Paul DePodesta Rumors

Rosenthal’s Latest: Strasburg, Cespedes, Phils, Brewers, DePodesta

Here are the latest notes from Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports:

  • The Rangers and Nationals had trade talks involving Stephen Strasburg over the winter, per Rosenthal. Nothing ever came close to getting done in those “wide-ranging” talks, in which Steven Souza (later dealt to the Rays) and Jurickson Profar (later scratched for the season) also came up. It’s not clear from the report what kind of scenarios were considered. Looking forward, it remains to be seen whether there will be any consideration given this winter to a deal involving the 27-year-old righty. Strasburg’s value is down, due both to an inconsistent 2015 season and to the fact that he now has only one season left before hitting free agency, but it’s still hard to imagine the Nats letting him go unless the return was rather significant.
  • The Braves could line up a pursuit of outfielder Yoenis Cespedes in free agency, a source tells Rosenthal. While it’s not hard to see the appeal — he’s a power bat at a position of need, and could line up with the team’s timetable for contention — such a move would still rate as a surprise. Atlanta only just got out from under the ill-fated Melvin Upton contract, which showed the risk of such a free agent signing given the team’s recent payroll restrictions, and Cespedes could well cost twice or more what Upton did ($75MM).
  • Early returns on the summer trade hauls of the Phillies and Brewers have been positive. There is some nice buzz around Philadelphia’s system, especially with all the depth its added in recent months and the intriguing players that came over for Cole Hamels and Jake Diekman. Meanwhile, Milwaukee’s return for Carlos Gomez and Mike Fiers has looked rather compelling, with Domingo Santana raking in his early MLB action and the trio of other players finishing strong at Double-A. (Remember: the key player in that deal, Brett Phillips, joined the MLBTR Podcast just after being swapped, as did righty Zach Davies, who is now in the big leagues after being acquired for Gerardo Parra.)
  • Mets VP of player development and scouting Paul DePodesta has been plugging away at that post for five years, and the fruits of his labors are now showing at the big league level. Rosenthal reports that the former Dodgers general manager “would consider returning to a GM’s role” with another organization, if the circumstances were right, though many still believe he’ll ultimately take over in New York for Sandy Alderson at some point.

Mets Notes: DePodesta, Rotation, Collins

The Mets will try to slow the Cardinals' bid for a playoff berth when the two teams take the field in St. Louis tonight. In the meantime, here are some Mets-related links… 

  • Mets executive Paul DePodesta told Bill Plaschke of the LA Times that he doesn't particularly want to become a general manager again. "From my perspective, it's not necessarily a great job," he said. DePodesta was the Dodgers’ GM in 2004 and 2005.
  • GM Sandy Alderson said on last night's TV broadcast that he expects to have a similar rotation next season, according to Michael Baron of MetsBlog. Alderson is hoping for growth from Mike Pelfrey and Jonathon Niese and Baron is hoping that the rotation will go deeper into games.
  • Alderson says that if the Mets make changes to spacious Citi Field for next year they won't be subtle, according to Andrew Keh of the New York Times. The Mets are interested in making the three-year-old park more fair and Alderson knows that "offense sells."
  • It doesn’t appear that the Mets are going to sign manager Terry Collins to an extension in the near future, according to Jon Heyman of The skipper is under contract in 2012 and the Mets have a team option for 2013.

Mets Notes: Reyes, Einhorn, DePodesta

A few items of note regarding the Amazin's as they take on the Marlins at Citi Field:

  • In the wake of the announcement that the Mets' partial sale to David Einhorn fell through, Adam Rubin of wonders whether the Mets will be able to re-sign impending-free-agent shortstop Jose Reyes. The Mets' payroll is expected to be somewhere around $110MM in 2012, with $55MM already tied up in the combined salaries of Johan Santana, Jason Bay and David Wright.
  • The Wilpons, the Mets' majority owners, interpreted Einhorn's interest in seeking pre-approval to become controlling partner five years from now as a sign of his true intent, according to Jon Heyman of The deal was never a good one for the Mets, opines Heyman, who adds that a partnership is bound to fail when one side of it is banking on the failure of the other (Twitter links). I think Jon's on the mark with that.
  • Mets vice president of player development and amateur scouting Paul DePodesta has come a long way from his portrayal in the book Moneyball as a number-crunching sabermetrician, writes Tom Krasovic of Inside the Padres. I strongly recommend this piece, as Krasovic does a nice job depicting DePodesta's balancing act between evaluating numbers and old-school scouting.

