Most fans probably paid it no mind, but the Cubs may have made their most important hire of the offseason when they brought Jim Benedict into the front office. Though his title is the catch-all “Special Assistant,” Benedict’s expertise is in pitching development.
A former minor-league pitcher and longtime scout and pitching instructor, Benedict has a history of evaluating and developing pitchers at nearly every level of the game. Immediately prior to joining the Cubs, he served as the Marlins’ VP of pitching development for two years. He’ll be tasked with coordinating the Cubs’ efforts to do with their young arms what they’ve only managed to do with their bats thus far.
We haven’t yet gotten the chance to hear what Benedict has to say about his new organization, but here’s a clip of him discussing his thoughts on evaluating Marlins pitchers this past spring.