Josh Byrnes Rumors

Poll: Mets’ Next General Manager

After a first round of interviews, the Mets have narrowed their general manager search down to two candidates: Sandy Alderson and Josh Byrnes. Both have experience running a team, Alderson with the A's (1983-1997) and Byrnes with the Diamondbacks (2005-2010), and both surely have different strengths and weaknesses. Byrnes gives them a younger exec perhaps more well-versed in today's game, Alderson a veteran front office presence with deep roots in the game.

Both Alderson and Byrnes will interview for the second time this week, and a decision will presumably be made shortly thereafter. Time for the poll…

Who should the Mets hire to be their next GM?

Click here to vote, and here to see the results. 


Mets GM Interviews Start This Week

The Mets will interview Sandy Alderson, Rick Hahn, Allard Baird, and Josh Byrnes this week for their general manager vacancy, according to Dan Martin of the New York PostDavid Lennon of Newsday tweets that it's Baird today, Hahn on Tuesday, Byrnes on Wednesday, and Alderson on Thursday or Friday.  Martin adds that a team official told him other candidates could be added to the list.

Alderson is "perceived to be the favorite," writes SI's Jon Heyman.  Heyman notes that Alderson has longtime ties to Mets owner Fred Wilpon, as well as support from fans and media members.  Andy Martino of the New York Daily News, however, puts on the brakes and provides four tough questions for Alderson that he'd like to see answered.


Odds & Ends: Young, Torre, Williams, Bass, Ethier

Links for Thursday, after lots of chatter about Derek Jeter's acting ability

  • The Padres will wait until Saturday to activate Chris Young from the disabled list, at which point they'll need to remove someone from the 40-man roster according to MLB.com's Corey Brock (Twitter link).
  • Dylan Hernandez of The Los Angeles Times tweets that Joe Torre has informed his wife and Dodgers GM Ned Colletti about what he plans to do next season, but he will not make his decision public just yet.
  • White Sox GM Kenny Williams chatted with Joe Posnanski about football and the challenges of being in second place. Check it out at SI.com.
  • Brian Bass cleared waivers and accepted an assignment to Triple A, according to Dejan Kovacevic of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (on Twitter). The Pirates designated Bass for assignment earlier in the week. 
  • Andre Ethier told MLB.com's Ken Gurnick that it doesn't even make sense to comment on the rumor that he'd like to play in Boston.
  • Joe Pawlikowski of FanGraphs argues that the Royals should offer Wilson Betemit a contract this offseason, since he can be something of a "bridge between the present and the future."
  • Indians GM Mark Shapiro told Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports that he and assistant GM Chris Antonetti met with friend and former colleague Josh Byrnes. The former D'Backs GM "would make anybody better," including the Indians, Shapiro said.


Odds & Ends: Dunn, Phillies, Crisp, Molina, Fielder

Saturday linkage..


D’Backs Meeting To Consider Major Moves

The D’Backs will consider trading anyone but Justin Upton and Ian Kennedy, as they evaluate the best way to turn the team around, according to Jon Heyman of SI.com. Heyman hears that owner Ken Kendrick, president Derrick Hall and GM Josh Byrnes are in the midst of meetings to determine the best course of action for the 24-37 team. Last week, Hall told the Arizona Republic that he was open to changes given the club’s disappointing start.

Upton and Kennedy will not be dealt, and Mark Reynolds is likely to stay, but the D’Backs would consider moving others. They would listen on Dan Haren, though the club might prefer to keep him if they believe they can contend in the near future. Adam LaRoche and Kelly Johnson are possible trade candidates for GM Josh Byrnes, who admits he has to consider trades.

Byrnes has been fighting hard to keep manager A.J. Hinch around, according to Heyman. Hinch, who had never managed before taking over the club last year, does not make a seven-figure salary, so the D’Backs could fire him without having to absorb too much money. And the man who hired Hinch? Heyman reports that no one realistically expects Byrnes to be in the line of fire.


GM Initiation: Josh Byrnes

We're kicking off a new series here at MLBTR called GM Initiation.  Each post in the series will look at a general manager's first trade.

Josh Byrnes was hired as Diamondbacks GM on October 28th, 2005.  His first deal came on December 7th at the Winter Meetings.  Byrnes and Braves GM John Schuerholz agreed on a deal to send catcher Johnny Estrada to Arizona for relievers Oscar Villarreal and Lance Cormier.  Estrada went on to have a solid '06 campaign for the D'Backs and was used in a trade to acquire Doug Davis after the season.  Both relievers pitched two seasons for Atlanta, with Villarreal posting better numbers.

Byrnes was kind enough to answer a few questions about his first trade.

MLB Trade Rumors: 2005 marked your first Winter Meetings as a general manager.  How would you describe the experience?

Josh Byrnes: The 2005 Winter Meetings were busy. We were exploring many trades to reshape the roster. It was our first time together as a larger group in that type of setting.

MLBTR: Did you enter the '05 Meetings intent on acquiring a starting catcher?  About how many different catchers were you seriously considering?

Byrnes: We were trying to improve in the middle of the field. Later that month, we acquired Orlando Hudson, Eric Byrnes and Chris Young. Estrada was the catcher who made the most sense at the time.

MLBTR: What kind of relationship did you have with Braves GM John Schuerholz prior to the Estrada deal?  How long did it take to put the trade together?

Byrnes: I knew John a little bit. The trade came together fairly quickly. We had a few discussions at the meetings and agreed after a few conversations.

MLBTR: Does the Estrada trade hold significance for you, since it was your first acquisition?  Is the significance diminished because you were such an active trader that month?

Byrnes: I said at the time that the deal carried some significance to me because we did it with John. Certainly, he is one the best (if not the best) GM’s of all time. He is also very passionate about the game and the industry, so it is memorable to have made my first trade with John.


Odds & Ends: Blue Jays, Gomes, Lincecum

Links for Saturday…


GM Trade Histories: NL West

Today Brendan Bianowicz updates the GM Trade History series for the NL West.  You can download the info-packed Excel spreadsheets below.


Diamondbacks Rumors: Webb, Byrnes

Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic spoke to General Managing Partner Ken Kendrick of the Arizona Diamondbacks about the team's future. Here are a few of the highlights:

  • The team has "every intention" of exercising Brandon Webb's $8.5MM option.
  • Like GM Josh Byrnes said earlier in the week, there's no guarantee the team will hang on to outfielder Eric Byrnes just because of his bloated contract. Kendrick said the deal "looks like a mistake."
  • The payroll for 2010 should be in the $75MM-$79MM range, after the team spent $73MM in 2009.
  • Josh Byrnes could then have up to $20MM to address the team's needs in the offseason. Piecoro suggests that might mean looking at "the bullpen, a vacancy in the rotation, and perhaps…a veteran position player."
  • Kendrick sees the bullpen as the main priority when adding new talent this winter.

Diamondbacks Rumors: Byrnes, Lugo, Davis

Nick Piecoro of The Arizona Republic says a team source indicated that the Diamondbacks could revisit the idea of an Eric Byrnes-Julio Lugo swap now that Lugo's been designated for assignment. Byrnes is currently on the disabled list with a broken hand. The two teams had discussions about such a swap in the offseason, but the talks went nowhere.

Meanwhile, lefthander Doug Davis says he senses "they might come after me for an extension" according to Piecoro. Davis said they're not ready to starting talking terms, but GM Josh Byrnes confirms the talks. Davis' agent Steve Canter decined to talk about specifics according to MLB.com's Steve Gilbert, but he did say Davis is "player of interest to the organization."

Davis' name has popped up in trade rumors the past few weeks.