Behind every playoff team lies an equally successful player development department, the folks responsible for taking a recent draftee or signee and molding him into a big leaguer. But developing players is only part of the formula in constructing a winning roster.First, talent must be identified by an area scout,
Behind every playoff team lies an equally successful player development department, the folks responsible for taking a recent draftee or signee and molding him into a big leaguer. But developing players is only part of the formula in constructing a winning roster.
First, talent must be identified by an area scout, who, after evaluating a player's physical skill sets and make up, will pass that information to the organization's regional crosschecker. From there, the regional crosschecker will put together a preferential list based on the players in his designated area to turn it over to a national crosschecker, who then works with the scouting director (as well as other front-office personnel) to compile a nationwide list of players.
:: How the postseason teams were built ::
After a master list is in place, teams devise a specific drafting or international strategy, and should a player on said list ultimately be drafted or signed, the scout that filed his initial report receives the credit. It's through this process that teams attempt to build for the future, knowing that just a few scouting successes can create the foundation of a winning team for in the years to come.
Along with MLBPipeline.com's analysis of each team's projected Division Series rosters, we're also breaking down which scouting directors and, in some cases, area scouts, have had the greatest impact on the 2016 postseason.
So as the playoffs unfold, be sure to keep these nine names in mind.
It's safe to say that the Giants' three World Series titles in five years, from 2010-14, would not have been possible without Barr, the club's vice president and assistant general manager of scouting and international operations. Under Barr, the Giants drafted players such as Buster Posey and Brandon Crawford (2008), Brandon Belt (2009) and Joe Panik (2010), not to mention relievers Josh Osich and Derek Law (2011).
Chadd served as the Red Sox's scouting director from 2002-04, during which time he spearheaded the drafts that produced both Jon Lester (2002) and Dustin Pedroia (2004). He took on the same position with the Tigers in 2005 and made an immediate impact by taking Andrew Miller (2006) and Rick Porcello (2007) in the first round in consecutive years. And had Detroit reached the postseason in 2016, Chadd would have been able to add the No. 44 overall pick from the 2010 Draft, Nick Castellanos -- and a host of other recent Tigers draft picks -- to his resume.
Fagg has helped to flood the Rangers' system with domestic and international talent since being promoted to senior director of amateur scouting from national crosschecker in late 2009. He helped land international signees Jurickson Profar in 2009 and both Rougned Odor and Nomar Mazara in 2011, setting the stage for the high-profile signing of Yu Darvish in 2012. Fagg's success in the draft includes current Rangers Alex Claudio (2010), Ryan Rua (2011) and Keone Kela (2012), as well pitchers Kyle Hendricks, Carl Edwards Jr. (2011) and Justin Grimm (2010), all of whom the Cubs acquired from Texas via trades in subsequent years. Originally an area scout for the Rangers from 1992-2001, Fagg also is credited with the signing of 1999 first-rounder Colby Lewis.
Promoted to director of amateur scouting in November 2007, Brad Grant is responsible for drafting eight players on the Indians' projected playoff roster. That includes three former first-round picks in Lonnie Chisenhall (2008), Francisco Lindor (2011) and Tyler Naquin (2012), second-rounder Jason Kipnis (2009) and setup man Cody Allen, a 23rd-round selection in 2011. Grant also is responsible for signing breakout star Jose Ramirez (2009) and drafting Red Sox lefty Drew Pomeranz in 2010, when the Indians took him with the No. 5 overall pick out of Ole Miss.
Mike Soper, currently a regional supervisor for the Indians, is credited with signing two players on Cleveland's projected roster during his time as area scout covering both Florida and Puerto Rico. He's responsible for the selection of All-Star shortstop Francisco Lindor, whom the Indians took with the No. 8 overall pick in the 2011 Draft, as well as backup catcher Roberto Pérez, a 33rd-round pick in 2008. Both players were products of the Florida prep ranks.
Currently the Phillies' director of player development, Jordon worked as the Orioles' amateur scouting director from 2005-2011, meaning he was responsible for drafting six playoff-bound Orioles in Zach Britton (2006), Matt Wieters (2007), Caleb Joseph (2008), Mychal Givens (2009), Manny Machado (2010) -- area scout John Martin deserves credit for signing both Givens and Machado -- and Dylan Bundy (2011). Jordan's 2007 Draft also yielded 2015 National League Cy Young Award winner Jake Arrieta.
Working under Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer, first in Boston and now in Chicago, Jason McLeod, the Cubs' senior vice president of player development and scouting, drafted a pair of franchise-caliber players in Anthony Rizzo (Red Sox, 2007) and Kris Bryant (2013), who combined for 71 home runs and 211 RBIs in 2016. Unsurprisingly, McLeod also left a lasting mark on Boston's roster with Draft picks Clay Buchholz (2005) and Christian Vázquez (2008), as well as 2009 international signee Xander Bogaerts. He also drafted Dodgers outfielder Josh Reddick (2006) and Giants reliever Hunter Strickland (2007).
Powell's scouting career began with the Reds back in 1974, and he's since gone on to hold scouting roles with the Pirates, Twins, Rays and Braves. As a Pirates area scout, Powell is credited with landing All-Star slugger José Bautista, whom Pittsburgh selected in the 20th round of the 2000 Draft as a draft-and-follow pick before signing him the following year. In 2006, Powell was hired by the Rays to cover the Southwest, which was where he discovered left-hander Matt Moore, currently with the Giants, pitching in the New Mexico prep ranks. At Powell's insistence, the Rays would go on to nab Moore in the eighth round of the 2008 Draft, signing him for $115,000.
White struck gold with numerous picks during his two stints as Dodgers scouting director (2002-06 and 2010-14), as he's credited with drafting Clayton Kershaw (2006), Joc Pederson (2010) and Corey Seager (2012), as well as landing international signees Kenley Jansen (2004), Yasiel Puig and Julio Urías (2012). White's impact can be seen elsewhere in the postseason, too, as both Russell Martin (2002) and Carlos Santana (2004) are products of his time with the Dodgers organization.
Mike Rosenbaum is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @GoldenSombrero.