Nightengale: For MLB scouts, it’s getting harder to avoid force-out

From Bob Nightengale at USA Today on January 14, 2016, with mention of SABR member Roland Hemond:

Joe McIlvaine, the acclaimed two-time general manager who has been employed in professional baseball for 46 years as an executive or scout, suddenly can’t get a job.

Jeff Wren, 51, who has worked his entire adult life as a scout, is coming to the painful realization that he has no choice but to seek employment outside of baseball.

Baseball’s close-knit scouting fraternity has been besieged by wholesale layoffs this winter, with many pro scouts still unemployed one month before the start of spring training.

Never before has the Professional Baseball Scouts Foundation received so many formal applications for financial assistance, said executive director Cindy Picerni, with 20 scouts alone seeking help since October.

The Major League Baseball Scouting Bureau, which once employed 58 scouts, has been stripped down to 17, and getting smaller, with scouts advised to start looking elsewhere. The bureau is not closing down, contrary to industry rumors, but director Bill Bavasi acknowledged that changes are being made. The bureau will star focusing more on providing video and medical information on players, Bavasi said, spending more attention on international players.

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Originally published: January 14, 2016. Last Updated: January 14, 2016.