Blue Jays Scouting Department, Alex Anthopoulos’ Legacy


The Blue Jays created quite a stir when they revamped their scouting department in 2009, under AA’s guidance. We look at how it has changed since then.

It was in 2010 that we saw Alex Anthopoulos revamp the scouting department, increasing its size substantially. Imagine walking into your supervisor’s office and telling him you want to close to double your staff. That’s exactly what Anthopoulos did when he increased the scouting department from 28 to 54.

His vision included scouts getting the chance to see more at bats and/or innings pitched, to have better pay and quality of life for his scouts, and to allow for more responsibility to be held at the regional cross-checker level. His vision was accepted, they made the investment, and most will agree they reaped the rewards of that investment.

Toronto Blue Jays
Toronto Blue Jays /

Toronto Blue Jays

The changes were made, he increased the number of area scouts to 25 and split them into groups of 5, each group reporting to one regional cross-checker. Once the majority of the changes were made, I noted what the front office scouting department looked like and who was in charge of each area. The link is available here.

With that in mind, and with the departure of Anthopoulos, I thought it would be interesting to see what positions remain, which were altered, and how many people made it through the entire process unscathed. It will also allow us to reset who’s where as the Mark Shapiro era begins and to see what kind of changes he puts in place during his tenure.

Each group of positions will be separate, with the current person listed beside the position, and the 2010 incumbent listed in brackets. After that will be pointed out whether or not the position is “New to Position” or “Same Person, Same Position”, keeping in mind that new is relative in this case and only means hired since that point in 2010. We will finally point out how many positions were cut – or added – in each category and total everything up at the end.

One note is that Andrew Tinnish remains with the organization as he was promoted to Assistant GM after acting as the Director of Amateur Scouting in 2010.

Here we go, beginning with the Directors.


  1. Professional Scouting Director: Perry Minasian
  2. Amateur Scouting Director: Brian Parker (Promoted. Was Pro Scout in 2010)
    • Scouted for Expos, Rockies, and Nationals. Signed Marco Estrada while with Nationals
  3. Dominican Republic Director: Jose Rosario
    • Used to be named “Latin American Ops” and was filled by Marco Paddy in 2010
  4. Venezuela Director: Luis Marquez
    • Used to be named “Latin American Ops” and was filled by Marco Paddy in 2010
  5. Amateur Scouting Special Assistant: Chuck LaMar (was Ryan Mittleman)
    • LaMar was TB’s GM from ’95-’05 and is a huge add to the Jays scouting staff
  6. Professional Scouting Coordinator: David Haynes (was Harry Einbinder)


  1. Special Assignment Scout: Russ Bove (New Position, New Hire)
    • Worked for MLB Scouting Bureau, spent 10 years with Brewers and 1 with Expos. Signed Ian Desmond his sole year as Mets Scouting Director
  2. Major League Scout / Pacific Rim Operations: Dan Evans (New Position, New Hire)
    • Dodgers GM ’01 to ’05. Drafted Matt Kemp and current Jays C Russell Martin
  3. Major League Scout: Jim Beattie (hired Feb 2010)
    • Expos GM 1995 to 2001, Orioles GM 2003-2005
  4. Major League Scout: Sal Butera (same position, same person)
    • Has been in this role since 2008
  5. Major League Scout: Ed Lynch (Promoted from Professional Crosschecker)
    • Was GM of the Cubs (1994-2000), also worked with the Padres
  6. Major League Scout: Jim Skaalen (New position, New hire)


  1. Mel Didier (New position, Senior Advisor)
    • Scouted for the Mariners, Dodgers, Tigers, Orioles, and Braves. Was Scouting Director for the Expos, Senior Advisor with Rangers, and spent time with Diamondbacks organization as Special Assistant to the GM and Director of Player Development
  2. Kevin Briand (Same position, Same person)
  3. Dean Decillis (Same position, New hire)
  4. Jon Lalonde (Same position, demoted)
    • Was Scouting Director under J.P. Ricciadi, replaced by Andrew Tinnish
  5.  Matt Anderson (Same position, New Hire)
    • Previously scouted for the Braves, Expos, and Marlins
  6. Jon Bunnell (Same position, New Hire)
    • Previously scouted for the Angels, Astros, and Mets. Credited for signing Shane Opitz.
  7. Steve Connelly (Same position, Same person)
  8. Kimball Crossley (Same position, Same person)
  9. Kevin Fox (Same position, New Hire)
  10. Bryan Lambe (Same position, New Hire)
  11. Ted Lekas (Same position, New Hire)
  12. Nick Manno (Same position, New Hire)
    • Scouted for Expos and Nationals (’03-’06) and worked for MLB. Signed Jon Berti. Promoted from Area scout role.
  13. Brad Matthews (Same position, New Hire)
    • Seems tied to Chuck LaMar as he also spent time in TB during his time there. Signed David Price (in TB) and Taylor Guerreri to name a few
  14. David May jr (Same position, New Hire)
    • Responsible for Devon Travis signing

