From the Toronto Sun -
Tim Wilken, former Jays scouting director, named scout of the year at the winter meetings had plenty of bouquets and barbs in his speech.
He gave commissioner Bud Selig a shot for his comment about scouts giving large signing bonuses to players “who don’t work out” saying “Buck O’Neill should have been elected to Cooperstown while he was alive.”
He jabbed former Major League Baseball CEO Sandy Alderson for instituting a slot money policy for draft picks.
And after thanking everyone with the Jays from Paul Beeston and Bobby Mattick, to Pat Gillick and Howard Starkman to Charlie Wilson he summed up his Jays days.
“We won two World Series, five AL East titles, were organization of the year twice. Seven of 12 years we produced the most major-leaguers and had 15 straight first-rounders make it,” Wilken told the crowded ball room. “With respect to the Yankees, we handled them better from 1983-94 than anyone.
“We also had six scouts of the year, a batting champ, an MVP, six Gold Glove winners, three Cy Young Award winners. I still don’t understand why you wouldn’t want to live in a beautiful city like Toronto full time.”
The final line is directed to Jays general manager J.P. Ricciardi.
After 25 years with the Blue Jays, Wilken spent two years with the Devil Rays and has been with the Cubs since 2005. Besides the shots that he takes at the Jays here, which are interesting, the thing that caught my eye was the fact that Toronto had 15 straight first-rounders make it to the show.
What’s the Yankees record for most in a row, ever? It’s probably something like seven straight – with the picks from 1966 through 1972 making it.
Maybe the Yankees should have hired Wilken when the Jays cut him loose?