Kevin Towers, the longest-tenured general manager in baseball, was let go by the Padres last night. He was at the helm for 498 of Trevor Hoffman's saves and 740 of Tony Gwynn's hits, but the team went 1,107-1,160 under his watch. There is still one more year left on his contract, which Cot's says makes him "one of the top five or six highest-paid GMs."
Tim Sullivan of The San Diego Union Tribune spoke to team CEO Jeff Moorad about the situation, who was very complimentary of Towers, as you'd expect.
“The organization is indebted to Kevin for not only the 14 years he served as general manager, but for the fact that the club is well-positioned to go forward into the future,” Moorad told the Union-Tribune in an exclusive interview before Friday night's game at Petco Park. “I think we need to build a better baseball operations department, better skilled at the areas we're committed to going forward.
“I admire (Towers') skills very much and respect his relationships that exist around the game. But I think over the next period of time, our focus is on more of a strategic approach to drafting and development that has a chance to compete in the division year-in and year-out.”
Although he did not mention specific candidates, Moorad said his search for a replacement has not been internal and indicated that it could take weeks, rather than days. Sullivan lists Diamondbacks VP Jerry DiPoto and the "semi-retired" Pat Gillick as possible replacements.