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Brew Crew
11-10-2008, 03:04 PM
MILWAUKEE -- The Brewers restocked the uppermost levels of their scouting department from within on Monday, when Bruce Seid was elevated to amateur scouting director and Ray Montgomery was named his top assistant.
Seid, formerly Milwaukee's West Coast crosschecker, and Montgomery, who was Midwest crosschecker, replace Jack Zduriencik and Tony Blengino, both of whom left for Seattle last month. Zduriencik was named Mariners general manager, and he brought along Blengino as his scouting director.

Zduriencik leaves big shoes to fill. He ran Milwaukee's amateur scouting operation beginning in 2000 and was one of only a handful of baseball officials to survive a September 2002 front-office purge, leaving him to help rebuild the team mostly from within. High Draft picks under Zduriencik included former first-rounders Ryan Braun (2005), Prince Fielder (2002) and Rickie Weeks (2003), all of whom helped the Brewers end a 26-year postseason drought by winning the National League Wild Card in 2008.

Including catcher Jason Kendall, who was Pittsburgh's first-round pick in 1992, when Zduriencik was the Pirates' scouting director, seven of the Brewers' eight positional starters on Opening Day were Zduriencik's Draft picks.

Brewers general manager Doug Melvin, who left Zduriencik, then-assistant scouting director Tom Flanagan and then-assistant farm director Scott Martens in place when he took over as GM in September 2002, had said he wanted to retain some consistency in the Brewers' scouting operation, and requested that Zduriencik only take a few Milwaukee colleagues to Seattle.

Melvin identified Montgomery and Seid early on as the top internal candidates to fill the open positions.

"I recognize how important it is to have stability in your scouting," Melvin said.

Seid has spent the past two seasons as West Coast crosschecker after nine years as a Brewers scout responsible for Southern California and Southern Nevada. He scouted for the Padres from 1992-96, then spent one season in a similar capacity with the Pirates before joining the Brewers organization. Seid was the Cubs' fourth-round Draft pick in 1980 and played three Minor League seasons.

Montgomery, who played 13 professional seasons, including three in the big leagues with the Astros from 1996-98, has been a Brewers scout for the past six seasons including the past two in his current post. He scouted and signed Weeks in 2003, during his tenure scouting South Texas and Louisiana.

The Brewers have had a busy two weeks of hiring staff before beginning to focus more earnestly on player moves. The free-agency period opens on Friday.

Since Oct. 30, Melvin has hired a new manager (Ken Macha), bench coach (Willie Randolph) and third-base coach (Brad Fischer), while giving new roles to two incumbent coaches (Dale Sveum as hitting coach and Bill Castro as pitching coach). The team still must hire a bullpen coach to replace Castro.

Melvin really isn't messing around. The staff is nearly complete.