Update: As reported by Alex Speier of the Boston Globe and confirmed by Patrick Mooney of The Athletic, Cubs assistant GM and VP of Pitching Craig Breslow is among the candidates who have interviewed with the Red Sox for their top baseball ops position. This is a step up from what was initially reported about a month ago, but it’s interesting to see the Breslow has indeed been officially connected to the Red Sox.
The Cubs have made huge strides in their pitching development since 2019, when they finally realized and moved to correct their philosophical and personnel-based shortcomings. A huge part of that overhaul was hiring former longtime pitcher and certified genius Craig Breslow as Director of Strategic Initiatives in January of that year. He was elevated to Director of Pitching a few months later and was named assistant GM and VP of Pitching in November 2020.
In those roles, Breslow has overseen the Cubs’ pitching development infrastructure as it’s gone from a laughingstock that failed to produce any arms of note to one of the most respected units in the game. Now, however, it appears as though a new opportunity may call the Connecticut native and Yale alum back to New England.
As Peter Gammons tweeted Saturday afternoon, Breslow is heading to Boston to direct the pitching development program for the Red Sox. While this could be seen as a lateral move from an organizational standpoint, Gammons noted that Breslow and his family live just outside of Boston in Newton, Mass.
There are rumblings eminating from Chicago that Craig Breslow is moving to the Red Sox to direct their piching develelopment program. Kelly, Craig and their children still live in Newton
— Peter Gammons (@pgammo) September 23, 2023
Even with so much of the heavy lifting done and with GM Carter Hawkins heading things up from a pitching perspective, this would be a huge loss for the Cubs. Breslow has been lauded as one of the smartest people in the game going back to his playing days, a reputation that started when he earned a B.A. in molecular biophysics and biochemistry from Yale. He was also admitted to the NYU School of Medicine, though he deferred that path in order to pursue what ended up being a 13-year MLB career.
In addition to the work he’s got to do on the roster this winter, Jed Hoyer is going to have to prioritize a replacement for Breslow. What’s really tricky is that this isn’t something the organization will feel right away because development has such a long tail. Let’s all just keep our fingers crossed that they’ve got enough momentum on the pitching front to keep improving sans Breslow.
Ed. note: Sahadev Sharma tweeted Saturday that he was told there’s been “zero contact” between the Red Sox and Cubs regarding Breslow.