Heyman On Cliff Lee, Mets, Penny

SI's Jon Heyman dishes the latest on the hot stove…

  • Heyman provides reasons why he sees the Yankees as the favorite to sign Cliff Lee: their revenue, rotation question marks, and lack of a backup plan chief among them.  He also talked to Lee's agent Darek Braunecker about the story about Lee's wife being harassed by Yankees fans at a game.  Braunecker said, "That story was blown out of proportion.  It's not like she's hypersensitive. She's been with him in Philadelphia and all over, been with him from the get-go. It really was that one time, just a couple clowns…probably intoxicated. I don't know if that will have any bearing on (the decision)."
  • Heyman predicts destinations for 15 of the top free agents; nothing crazy.
  • Padres GM Jed Hoyer draws praise for being upfront about not being able to sign Adrian Gonzalez.
  • New Mets GM Sandy Alderson will be paid close to $3MM, while Paul DePodesta will get close to $1MM.  With J.P. Ricciardi, Wayne Krivsky, and Omar Minaya also on the ledger, Heyman figures this is baseball's most expensive front office.
  • Heyman feels that the Mets "would likely avoid" allowing Francisco Rodriguez to finish 55 games in 2011, which would trigger his $17.5MM option for '12.  He also notes that the Mets "will wait to see Jose Reyes play a large chunk of this coming season before getting serious about a long-term deal."  That approach might work, but from Reyes' point of view if he's having a great year and is months away from free agency he might as well go to the open market.
  • It's a little early for "best shape of his life" reports, but that's the word on free agent righty Brad Penny.  The 32-year-old was limited to nine starts this year due to a lat muscle injury.

Mets Hire Paul DePodesta

The Mets hired Paul DePodesta as their new vice president of player development and amateur scouting, tweets SNY's Brad Como.  DePodesta had been working for the Padres since '06.  Before that he was the GM of the Dodgers and assistant GM of the Athletics.  DePodesta worked under new Mets GM Sandy Alderson in San Diego and under his protege Billy Beane in Oakland.  With J.P. Ricciardi already on board, the new Mets front office has a Moneyball feel to it.

Rosenthal’s Full Count Video: Indians Manager, Johnson, Padres GM, Crawford, Mauer

Ken Rosenthal of has a new Full Count video up this afternoon, so let's see what he's got for us…

  • The Indians plan to conduct 8-10 phone interviews for their managerial vacancy, then bring in 3-5 finalists by the third week of October, presumably for formal interviews. Bobby Valentine will be "on the short list," and will almost certainly get an interview. Buck Showalter will not be a candidate.
  • Cleveland is proceeding with the search as if Red Sox pitching coach John Farrell will not be a candidate, however that could change quickly if Farrell expresses interest in the job. At that point, the three parties involved would need to discuss a way around the clause in the Farrell's contract that prohibits him from seeking a managerial job elsewhere.
  • Signing Josh Johnson long-term is the Marlins' top priority this offseason. In order to get a deal done, Florida will need to "exceed significantly" the four year, $38MM deal the Royals gave Zack Greinke, who was at a similar service time level last offseason.
  • If a deal doesn't get done, Johnson will almost certainly not sign an extension next offseason, when he'd be just one year away from free agency. At that point, the Fish would need to trade him.
  • Who will replace Kevin Towers as Padres GM? Paul DePodesta, a special assistant to Towers and former GM of the Dodgers, is not interested in the job. Pat Gillick doesn't figure to be a candidate either.
  • The leading candidate might be Diamondbacks' exec Jerry DiPoto, but the Padres would need approval from the commissioner's office to get him. CEO Jeff Moorad left the D-Backs just last December, and the league frowns upon executives raiding their former teams for front office talent.
  • However, DiPoto has already interviewed for openings with the Nationals and Mariners, so it would be difficult for the D-Backs to make much of a fuss.
  • Carl Crawford is "well intentioned" when he says he wants to sign a long-term extension with Tampa Bay. The problem is that the team probably won't offer him enough to keep him from becoming a free agent at the end of 2010.
  • The bigger question is Joe Mauer, who can also hit free agency next winter. Mauer told The NY Times earlier this week that he is not interested in becoming the highest paid player in the game, even though he probably deserves to be. He is represented by Ron Shapiro, the same agent that kept Cal Ripken Jr. in Baltimore and Kirby Puckett in Minnesota. Shapiro clearly understands the value of a player staying with one team his entire career.
  • Shapiro, father of Indians GM Mark Shapiro, would be "sticking it to his son" a bit by keeping Mauer in the AL Central. That's my phrase, not Rosenthal's.

