Pirates Hire Longtime Scout Wayne Mathis

The Pittsburgh Pirates have hired scout Wayne Mathis to take over amateur scouting for the draft in the southern parts of Texas and Louisiana starting in January. For the last 14 years, Mathis has worked for MLB’s scouting bureau providing reports to all 30 teams. This article mentions that Mathis will replace the Pirates’ area scout for Texas/Louisiana, who went on to a pro scouting job with the Tampa Bay Rays.

The Texas/Louisiana area scout for the Pirates this year was Tyler Stohr, who was responsible for signing Ke’Bryan Hayes, Tate Scioneaux and John Bormann from the 2015 draft class. There is no confirmation that Stohr left(and he wasn’t mentioned in the article), but that was his position in the organization, so he fits the description. Mathis played two years in the Mets’ farm system, then was out of baseball for 11 years before taking up scouting.

  • I find these comments amazing from “baseball guys” after a “their” team just had a 98 win season. I don’t think I will renew my subscription if the bucs have a down year. I won’t be able to handle the negativity!

    • It’s mostly just a few consistent posters who will likely turn around and “forget” their disenfranchisement if/when the Pirates turn in another solid season. If you think this is bad try looking at the comments in Yinzr-land at other sites and the radio.

    • Pollyanna principle at its finest.

      • There’s a justification for it. Have you considered rationally whether your reaction to everything is following a negativity bias? I look forward to you espousing that you were reasonably pessimistic about the offseason even when the Pirates make the playoffs again.

    • I remember the Pirates teams of the early seventies. Excellent teams, a not so good stadium, and too many winey fans. Back then I think that some of the complaining involved how many black faces we had on the team. But whatever the reason, the Pirates seemed to have their share of wining fans. Perhaps we need to get rid of our current administration and go back to the good old days and pick up washed up veterans at high prices. There is nothing like spending money in the off season so that we could strive for mediocrity.

  • Huntington and the Pirates are definitely on new ground/in new territory these days. No longer do we draft near the top. Now, we no longer have the luxury of keeping our best scouts, coaches, minor league managers and other administrative people, as teams like Tampa Bay begin pirating away our more successful guys. I’m disappointed that we couldn’t keep the likes of Jim Benedict, but trust that Nutting/Huntington/Connolly know where the top replacements are, just as they’ve found young talent like Polanco and hidden talent like Liriano.
    No longer are the Pirates a successful secret. If MLB stops tying one Pirate hand behind the back with rules/regulations that favor big money teams, we’ll see if this Pirate crew can remain competitive, spending less but winning more? What say you, John Dreker?

    • Not all the rules are against the Pirates. Case in point would be the competitive balance sandwich picks. Do you know what the Pirates have to show for those? A couple years of Gaby Sanchez, Trey Supak that just got traded for Jason Rodgers. And the Immortal Connor Joe.

      That’s poop in my opinion. An awful use of assets meant to give them an advantage. I wish the Pirates had more money and it snowed in Seven Springs in July. But the dumpster fire pissing away of top 40 picks in this franchise is pretty epic in my opinion. End rant.

      • I’ll take the years of Gaby Sanchez because we badly needed MLB help at 1B. And Jason Rogers has been a hitting machine through the minors for both average and power. We refer to him as a 1B, but he played 120 games at 3B in AA and AAA in 2014. In 2013 he played 1B in AA (.993 fld %, only 9 E’s in 130 games) and in 2012 played 1B in Lo A and Hi A for about 80 games. This could be a helluva pickup for the Pirates going forward, and he is MLB ready right now. Possibilities of a future IF of Bell, Hanson, Kang, and Rogers?

        The Pirates are doomed to wear Connor Joe, because we may never see what he may have been capable of because of the back injury. The numbers were not strong at Lo A in 2015 as a 23 year old, but he could have been tentative in his approach. I hope so. In hindsight, in that draft 3 picks after Joe was taken, the Houston Astro’s drafted the 2014 College Player of the Year, AJ Reed, who was a LH hitting 1B at Kentucky. He played at Hi A and AA in 2015 posting 34 HR’s/127 RBI’s/.612 Slugging Percentage. Generally recognized by the experts as the steal of the draft. Hard to get out from under that shadow.

        • Your future infield is missing a shortstop.

          • In fairness, his submission would have Kang at SS. However, I doubt it would be an every day lineup.

            I see Kang at 3B and Rogers more of a bench/utility player.

            • I assume Rogers is no more than a stop-gap until Kang is back, then a solid bench bat with some versatility. I don’t think his defense will be good enough for him to start.

            • With Kang’s injury, I don’t think he’s an everyday option at ss or 2nd base anymore. The leg damage was pretty severe and the dp’s at second would not be smooth. I think he’s a better third basemen anyway. Just my thoughts.

            • I would just as soon leave Kang at third and move on from the shortstop experiment.

        • I hope Rogers works out at 3B emjay!

