The Boston Red Sox announced last week that Jared Porter '03 has been promoted to Director, Professional Scouting, in what has already amounted to be one of the team's most eventful offseasons in recent memory.
Porter said his new position involves more control over the department, with more day-to-day oversight of the 12 pro scouts in the organization.
"For the most part, we scout players from other minor league systems and major league teams," Porter said. "I have a lot of information from a lot of guys. It's always busy and I travel a lot."
An avid baseball and hockey player both in high school and at Bowdoin, Porter has always been interested in sports.
"I was a pitcher, so I had the opportunity to watch a lot of games and learn," he said. "I always did that, and was always kind of an analyst of the game."
In terms of a profession, Porter was initially unsure of what he wanted to become.
"I was considering all the options throughout college, and I knew how hard it would be to break into the sports industry," he said.
In the summers after his junior and senior years, Porter interned with the Brewster Whitecaps of the Cape Cod Baseball League, a summer league for aspiring college players. In his second year there, the league brought Porter to Fenway Park, where he met with then-director of player development Ben Cherington.
Porter's first internship with the Red Sox began in January 2004 with a stint in Fort Myers, Fla. Since then, he has worked with the amateur scouting, player development, and professional scouting departments. Most recently, he was the assistant director, professional scouting for the better part of two years.
Looking forward, Porter hopes that his experience will put him on the path to becoming a major league general manager one day.
"Becoming a general manager is not a linear path in baseball, but overseeing a department is usually a prerequisite," he said. "In that regard, I'm getting really good experience."
Cherington, who was Porter's first contact with the Red Sox, inherited the role of general manager earlier this offseason after Theo Epstein left to join the Chicago Cubs. The previous director of professional scouting, Allard Baird, is the former general manager of the Kansas City Royals.
In an offseason already full of change for the Red Sox, the most recent addition was the signing of Bobby Valentine to be the next manager.
"I'm really excited to learn from him and work with him," Porter said.
He added that as time has gone on, he has gained a greater feel for how the Red Sox develops its team through working with players like Clay Buchholtz, Dustin Pedroia, Jon Lester, and Jonathan Papelbon.
"I learned evaluation skills and how to scout, and now I take it to the next level," he said. "It's one thing to scout a player, but it's something else to actually decide which players you want to acquire."
Porter said that this evaluation is a constant work-in-progress, because "you never know when a player is going to get hurt and you'll have to find someone new. You're basically available and on-call at all times."
Next week, Porter will visit Bowdoin to speak at Baxter House about his career path, discuss ways in which Bowdoin helped him get to where he is today, and conduct a question and answer session. The event will be held on Friday, December 9 at 4 p.m.