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MLB Update: Harvard Baseball in the Front Office

MLB Update: Harvard Baseball in the Front Office

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – Ranging from general managers to professional scouts, 12 former Harvard students are working in MLB front office positions. Ten have donned the crimson and white as Harvard ball players, including single-season hits leader David Forst, first in all-time strikeouts hurler Ben Crockett, single-season saves leader Steffan Wilson, and third all-time batting average holder Trey Hendricks.

These Harvard alumni have found successful career paths in the MLB above and beyond the diamond. Four find themselves in baseball operations, four in player development and scouting, and another quartet working as general managers.

The full list of Crimson in the MLB front office ranks includes:

David Forst, General Manager, Oakland Athletics
Former slugger and All-America third-team shortstop David Forst was recently promoted to General Manager of the Oakland Athletics after 16 years working in the major leagues. In the 1998 Harvard campaign, Forst posted a .406 batting average after raking in 67 hits (single-season record) and leading the Crimson squad to 36 wins, a program milestone.

Mike Hill, President of Baseball Operations, Miami Marlins
Mike Hill, a four year letterwinner on the diamond and gridiron, was announced as the President of Baseball Operations for the Miami Marlins after a seven-year stint as General Manager. Hill was drafted by the Texas Rangers and had a successful showing in the minor leagues before joining the Tampa Bay front office in 1995. Eventually, Hill was hired by Miami and then drew up one of the largest contracts in MLB history to Giancarlo Stanton.

Jeff Bridich, General Manager, Colorado Rockies
A former outfielder, catcher, and team captain for the Crimson, Jeff Bridich was promoted to be the Colorado Rockies' GM in 2014 after holding various leadership roles over more than a decade in professional front offices. Bridich tallied a .341 batting average in 1999 and led the Crimson to a NCAA Regional berth.

David Stearns, General Manager, Milwaukee Brewers
David Stearns was recently named the General Manager of the Milwaukee Brewers organization and currently is the youngest GM in the MLB. A 2007 graduate of Harvard, Stearns had built an impressive résumé since his time in Cambridge as a student intern with the Pittsburgh Pirates and working for the Mets, Indians, and Astros. Stearns also recently called up former Crimson star and now-MLB hurler Brent Suter.

Peter Woodfork, Senior Vice President, Baseball Operations, MLBPeter Woodfork was named Major League Baseball's Senior Vice President of Baseball Operations on March 8, 2011. In this capacity, Peter's primary responsibilities include oversight of umpiring and instant replay, among other baseball operations functions.

Prior to joining MLB, Woodfork spent five years as the Assistant General Manager of the Arizona Diamondbacks, where he also served as a Vice President in 2010. While in Arizona, Peter primarily focused on the D-backs' 40-man roster management as well as contract negotiations, scouting and Minor League player development. He came to Arizona by way of the Boston Red Sox, where he served for three seasons (2003-05) as Director of Baseball Operations and Assistant Director of Player Development.

Woodfork is a 1999 graduate of Harvard University, where he earned a degree in psychology and was a starting infielder for the Crimson baseball team, which won three Ivy League Championships in his four seasons.

Matthew Silverman, Director of Baseball Operations, Tampa Bay Rays
A 1998 Harvard graduate, Matthew Silverman earned his degree in economics and joined the Rays organization in 2005 and became Tampa Bay's Director of Baseball Operations. Silverman was awarded the George M. Steinbrenner III Citizen of the Year Award from the Sports Club of Tampa Bay for his positive impact on the community and has been named twice to the "Forty Under 40" accomplished sports executives list from Street and Smith's Business Journal.

Ben Crockett, Director of Player Development, Boston Red Sox
All-time Crimson strikeouts leader Ben Crockett has been working with the Boston Red Sox organization since 2007. Picked in the third round by the Colorado Rockies in the 2002 MLB Draft, Crockett performed well on the mound in his four-year minor league career. The Red Sox organization later hired him as an intern, and then worked his way to the Director of Player Development at the start of the 2012 season.

Steffan Wilson, National Crosschecker, Milwaukee Brewers
After working within the Milwaukee Brewers organization, Steffan Wilson is now the national crosschecker in the scouting department for the Los Angeles Angels. A former Crimson baseball standout and Ivy League Rookie of the Year, he holds the program record for saves in a season (6) and was drafted by the Brewers in 2007 as a utility player for five years.

Jonathan Strangio, Assistant General Manager, Los Angeles Angels
A recent 2010 Harvard graduate, Strangio has exponentially gained knowledge in the front office space and is in his second year as Assistant General Manager for the Los Angeles Angels. Strangio was a four-year ball player for the Crimson.

Ben Sestanovich, Assistant Director of Player Development, San Diego Padres
After posting a 3.26 earned run average during his senior campaign, Ben Sestanovish entered the front office field and was recently hired as the Assistant Director of Player Development for the San Diego Padres.

Trey Hendricks, MLB Scout, Cleveland Indians
As a Crimson student-athlete, Trey Hendricks' career posted plenty of numbers for the record books, including third in average (.373), second in doubles (44), and fifth in homeruns (20). After three seasons in minor league baseball, Hendricks pursued a career in baseball's front office and is now a veteran scout for the Cleveland Indians.

Greg Davey, Baseball Operations Assistant, Chicago Cubs
After his freshman season, Greg Davey continued as a student manager for the Crimson ball club. He now serves as a Baseball Operations Assistant for the Chicago Cubs.

Shaun Rubin, Baseball Operations Intern, Oakland Athletics
Lefty Shaun Rubin posted a career earned run average of 3.80 with 36 strikeouts in nearly 50 innings pitched out of the Crimson pen. He is now serving as a Baseball Operations Intern for the Oakland Athletics.

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