Cubs hire new scouting director Jaron Madison. Wilken staying as special assistant to Theo

Cubs hire new scouting director Jaron Madison. Wilken staying as special assistant to Theo

So this is interesting and unexpected...

The Cubs have hired San Diego Padres Scouting Director Jaron Madison, who has worked closely with both Jason McLeod and Jed Hoyer.  Madison has gotten a lot of credit for the Padres revamped farm system, which is now among the best in the game.

No word on what this means for current Cubs Director of Amateur Scouting Tim Wilken, who is said to have the respect of the Cubs new front office as well as owner Tom Ricketts.

UPDATE 6:00 PM:  Bruce Miles tweeted that he would ask about Wilken, then tweeted back a few minutes later saying, "He's staying. They like him."

Now, if that is the case, then I really, really like this move.  You can never have enough top quality talent evaluators and its seems that if the new CBA is going to limit how much you can spend on players, the Cubs are going to use some of that money so they can out-scout other teams.  The more eyes they have out there, the more likely they are to find hidden talent.

UPDATE #2 6:17 PM: David Kaplan tweets that Tim Wilken has been reassigned as a special assistant to Theo Epstein and that Madison will be the new Director of Amateur Scouting.  Looks like the Cubs are assembling an all-star front office.

Here's a great interview with Madison on Scout.com that will tell you a lot about his philosophy.

More as we get more information.

Filed under: Cubs

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  • hopefully Wilken gets a promotion or something. The more great scouting minds, the better, right??

  • In reply to cubbie steve:

    Haha! I just updated it and said something to that effect! Looks like Wilken is staying.

  • I know this is off subject, but why does rizzo gets treated different than castro? Rizzo makes mistakes and no one says anything but castro mistakes get blown up.

  • In reply to seankl:

    Good question. At least part of it has to be that Castro has been here for 3 years and the honeymoon is over but it really started last year with Valentine, who, not surprisingly is having his own problems. Karma, I guess.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    Thanks, you should write a piece on that subject.

  • In reply to seankl:

    Could be because Rizzo is relatively new to the big club and the newness hasn't worn off yet so he'll get a couple free passes. Could also be that Castro has shown lapses in concentration in the past and it's frustrating to see. Errors in the field are gonna happen so you kinda accept that. It's the mental mistakes that aren't acceptable IMO.

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    In reply to Larry H:

    Another big difference: Rizzo's error today was a physical error, he just missed the ball. Even if you're very kind and give Castro's fielding play the "physical error" tag, the baserunning play was just flat out stupid -- as felzz pointed out in his recap.

  • In reply to Mike Moody:

    But rizzo just hade a bad base running play a couple of games ago, and forgot how many outs in the dodger game.
    No one called for him to be benched and acted like it never happened.

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    In reply to seankl:

    That was a terrible play, agreed. It's one of the few real lack of concentration plays he's made. If that happens more often, I suspect he will get criticism for it. No one was calling for Starlin's head after his first mistake -- in fact he was defended: why Castro and not Ramirez or Soriano. It was when they added up over time that frustrations built.

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    The rough interpretation of this move would seem to be; "Okay, Tim, we're taking all of your day-to-day BS duties away. Your only job is read scouting reports -- fly out on our dime if you want to -- and tell me who to acquire."

  • In reply to Mike Moody:

    I think that would about sum it up. At this point, he deserves. BA did a survey and he was picked as the best talent evaluator in the game.

  • I wonder if this has to do with what the FO REALLY think of Starlin? I don't want to trade him BUT maybe that brings us the best arms this winter. Reason our build up of desent potential SS in th lower levels.

  • In reply to Cubs26:

    We really needed a arm when we traded brock, look how that turned out.

  • In reply to seankl:

    That turned out to be about 50 years ago, if you're still frozen from that may as well close up shop.

  • Really interesting and i think very positive move

    Was pretty shocked when i first read it as i didnt know what was happening with wilken but if he is staying that is really good

    As was said, can never have too many strong evaluators

    The interview with madison was also very interesting, like the move for sure

  • In reply to Andrew13:

    The Wilken move is being called a promotion. Maybe they wanted him to do one last draft and then move him up.

  • Were going to draft 3-10. It all depends on games like todays
    and how many games we are given. I want them to play their
    best, but just end up short. The team is young, but certain types
    of errors can't be overlooked.

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    Wilkes drafted Roy Halladay and Chris carpenter in Toronto right??

  • In reply to Colman Conneely:

    Yep, he's pretty good at finding pitchers. Hasn't worked out for him as much as he would like, but Cashner and Samardzija have potential front line stuff. McNutt seemed headed in that direction before the wheels came off.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    Let's not forget he was the braniac who chose Hayden Simpson.

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    This was an excellent hire by the FO, and the fact that Wilken is staying makes it all the better. I am curious as to what the Padres are thinking.

  • In reply to Michael Caldwell:

    It's got to be tough to be the Padres because not only do you lose players, you eventually lose FO guys because you can't keep players they acquired long enough to win. Has to be frustrating.

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    In reply to John Arguello:

    John, was his contact up? or are the Cubs onna have to compensate thePads for real this time ?

  • Thanks for posting the link to the interview. Really good stuff. I can see why they wanted to get him, and I'm excited about the future of the Cubs.

  • In reply to SVAZCUB:

    Your welcome. I thought that was pretty good too. Definitely seems to share the philosophy.

  • Any thoughts on who Theo might snag from Boston's FO as their contracts expire? I remember there was a lot of talk when we hired him that he'd only be allowed to bring 2 people, which made it sound like he wanted to bring more. (And I don't think he even got to bring those two.)

  • In reply to Carne Harris:

    I know they were interested in Brian O'Halloran before and I want to say David Finley as well. Maybe when their contracts expire.

  • In reply to John Arguello:

    I wonder when that is. I was looking up when Strasburg's contract expires too, just as a sort of wishful thinking. From what I could tell, it's after the 2013 season.

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    In reply to Carne Harris:

    No way nats let him test FA..

  • In reply to Colman Conneely:

    Yeah, you're probably right. But what a day for a daydream. And the timing would work out nicely too.

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