Cubs Hiring Astros Exec Ehsan Bokhari as AGM, Jason McLeod Leaving Organization
The Cubs continue to reshape their front office ahead of what promises to be a busy winter as they begin their rebuild in earnest. Carter Hawkins was hired away from Cleveland to serve as the new GM and now comes word that they are expected to hire Astros executive Ehsan Bokhari as assistant general manager.
Bokhari spent four years with the Dodgers as a senior R&D analyst before moving into a similar role with the Astros. He has served as Houston’s senior director of player evaluation for the past two years and will now add his skills to what is expected to be an increased focus on the processes involved in development.
This is a homecoming of sorts for Bokhari, who collected a masters in statistics and a Ph.D. in quantitative psychology from the University of Illinois. That academic bent has colored his experience in scouting and various aspects of baseball operations, making him an ideal addition to Jed Hoyer’s staff.
Bokhari will essentially be replacing Jason McLeod, who is leaving the organization after a decade spent in a variety of roles across development and player personnel.
“As Jed charts his course and brings in people — as he should as the president of the team — I just felt like now is a good time to seek new challenges elsewhere,” McLeod said Friday. “There’s been a lot of stories written and talk about how Theo, Jed and I have been together for so long, and it’s been such an incredible journey. But now I’m just ready to turn the page and really excited to see what other opportunities and challenges are out there for me.”
McLeod is highly thought of as a manager and motivator and has frequently been mentioned when GM openings come up. Perhaps he’s eyeing the Mets gig that no one else seems to want, or maybe it’s just a matter of needing a change of scenery and figuring out the destination later.
There is also something of a vacuum left by former AGM Randy Bush, who is remaining with the organization but shifting to an advisory role. Though he’ll still be providing input, his voice will not be as loud as Bokhari’s moving forward as the Cubs seek to implement processes that better lead to sustained success.
The more immediate results of Hoyer’s reconfigured front office will be seen this winter as they sign free agents, but it’ll take 3-5 years for all of these potential changes to really bear fruit. If nothing else, it’s nice to finally see the organization making good on years of talk about changing things that weren’t working.