The Detroit Tigers hired Jeff Greenberg as their new general manager Thursday, filling out their front office a year after Scott Harris joined the team as president of baseball operations.
A graduate of Columbia Law School, Greenberg earned the reputation in the Cubs organization for intelligent and detail-oriented work, and in 2021, as an assistant GM, he spent much of the year doing similar duties to those of a general manager.
"I'm thrilled to add an executive of Jeff's quality to our baseball operations leadership team," Harris said in a statement. "Throughout this search, it was important for me to find someone who can fit seamlessly into the culture we're building here. I also wanted to bring in someone with a fresh perspective and new ideas that could challenge us on a daily basis and make us all better as we strive towards our goal of bringing postseason baseball back to Detroit."
At 71-81, the Tigers look to be on the upswing, with strong years from a core of young players -- outfielders Riley Greene and Kerry Carpenter, plus first baseman Spencer Torkelson -- and promising performances from pitchers Tarik Skubal, Matt Manning and Reese Olson. Colt Keith, one of the best hitting prospects in baseball, should arrive next season as well.
With the retirement of Miguel Cabrera and left-hander Eduardo Rodriguez potentially opting out of the final three years of his contract, the only money the Tigers have on the books in 2024 and beyond is the $98 million owed to shortstop Javier Baez through 2027.
In the American League Central, the worst division in baseball, one good offseason can change the trajectory of an organization.
Greenberg's influence in the Tigers organization is expected to run the gamut. With the Blackhawks, Greenberg built the foundation for one of the strongest analytics departments in the NHL, which now has more than 10 staffers and will continue to implement the systems Greenberg put in place.
"It's an extraordinary honor to take on this role with one of the most historic franchises in Major League Baseball," Greenberg said in a statement. "... It became clear that this organization is headed in a great direction with an incredible culture of development and innovation that I'm excited to be part of.
"Another constant message in those conversations was that Tigers fans want to see winning baseball deep into October. I'm excited to get to work with our front office on off-season and longer-term plans to make that our reality."
Greenberg, whose father, Chuck, is a longtime sports executive and once owned the Texas Rangers, worked in Major League Baseball's labor relations department, as well as in lower-level jobs with the Diamondbacks and Pirates, before joining the Cubs.