Since Sandy Alderson announced that he’d be stepping down as general manager of the Mets due to a recurrence of cancer symptoms, there’s been plenty of chatter as to which direction the Mets will head with their front office. Assistant GM John Ricco and veteran execs J.P. Ricciardi and Omar Minaya have shared Alderson’s duties in the interim, but it seems increasingly likely that the Mets will hire a new permanent GM from outside the organization.
Here’s the latest on their search…
- Mike Puma of the New York Post writes that there’s a disconnect between owner Fred Wilpon and his son, COO Jeff Wilpon, as to what type of executive should be hired to lead the charge. Fred’s preference, according to Puma, would be to hire an experienced front office veteran with roots in scouting and player development, while the younger Wilpon feels the team needs a more analytically inclined mind atop its baseball ops hierarchy. Additionally, it seems that former Mets manager Terry Collins, currently a special assistant, could take on a larger role next season, though he won’t be considered for the actual GM vacancy.
- The Post’s Joel Sherman, meanwhile, wrote recently that the goal for the Mets is to have a list of 10 to 12 candidates by month’s end and to have a new GM in place by the time the annual GM Meetings begin on Nov. 4. Sherman runs through a host of potential names and references the same disconnect as Puma. Blue Jays president Mark Shapiro, former Red Sox GM Ben Cherington (a current Jays exec) and Cardinals director of player development Gary Larocque are a few of names prominently connected to the job. Sherman notes that whoever is ultimately named GM will be hired with the understanding that Minaya will maintain a fair bit of power in terms of player personnel decisions. That, along with the general dysfunction that is largely synonymous with the Wilpon name at this point, will complicate the hiring process.
- Shapiro, for what it’s worth, has downplayed reports connecting him to the Mets and expressed that he remains committed to the Blue Jays organization. SNY’s Andy Martino, though, wrote this morning that in spite of Shapiro’s comments, “people around the team continue to point to” Shapiro as a potential candidate. It’s worth noting that Sherman’s column makes mention of tension between Shapiro and Jays ownership at Rogers Communications, though he’d also be an expensive hire for the Mets. Martino, too, lists Cherington as a name to watch, and he also adds current Orioles GM Dan Duquette to the pile. Duquette, notably, is in the final season of his contract in Baltimore, and there’s been previous speculation as to whether he’ll remain with the club.
- Royals assistant GM Scott Sharp has also had his name come up in numerous reports over the past week (Twitter link via ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick). He’s been with the Royals for more than a decade and has some background in scouting, analytics and business, which could make him somewhat of a compromise between the Wilpons’ disparate preferences, though certainly other candidates would be able to bring a similar combination to the table for the Mets as well.