Mets executive Paul DePodesta is leaving the franchise, according to Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports (Twitter link). In fact, he’ll be leaving baseball entirely and will join the NFL’s Cleveland Browns, per Joel Sherman of the New York Post (via Twitter). Cleveland has announced DePodesta’s hiring as its “Chief Strategy Officer.”
DePodesta had served in New York as the VP of player development and amateur scouting. He was considered one of the top advisors to Mets GM Sandy Alderson, and perhaps factored as a long-term GM candidate for the franchise. Both Sherman (via Twitter) and MLB.com’s Anthony DiComo (Twitter links) suggest that he was viewed previously as a potential successor to Alderson. That, obviously, no longer appears to be a likely outcome. As Dicomo adds, New York will need to overhaul its draft approach, as that was one area in which DePodesta exercised broad authority.
The long-time baseball executive served as the Dodgers’ GM in 2004-05, taking on the position at just 31 years of age. Of course, he’s best known for his stint with the Athletics, as depicted in the Moneyball book and film. While those sources are said to present something of a caricature of the man, DePodesta is widely credited for his intelligence and data-saavy approach to the sport.
A graduate of Harvard University, where he played both football and baseball, DePodesta broke into the sports world with a Canadian Football League internship. It wasn’t long thereafter, however, that he earned a chance with the Indians, and he quickly gained a rising profile in the Cleveland front office.
Interestingly, DePodesta is reportedly not the only MLB exec who was pursued by the Browns. The organization also made an offer to former Indians and current Blue Jays president Mark Shapiro before he went to Toronto, per Tony Grossi of ESPNCleveland.com (via Twitter).