Paul DePodesta’s Arbitration Primer

Paul DePodesta posted a very straightforward primer on the arbitration process on his blog this evening. In addition to explaining the process quite clearly, it underscores the extent to which both parties in a given case are usually interested in resolving things amicably.

No word on whether any of the 111 players who filed for arbitration this year – or any of the teams or players listed in our Arbitration Figures post – will be swayed by the primer or its sentiment.

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Padres Notes: DePodesta, Zduriencik

A few Padres non-Peavy notes from Tom Krasovic of the San Diego Union-Tribune

  • Padres exec Paul DePodesta doesn’t have any interest in the upcoming Moneyball movie.  I hadn’t realized that DePo appeared in a few episodes of the excellent "Homicide: Life On The Street" TV show back in the day.
  • Padres GM Kevin Towers is a longtime friend of new Mariners GM Jack Zduriencik.  Perhaps the Padres and Brewers will be frequent trade partners for Zduriencik.

Several Teams Could Have New GMs In ’09

A few articles today take a look at some GM positions in ’09 that will have new faces…

  • Michael Radano takes a look at who might fill the GM post for the Phillies in ’09. Based on the Phillies current success, Radano wonders if they should just promote from within. That would mean one of the team’s assistant GMs, Mike Arbuckle and Ruben Amaro Jr. Both Arbuckle and Amaro have interviewed with other teams for open GM positions in the past.
  • Rick Freeman takes a look at the names most likely to end up as the GM in Seattle (John Hart, Gerry Hunsicker, Kevin Towers, Kim Ng) and the Phillies (Hunsicker, Arbuckle, Amaro Jr) noting that Hunsicker was the leading candidate for the same post three years ago prior to the hiring of Pat Gillick. He also notes that Kevin Towers will not likely be kept from interviewing with other teams this time around and Ned Colletti could be gone if the Dodgers miss the playoffs. Among the GMs that Freeman believes will remain with their current teams are Brian Sabean, Brian Cashman and Theo Epstein, the latter two of whom are in the final year of their respective contracts.
  • A blogger interviewed Paul DePodesta. The Padres assistant General Manager sounds like somebody that has no interest in becoming a GM for another organization, saying "I think I’ve moved around enough and when you land in a place like San Diego there isn’t much incentive to leave. The reality is that I came here for a number of reasons, both professional (the people who work here) and personal (my wife’s family), so unless those things change I would like to stay here as long as they’ll have me." DePodesta may be waiting for Towers to move to another organization.

Cork Gaines writes for and can be reached here.

Odds and Ends: Millwood, Posey, Igawa

Here’s the latest link collection.

  • Former Dodgers GM Paul DePodesta is now blogging for the public.  He currently works for the Padres as Special Assistant for Baseball Operations.
  • In his words, Kevin Millwood felt a stabbing pain even though he hadn’t been stabbed.  He’s on the shelf with a groin injury, taking him off the trade market temporarily.
  • Rays Index had some quality draft links yesterday about the Rays and their #1 pick.  Jim Callis of Baseball America says catcher Buster Posey is "the current favorite."
  • Joel Sherman wonders what might’ve been if the Yankees had signed Ted Lilly instead of Kei Igawa.
  • Ken Davidoff reminds us of the Padres’ past claim on Igawa, and also notes Boston’s interest.
  • Giants owner Peter Magowan may move on.
  • This email exchange between Dan Graziano of the Newark Star-Ledger and Carlos Delgado‘s agent David Sloane is entertaining.
  • Here’s a valuable free agent to consider: Leo Mazzone.