The Chicago Cubs and the NFL are working together on a strategy

Chicago Cubs (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Chicago Cubs (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images) /

The Chicago Cubs and the NFL are working together in a crash course in collecting information–and it’s working.

While the Chicago Cubs and the coronavirus pandemic have limited ‘face-to-face’ with some players, the NFL has a different plan for the Cubs. Dan Kantrovitz, the team’s new vice president of scouting, told reporters that they were in contact with NFL general managers and coaches how they handled that–six weeks ago.

Kantrovitz, a skeptic, wasn’t sure how it would play out. But overall, it was a good overlap of information. When the coronavirus forced the scouts home in early March, they relied on the video to be a good source of info.

Using video, plus feedback from the players, helped him and his staff narrow the search. So they’d highlight some at-bats, and then see what he’s thinking was on it. They did the same for the pitchers. Actually, pretty cool to hear from the ‘horse’s mouth’ on what they felt during the at-bat–pitchers, too.

The COVID-19 virus left the draft cut down to 40 rounds down to five rounds. Not at all what you wanted. Can you imagine drafting an MLB talent in the 39th round? But there isn’t one. There’s five, not 40. As part of the draft, players passed over are limited to a signing bonus of $20,000 or less. The ‘good’ part? It may drive people to college–fingers crossed.

The Cubs believe they have made great strides with in-house video and the Zoom interviews.  Kantrovitz believes they are as prepared or more when coming up on the draft. But the reason they did it? Money. Plain and simple.

MLB will cut it’s draft from 40 to five rounds this year. The total cost saved will be an estimated $30 million per team. There will be 160 players on draft day, making the signing pool bonus $236K–give or take. The amount of signing bonus pool money eliminated? Well, how about that? The total comes to $29,578,100–just shy of $30 million.

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The Cubs hope you at least peek in on it. Heck, we haven’t baseball since mid-March. We can use a little baseball in our lives. Let us hope that the Cubs don’t waste it all. I know I wouldn’t.