There were 15 Professional Scouts in 2010, so there is one less of them today. Let go from that point were: Mike Mangan, Rick Down, Bob Hamelin, John Lombardo, Wayne Morgan, Marteese Robinson, Gary Rajsich, John Brickley, Tom Clark, Jim D’Aloia, and Steve Springer.

More from Jays Journal


  1. Blake Davis (was Billy Gasparino)
  2. Mike Mangan (was Tommy Tanous)


  1. Blake Crosby (was Matt Briggs)
  2. C.J. Ebarb (was Tom Burns, Ebarb was promoted from Area Scout)
  3. Tim Rooney (was Dan Cholowsky)
  4. Paul Tinnell (was Bob Fontaine)
    • Worked with Pirates (up to Scouting Director and Director of Player Development), the Expos, Nationals, and Indians

There is one less Regional Crosschecker now than there was in 2010. The fifth position had been filled by Brandon Mozley.


  1. Mike Alberts, Leominster MA (new area covered, new hire)
  2. Doug Witt, Brooklyn N.Y. – Was a Pro Scout (was Michael Pece in Long Island, NY)
  3. Coulson Barbiche, Columbus OH (was Nick Manno in North Royalton OH)
  4. Jeff Johnson Indianapolis IN (new area covered, new hire)
  5. Wes Panik, Clive IA (same position, same person)
  6. Dallas Black, Conway AR (new area covered, new hire)
  7. Chris Kline, Tarboro NC – Worked for BA (was John Hendricks in Mocksville NC)
  8. Mike Tidick, Statesboro, GA (was Eric McQueen in Acworth GA)
  9. Don Norris, Gainesville FL (was Joel Grampietro in Tampa FL)
  10. Matt O’Brien, Clermont, FL (was Carlos Rodriguez in Miami FL)
  11. Matt Bishoff, Tampa FL (new area covered, new hire)
  12. Brian Johnston, Baton Rouge LA (was Rob St-Julien in Lafayette LA)
  13. Pete Holmes, Phenix AZ (was Mark Flatten in Phoenix AZ)
  14. Joey Aversa, Fountain Valley CA (was Chris Becerra in SF)
  15. Bud Smith, Lakewood CA (was Randy Kramer in Aptos CA)
  16. Randy Kramer, Aptos CA (was Dan Cox in Santa Ana CA)
  17. Jim Lentine San Clemente CA (was Blake Crosby in Santa Maria CA)
  18. Ryan Fox, Yakima WA (same position, same person)
  19. Darold Brown Elk Grove CA (was Tim Rooney in Los Angeles CA)
    • Scouted for the Diamondbacks (’07-’10) before joining the Jays
  20. Gerald Turner, Bedford TX (was Steve Miller in Plano Texas)
    • Signed Matt Lipka while with the Braves
  21. Nate Murrie, Bowling Green KY (new area covered, new hire)
    • Signed Daniel Norris, Clint Hollon, Mark Biggs, and Lane Thomas. Pretty great group of signings.

More from Toronto Blue Jays News

As previously mentioned, the Area Scouts in 2010 grew to 25 and was split into 5 groups of 5 (there were 24 area scouts posted when I completed the 2010 article). It seems that much of that reduction was transferred over to Latin American scouting, which I’ll cover soon.

In terms of covered, there’s a bigger focus on the North Eastern U.S. with an added scout in NY and in Maine, and there’s a new focus on the Central U.S. with area scouts added in Arkansas, Indianapolis and Kentucky. The Blue Jays also added another area scout in Florida.

The areas no longer covered as closely include Puerto Rico, Oklahoma, Illinois, and Kansas.

One thing’s for certain, there has been a veritable turnover of area scouts within the Jays department as only 2 area scouts survived the Alex Anthopoulos era unscathed, whether it was leaving on their own accord for other opportunities or being replaced for other reasons.


  1. Scout Canada 1: Don Cowan, Delta B.C. (Same position, Same person)
  2. Scout Canada 2: Jamie Lehman, Syracuse N.Y. (Same position, Same person)
    • Signed Shane Dawson and Tom Robson

There are 2 fewer scouting positions in Canada than there were in 2010. The 2 cut positions were Ambassador positions.

