Minniti is not yet 30 years old, landing a promotion from his former post as the Pirates' Director of Baseball Operations for the past two years. The Nats' press release says the following about him:
Minniti joins the Nationals after spending the previous nine seasons with the Pittsburgh Pirates, the last two as their Director of Baseball Operations. With the Pirates, Minniti's focuses included rules compliance, transactions, budgeting and contract negotiations. Minniti graduated from the University of Pittsburgh with a double major in Mathematics and Statistics.
Some blurbs on Minniti:
"(Minniti will be) in charge of handling the Major League rules and regulations as well as waivers and transactions for the Pirates...will help with the negotiation process of salary arbitration cases, as well as in other player contract negotiations."-(MLB.com, 11/2007)
"Minniti previously worked for Dave Littlefield as, essentially, his point man on baseball rules, waivers and the like. Under Huntington, he handled those issues but had additional responsibility, including accompanying the team on the road when Huntington did not." (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 11/2009)
"'I do a little bit of everything,' (Minniti) said. 'I'm responsible for managing the major league rules and regulations, along with waivers and transactions. It means a lot of late nights, but it's also been a lot of fun.'" (The York Dispatch, 2/2008)
"Minniti is twenty-seven-years-old, single, loves Jazz, and graduated from the University of Pittsburgh in 2002 with dual majors in mathematics and statistics. But don’t call him a Moneyball executive. 'I would say I’m less a statistics oriented guy but I don’t have the applied scouting experience. My belief is in the people who have spent their lives out there watching, and playing, and coaching it. The level of appreciation I have for that will never wane – it’s such a difference maker.'
Today, Minniti’s job responsibilities include “assisting Neal Huntington on everything and anything including contracts, rules, budgets, transactions, pro scouting issues, clubhouse issues, intern program, etc…essentially, anything that doesn’t directly fall into [player development] or scouting.” (NewBucs.com, 5/2008-I implore you to read the entire interview)
"There had been some speculation Minniti was being sought out by Josh Byrnes in Arizona last year and even more speculation he was being pursued by another club this winter (maybe the D’backs again?). I interviewed Minniti back in 2008 and found him to be a very articulate individual with a deep passion for the game. He’s not a traditional scout type of AGM, although he’s been dipping into scouting for years now. Instead, he’s a mathematical wizard who intimately knows the inside of the paperwork game. He’s a perfect fit for Rizzo who is the ultimate scout." (NewBucs, 11/2009)
Looks like a good hire to me. As the last quote said, he looks to be a pretty good fit with Rizzo. Well done, Nats. Keep building this system up right!