It all happened very fast for Joe Jordan, who left his job today after seven years as the Orioles scouting director to take the position of head of player development for the Philadelphia Phillies.
Jordan said as he was flying home Friday from the Orioles’ instructional league in Sarasota Fla., the Phillies were asking permission to interview him. That interview took place Monday and yesterday afternoon he was offered the Phillies’ position.
Jordan said he could have stayed with the Orioles for the 2012 season.
“I believe so,” Jordan said by phone. “You know, I’m very respectful of the process when you have changes at the top. Whoever comes in as general manager of the Orioles needs to have the ability to structure their front office the way they want. It got in the way, if you will, of really making plans, not so much for 2012, but beyond. I understand the situation, so 2012 would probably have been an option for me. Beyond that, no.”
I asked Jordan if, as some have rumored, he had some issues or problems dealing with the player development department during his O’s tenure?
“I think what happens with this question is, it’s very hard to put it in the right way so you don’t point fingers and blame other people,” he said. “Our business is a bottom-line business. Every organization I’ve been a part of, you have challenges every day between scouting and player development. The good organizations find the way to marry the two into one, but there are still challenges as far as what certain players do and they will never end.”
Some fans feel Jordan was not able to do his job to the fullest extent, due to budget or staffing issues. He said that was not the case.
“I was given plenty to be successful, I’ll say that. I’ve always basically answered that question the same way. There is not a perfect situation out there, but I’ve been given a lot of money to sign players. From a staffing standpoint, I never felt like we were short. The addition we made last year with Ron Hopkins (as a national crosschecker) really completed the staff. We had plenty to be successful and have good drafts,” he said.
So, after seven years as scouting director, how does he grade himself as he leaves to join the Phillies?
“I think the body of work was good. I’m a self-evaluator and I’m very aware I made decisions and some haven’t worked out and some haven’t worked out yet. I think we were looking for the right things. I believe in tools, athletes and baseball players and that is what we were looking for from day one. There is ability in the system and there is more coming,” Jordan said.
Jordan did say that all 21 of his full-time scouts were offered contracts to stay with the Orioles for 2012 and he believes 17 to 18 will remain with the club for at least one more season.
I’ll post more of Jordan’s quotes on Thursday morning including yet another discussion of his selection of Matt Hobgood in the 2009 draft.