The Cards System and Luhnow at Five Years

Five years after his hiring, St. Louis Cardinals Vice President Jeff Luhnow looks backward and forward in the first installment of a four-part interview.

In October, 2003, the St. Louis Cardinals announced an executive addition, the impact of which could not be fully appreciated at the time. Jeff Luhnow, with a strong business resume but no baseball experience, was hired to develop tools and analytic methods to mesh with traditional scouting.

Five years and several promotions later, the 41-year-old carries the much broader responsibility of Amateur Scouting and Player Development. In layman's terms, Luhnow owns the draft and the minor league system for the Cardinals organization.

In the first installment of a four-part audio interview, Luhnow recaps progress made across the organization over the last five seasons and their metrics of success.

We then move to a yearly recap of recent draft classes, starting with 2005 and 2006. Players discussed in detail include Daryl Jones, Tyler Greene and Mark McCormick from '05 and Adam Ottavino and Shane Robinson from '06. Plans for six-year minor league free agent additions are also mentioned.


Coming up

In Part Two, Luhnow will review the drafts of 2007 and 2008. We discuss player position movement as well as those areas where the Cardinals are looking to add more strength.

We will shift gears in the third installment of the series, looking into the international program, including re-allocation of financial resources, potential rules changes, PED suspensions, the international pipeline and the opportunity in Asia.

In the final segment, we have a fast a furious discussion about a number of topics, including Samuel Freeman, the Palm Beach and Springfield rotations for 2009, Steven Hill, Jose Martinez, Hector Cardenas, Richard Castillo and more.

Brian Walton can be reached via email at

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