The Diamondbacks continued a massive organizational overhaul today, firing GM Dave Stewart and manager Chip Hale after previously parting ways with VP DeJon Watson. Chief Baseball Officer Tony La Russa remains with the team at this point, but as MLB.com’s Steve Gilbert reports, he’ll no longer run the team’s baseball operations department.
A new decisionmaker — whether a president of baseball operations, general manager, or both — will take over the reins in molding the team’s roster. At this point, it’s not known when or how the organization will go about filling the void, but president and CEO Derrick Hall says that the new hire will be expected to put greater emphasis on analytics.
Statistical analysis was one of several areas that observers have cited in criticizing the most recent iteration of the D-Backs’ oft-changing front office mix. La Russa was brought on as CBO in hopes that he’d oversee a successful organizational decisionmaking structure, but things haven’t turned out as hoped (as detailed in the post on the firing of Stewart and Hale). In the statistical arena, La Russa has been openly skeptical of the role of analytics, and raised many eyebrows with his hiring of long-time acquaintance — and first-time baseball front office man– Ed Lewis as director of baseball analytics and research.
Arizona’s top brass — Hall, who just inked an eight-year extension, and managing general partner Ken Kendrick — claimed a share of the responsibility for the failings. But they suggested that it was necessary “to turn the page and hit reset and see if we can’t get going in the right direction,” as Hall put it, by starting fresh with a new GM and manager. Per Kendrick, the organization “did not see the trend line at present moving in the right direction.”
Whether La Russa will be a part of the reshaped front office is an open question that was apparently not fully resolved in a lengthy meeting this morning (as Jon Heyman of Fan Rag notes on Twitter). Talks will continue as to what, if any, role may make sense for the Hall of Fame manager, whose foray into the D-Backs’ front office was his first in that capacity.
Wow, best day of the season for the Diamondback fans is the first day after the regular season.
They should make October 3rd a holiday in the state of Arizona after todays firings.
Should have known this guy wouldn’t go down easy. TLR is probably looking for an exit on his terms rather than accepting blame for the mess he helped create.
Ok Tony – time to hold up your end of the bargain. If you don’t step down voluntarily, you are a major hypocrite and your word is as good as your front office ability. Time to go.
Enough already, go get a guy who knows how to build an org. And win, Colletti
Colletti was a bad gm lol
Check the #’s gm and compare what he has done to the rest and you are the determining factor?
Put him to manage the team in the dugout not the front office.
Have him scan tickets that might be more his speed.
You can hear the Diamondbacks fans cheering these moves all the way out here in San Diego.
Wonder where he goes now? He won’t end his career like this, he’s too stubborn and egotistical.
LaRussa will ne the new manager of the D Backs!
Wish The Cardinals would fire Matheny & Go Out & Get A Real Manager! Would Love To See LaRussa manage the Cardinals Again!
He is a senile old man who is living in the past. The diamondbacks would be stupid to hire him as a manager so they probably will
LaRussa looks tired in his picture. Maybe he’s been losing sleep because he knew this day would come eventually.
New Law Era
Is it that crazy to speculate if TLR is given an opportunity to return to the dugout as the Snakes manager?
Or…let’s take it a step further. Do the Cardinals give serious consideration to bringing TLR back to the organization in some front office capacity or potentially as a manager?
It’ll be interesting to see what happens.
New Law Era
May have answered my own question. Still skeptical,
Cardinals should bring him back as Manager, Matheny is horrible! But my first thought was D Backs make him manager!
That would be perfect he can destroy another team
LaRussa has a less than chilly relationship with the Cardinal front office I believe. Matheny isnt going anywhere. Im not sure what Cardinal fans are expecting.
Rumor goes that TLR has them locked in a room with a machete. He goes out on his terms or they all go out.
I think Mozelack and Matheney and hitting coach John Manry plus pitching coach Derrick Lilliquist would make a good fit for the Diamondbacks! According to the Cardinals ownership, Moz has built a strong organization. The Cardinals could fill from within. Michael Girsch as GM, Oquendo as Manager. Chris Carpenter as pitching coach, and Matt Holliday as a player/hitting Coach for next year and just the hitting coach after that. At least that would be a Cardinals fans dream coaching staff and GM.
Nothing wrong with Matheney as the manager. The blame should be put squarely where it belongs. The players themselves. The pitchers were bad. The defense was awful. The base running was horrible. Starting pitching not good. Only had a couple of reliable relievers. Very easy to blame the manager but it was clearly the players fault this year.
Hopefully this doesn’t push La Russa to another DUI
I think TLR must have the only key to a particular room, or still has a credit card, or something. He has to go. Interesting how Watson and Stewart were treated compared to La Russa.
I do not understand why LaRussa is hanging around. Didn’t he say previously that IF Stewart was fired he would leave as well?
Jay fan since 77
Probably waiting to see if this week’s payroll check clears!
Jay fan since 77
Barry Bonds is available!
Themed…. Let me explain about Mike Mathaney. When he got the job I was working with a Missouri Radio station. I interviewed Mathaney many many times. Many of his former teammates were still on the team. Mike is a good person. I mean that…..but he needs a change in scenery. Just as several others of his staff does. He doesn’t want to hurt his friends feelings by taking Wainwright out in the 2nd inning, not letting Holliday bat 3rd, not letting Carpenter bat first, pitching relief pitchers that aren’t effective game after game because that is their inning. And playing players that had contributed in the past but had physical problems and couldn’t play to that top caliber anymore. The GM has had to trade Allen Craig for that reason, along with others because he’d refuse to bench them until they work out their problems or healed physically. The teams administration has scolded him for this time after time. He knows better, but his heart won’t tell them
No. In another setting, where his close friends aren’t on the team, he will be fine. But not with the existing players on the Cardinals. The tail is wagging the dog in his case right now and they are spinning down hill and talent him with them.
I propose a trade: The Diamondbacks Chief Baseball Officer Tony La Russa to the White Sox for their highest ranking baseball official, Executive Vice President Kenny Williams.
It seems to me, both would benefit from a change of scenery with La Russa returning to the city in which he began his managerial career. He and White Sox owner Jerry Reinsdorf have remained good friends throughout and La Russa would pretty much be guaranteed a job for life as a White Sox front office executive.
The article says they want new leadership with a focus on analytics. Why, then, would they put the dinosaur La Russa in the dugout where he would just ignore/push back against the new analytics guy?? Doesn’t make sense