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    1. Dominican Republic Scout 1: Jairo Castillo, San Pedro (was Michel Bernard)
    2. Dominican Republic Scout 2: Alexis de la Cruz, Santo Domingo (was Lorenzo Perez)
    3. Dominican Republic Scout 3: Luciano del Rosario, Bani (was Hilario Soriano)
    4. Dominican Republic Scout 4: Lorenzo Perez, Manoguayabo (New position, New hire)
    5. Dominican Republic Scout 5: Marino Tejada, Santo Domingo (New position, New hire)
    6. Venezuela Scout 1: Jose Contreras, Oriente (was Robinson Garces)
    7. Venezuela Scout 2: Juan Garcia, Oriente (was Pablo Leaf)
    8. Venezuela Scout 3: Francisco Plasencia, Turmero (was Rafael Moncada)
    9. Nicaragua Scout: Daniel Sotelo, Managua (New position, New hire)
    10. Panama Scout: Alex Zapata, Panama city (New position, New hire)
    11. Columbia Scout: Enrique Falcon, Cartagena (was Erick Medina)
    12. Mexico Scout: Henry Sandoval, Culiacan (New position, New hire)
      • Previously scouted for the NYM
    13. Germany Scout (DE): Lionel Chattelle, Wiesbaden (New position, New hire)
      • Scouted for the Mets and signed 5 players from Germany

    The International Scouting department grew from 8 scouts to 13. Gone is the coverage of Australia (was Greg Wade), and there are now 2 more scouts in the Dominican Republic (3 if you include Dominican Republic Director Jose Rosario) which signifies a huge increase for such a small area of coverage. There are approximately 128 players that originate from the Dominican Republic, so you can definitely understand the investment they made in the region.

    The additions of scouts in Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, and the Germany makes perfect sense as these areas were not focused on enough in the past. I had advocated placing a scout in Mexico in 2010 as I noted that in 2009, 22 players had come from that region. The Jays currently have Marco Estrada and Roberto Osuna on their team from Mexico, the latter of which was scouted by the Anthopoulos regime.

    More from Toronto Blue Jays News


    When looking at the transition made under the guidance of Alex Anthopoulos, it seems like much of the focus shifted Latin America and that they added positions that allowed for more decisions to be made within the region before Crosscheckers were included.

    The strategic addition of Dominican and Venezuelan Directors is particularly interesting as it allows for them to vet much of the information they get from their area scouts before information is forwarded. Having a permanent presence in Europe also allows for a stronger coverage of that area which was lacking before.

    The department definitely got a little more top-heavy overall, but with 66 personnel listed above, you know the Jays are still extremely well-staffed when it comes to scouting.

    In comparison to what other clubs have listed for their scouting departments, you can still see the greater investment the Jays make on that front. Here’s what the other A.L. Teams have listed within their front office sites:

    • Boston Red Sox: 12 people in their Front Office scouting department
    • Tampa Bay Rays: it’s hard to read through their Front Office, but I considered approximately 18 people involved in their scouting efforts
    • New York Yankees: they do not list their scouting department in their Front Office page
    • Baltimore Orioles: as with the Yankees, they also don’t provide much information into their Front Office scouting roles
    • Cleveland Indians: since Mark Shapiro came over from the Indians, I thought we should take a look. They have 12 scouting department related posts included on their Front Office site. It’s fair to say the Jays have them beat by a fair margin even if they don’t list their entire department.

    So I ask you all this question, why do the Toronto Blue Jays list every single one of their directors, checkers, and scouts within their front office page. Why is the hierarchy so clearly delineated and presented for all of MLB to admire?

    Next: Blue Jays: Rule 5 Draft and 5 Possible Targets

    I can’t tell you an answer that will be 100% correct. But in my humble opinion, it’s an indication of the respect the Blue Jays wanted to show to their scouting department. They wanted every single one of those people to know they were an important and cherished part of the team, and that they were part of a huge team that was built to find as many gems as possible. No other franchise invests as much into their scouting department as the Blue Jays do.

    What we’re all waiting to see now is how many high-ranking scouts remain behind now that Alex Anthopoulos has left the organization. We know that Ismael Cruz recently left for the Dodgers after leading the Jays Latin American operations, and that Amateur Cross-Checker Mike Mangan just left for the Pirates. We’ll monitor the changes and will let you all know if and when significant changes are made, so keep checking in to JJ.