12/03/09 7:10 PM EST
Nats hire Rizzo's father as advisor
Longtime Major League scout joins son Mike's staff
By Bill Ladson / MLB.com
A scout for more than 40 years, Rizzo joins his ninth franchise and his son for the second time. Mike and Phil worked together for seven seasons with the D-backs, with whom Mike was a scouting director and Phil was Arizona's special assignment scout.
"It's good to have him officially on board again," Mike Rizzo said. "He was with me for a lot of years in Arizona and he has helped us out in an unofficial type of situation [in Washington]. But it's good to have him full-time and recognize him as one of our elite kind of evaluators.
"Obviously, I feel comfortable going to him for advice and ideas. He is a guy that has a lot of baseball knowledge to give."
Phil was the first person who informed the D-backs to keep their eyes on Brandon Webb. Phil scouted Webb when the righty was attending the University of Kentucky. The team drafted Webb in the eighth round of the 2000 First-Year Player Draft. Webb won the National League Cy Young Award six years later.
"[My dad] was just doing his job," Mike Rizzo said. "He saw a young pitching prospect that he liked. He passed the information along to the people above him. He recognized a good-looking prospect. We scouted Webb the right way. We were fortunate enough that Webb was there in the eighth round. We took a chance on him on my dad's recommendation, and it panned out. He'll say it was a total team effort, which it was."
In May 2008, Phil was one of eight scouts to comprise the inaugural class of the Professional Baseball Scouts Hall of Fame. Phil is credited with signing right-hander Bob Wickman, left-hander Bob Kipper, catcher Mike Matheny, infielder Dick Schofield and infielder Mark Loretta.
Bill Ladson is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.