced good value for the Cardinals.
There’s a bit more on Kantrovitz in this article by Jordan Bastian at cubs.com:
He previously worked as the director of scouting for the Cardinals from 2012-14, and he held an analytical role for Oakland’s international and baseball operations departments from ‘09-11.
According to Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, St. Louis asked Kantrovitz earlier this offseason about potentially bringing him back into the fold as an advisor or special assistant. Kantrovitz was also reportedly a finalist for the Phillies’ general manager vacancy in 2015.
Kantrovitz -- who has a bachelor’s degree in organizational behavior and management from Brown University (2001) and a master’s degree in statistics from Harvard (‘09) -- will join a revamped front office with the Cubs.
And as Brett Taylor points out:
Fun(?) fact: Kantrovitz was the Cardinals' scouting director between Jeff Luhnow and Chris Correa, and appears to be the only one of the trio who has avoided scandal.— Bleacher Nation (@BleacherNation) November 13, 2019
That’s good, right?
It should also be noted that Kantrovitz is being given a VP title, which generally gives a person in the Cubs organization more clout than someone with the title of “director.”
Welcome, Dan Kantrovitz, to the Cubs. I think you’ll like it here. Please start bringing us those “waves and waves.” We’ve been waiting a while.