Well, this is cool. I’m a little behind in hearing about it since for some reason when I woke up I went straight into washing-dishes-while-listening-to-Brian-Fallon mode instead of immediately scrolling through Twitter on a cold white seat as I tend to do, but I was pleasantly surprised to see the news that the Padres have hired Dave Cameron to head up their Research and Development department. One of the great analytical minds in the game, Cameron had spent just shy of the past decade enlightening us with his work at FanGraphs.
Cameron made the announcement in his final post at FanGraphs. You should definitely go read the whole thing, but here’s a little taste:
I definitely wasn’t looking to leave FanGraphs. This place was home. But when A.J. Preller called to gauge my interest in working for their organization, I was intrigued by the thought of a new challenge. When I met with Andy Green, I was inspired to think about the possibilities of using analysis to help players improve on the field. And while I will always love FanGraphs and the people here, the opportunity to help continue to build a winning organization in San Diego was one I did not want to pass up.
The move is not unprecedented. The Astros started the — well, I don’t know that I’d call it a trend — over five years ago when they started hiring guys from Baseball Prospectus left and right, and the Cubs were also early adopters of the idea. Those teams are the two that the Padres are most often compared to as far as their building-up-from-the-bottom process, and they’ve won the past two World Series, so those are good footsteps to follow in, regardless of how long it took to get on board.