7:50pm: Baer said in a conference call tonight that the Giants will search for a new head of baseball operations, meaning Sabean will not be in charge of such decisions moving forward, either (Twitter link via Pavlovic). Baer also stated that the team expects Bochy to return as the manager in 2019 (Twitter link via Schulman).
6:50pm: The Giants announced the move and added that Evans will be “reassigned” to a new role with responsibilities that have yet to be determined. Giants CEO Larry Baer offered the following statement:
“I want to thank Bobby for his tireless work on behalf of the Giants. He played an important role in our team’s success throughout his tenure, which includes three World Series championships, four NL pennants and eight playoff appearances. We look forward to new leadership to continue our historic record of success.”
Sabean will not simply be reprising his role atop the team’s operations hierarchy, it seems, as the press release indicates that he’ll work with Baer to find a replacement for Evans.
“I take great pride in the longstanding continuity of our baseball department,” Sabean said in his own statement. “I want to express my thanks to Bobby for all he has given to the Giants over the past 25 years and for his countless contributions.”
6:15pm: Bobby Evans has been removed from his post as the Giants’ general manager, reports Henry Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle. It’s not clear if Evans will remain with the organization in another capacity or look for an opportunity in a new organization, though Schulman adds that he’s expected to be offered another role within the Giants. Alex Pavlovic of NBC Sports Bay Area writes that the move is likely to be the first of many in a major front-office shakeup, though Schulman notes that executive vice president Brian Sabean and manager Bruce Bochy are likely to be retained.
Evans has spent more than two decades with the Giants and played an instrumental role in helping to construct the three rosters that won the 2010, 2012 and 2014 World Series during San Francisco’s “even-year” dynasty. At the time, Evans was the assistant general manager to then-GM Sabean, but in 2015 the organization promoted Sabean to executive vice president and bumped Evans up the chain of command another peg.
Things haven’t gone well since, as San Francisco has been burned by big-money free agent signings (Jeff Samardzija, Johnny Cueto, Mark Melancon) while struggling through a pair of losing seasons. The Giants won only 64 games last season but loaded up on veteran additions in the offseason with an eye toward contending in 2018. Trade acquisitions Andrew McCutchen and Evan Longoria didn’t help the offense in the manner that Evans & Co. had hoped, however. This year’s club did manage to hang around the periphery of contention longer than the 2017 iteration of the Giants — despite myriad injury issues, it should be noted — but ultimately plummeted out of the division race in catastrophic fashion by losing 11 consecutive games.
While the past couple seasons for the Giants have been miserable, Evans should have no trouble finding another opportunity with a different organization if he decides to move on from the Giants. He’s among the game’s most respected executives and would bring a wealth of experience to a new club. It’s worth noting that there is at least one other GM opening that’ll need to be filled, as the Mets are searching for a new head of baseball operations following Sandy Alderson’s departure from the team earlier this summer.