The Diamondbacks ousted Dave Stewart from the GM seat yesterday, bringing his tenure to an end after just two years. Stewart discussed his feelings on the matter with Bob Nightengale of USA Today, who described the scene yesterday as chief baseball officer Tony La Russa informed his long-time friend that he’d no longer be with the organization.
That order, of course, came from above La Russa’s head, with managing partner Ken Kendrick and president/CEO Derrick Hall deciding it was time to move on. La Russa’s own fate remains to be determined, but he won’t control the organization’s baseball operations any longer.
Stewart expressed little in the way of regret, explaining that he believes he ought to have been retained but also that he will land on his feet. After all, the long-time big league hurler has compiled a rather varied resume following his playing times. Most recently, before heading to Arizona, he served as a player agent.
“Quite frankly,” said Stewart, “I’ve got better things to do.” Just what those things will be isn’t clear yet. “I just got to figure out what to do next,” said Stewart, “but really, I’ll be just fine.”
What Stewart won’t be doing is airing grievances against the Arizona organization. While he acknowledges that he was “angry” when he left the Blue Jays organization 15 years ago after being passed over for an open GM seat, Stewart says that he’s “not angry this time.” Instead, he said, it’s “almost a relief.” And though he and Kendrick “were oil and water,” Stewart says that was just a reflection of personality differences; he does not “have anything bad to say about” the D-Backs owner.
As for the state of the roster and farm that he leaves behind, Stewart expressed optimism. “This team will be back,” he said. “They’re not far away at all.” Asserting that he stands by his work at the helm of the baseball ops department, Stewart suggested that it may take some time for the fruits of his labor to become obvious to the rest of the game. “You may not know it for a couple of years,” he said, “but you will.’’