      • The Connor Joe pick was awful, but his draft spot was a trade for Bryan Morris. It wasn’t a competitive balance pick they received from MLB. You may not have liked Gaby Sanchez, but his time in Pittsburgh is a lot more than you get from most picks in that area of the draft. Once you get beyond the top 20, the odds of finding a big time MLB player decline significantly

        • I don’t need a big time player. I think a hard throwing college reliever with one of those picks could have been useful by now.

          Or they could have spent all three picks on LH power and maybe hit on one.

        • Since this new front office started drafting (2008 i believe)
          played in the majors
          Alvarez 2 overall
          Mercer 79
          D’Arnaud 114
          Wilson 144
          Grossman 174
          Sanchez 4
          Black 49 traded
          Pounders 53 traded i think
          holt 265 traded to Boston
          Cumpton 267
          cole 1
          2012 2013 2014 zero.
          From 2008-2011 there lowest 1st rounder was 4th.
          The draft from 08-11 seems to be very thin, considering their draft position. Walker, McCutchen(2005 11) Hughes(2006 110) Watson (2007 278) were not drafted by this admin.
          Marte 2005 int previous admin
          Polanco 2009 int
          Harrison trade by previous admin
          So, I think the claim of this admin having home grown players is taking some credit for the previous adminstration. I do not think this admin has drafted very good considering the position of there drafts. If they could have been the worst in 12-13, maybe they would have taken Strasburg and Harper.

          • Harrison was acquired by NH & Co. Marte also wasn’t signed until 2007, though I believe that was a few months prior to the new front office taking over.

            The early drafts were definitely thin and their ”09 strategy turned out to be mostly a bust aside from one piece in the Marlon Byrd and Wandy Rodriguez trades. But we also can’t lump in much of anything from 2012 to now because it’s too soon. This year could make 2010 and 2011 look much better just with Taillon, Glasnow, Bell and (if healthy) Kingham all knocking on the door. Maybe.

          • The first 4 2010 picks were Tailon, Allie, Rojas and Kingham for those like me who may have forgotten. Maybe those 2 SP will pan out, but the position guys look like flops.
            The Connor Joe pick is one of the most puzzling of about any high pick thru the NH adminstration started.

            • BuccosFanStuckinMD
              December 27, 2015 11:04 pm

              The first round picks of the past two years were equally puzzling, time will tell if they actually pan out.
              If you’re going to have a “small ball” approach to the draft, trades, etc, you need to field a good defensive team like the Royals did the past 2 years. The Pirates are a terrible defensive team.

        • BuccosFanStuckinMD
          December 27, 2015 11:01 pm

          Thank you John – Finally, someone from this site finally admitted this and conceded that the Connor Joe pick was a bad one – instead of trying to justify it. For 2 years, I kept hearing one justification and defense of the pick (and the bad trade that resulted in the pick) after another…what makes matters worse, is we could have drafted AJ Reed – and I said that the day of the draft, not just now….
          Time will tell, but this team hasn’t drafted that well for the past 2-3 years…especially the last 2 drafts…and we made those drafts even weaker by giving away some of the high picks in very ill advised trades (Ike Davis trade, Jason Rogers trade).

          • I said the day that they made the pick it was bad and my reasoning was that when we did the draft primer, we decided between Jordan Luplow and Connor Joe for the 100th spot on the list. I liked Luplow better because he is 13 months younger and had missed some time, so I felt he had more development left. It just happened that the Pirates drafted both of them and I thought Joe was a poor pick where he was taken, while Luplow was a solid pick in the third round. I didn’t think Joe was a bad player to take, on the contrary. I would have praised them if they took him in the 3rd round. But he was not a good pick for 39th overall.

      • Yes I was wondering what they have done with those picks. The black hole know as first base keeps sucking away at resources. I would like to think one day we will actually get a first baseman.

      • If you look at the majority of picks in that range, the vast majority never make the pros. You have a handful of anecdotal “this guy was a perennial all star” but a ton of crappy players.

        If we are able to use whatever guys we draft in that slot and turn it into on field talent (either in that player or in a trade) its a win.

        If we can keep turning those competitive draft picks into role/bench players, thats far from crappy use of resources.

    • From the lower round one picks through the whole second round, historically, only 15% of those drafted become viable major league players. That means about 5 players out of 30. The other 25 wash out or just get cups of coffee.

      To trade one of those picks for a servicable major leaguer such as Gaby Sanchez, is actually a good move.

      • Lee Merry Christmas- hope all is well.

      • Serviceable where? Asia?

        No, I forgot. Ray Searage and Benedict don’t do Brandon Finnegan projects.

        • Gabby stopped taking the juice. After that he was just slow and overweight.

        • Finnegan the 17th overall pick?

          Tough to argue about how awful we’ve been in the competitive balance rounds and then act like Finnegan makes any sense in this argument. Yes, guys in the top 20 are better than the competitive balance round.

          But yes, since Gaby Sanchez wasnt a great starter its stucky use of resources. We should be drafting college relievers since guys already throwing in relief in college turn out well a ton.

  • It is mentioned in the article that stohr took a job with the Rays

    • It says “the guy” who had the job before. Nowhere does it say Stohr, so we are not reporting it as him just in case it is wrong. Just stating who it likely is referring to.