Epstein to GM Cubs, Angels Still Looking


Tampa Bay GM Andrew Friedman has turned the Rays into perennial playoff contenders. Imagine what he could do in Anaheim. (Getty Images)

My colleague Kalup Alexander has done a fine job on this blog keeping us abreast of the Angels continued search for an General Manager to replace the deposed Tony Reagins. In his post today, Kalup addressed the team’s interest in Jerry Dipoto and Damon Oppenheimer. With top candidate Theo Epstein leaving Boston and signing a 5 year/$20 million deal to similarly resurrect the woeful Cubs, LAA now has to cross his name from prospective candidates. The move also puts the Red Sox at the top of any potential GM’s bucket list. Even if Boston gets their pick of the litter, there are still numerous front office execs that can steer the Angels in the right direction. Kalup offered up Dipoto and Oppenheimer. Here are ten more after the jump:

  • Al Avila- Working under Tigers GM Dave Dombrowski, Avila has had his hand in deals that have brought Austin Jackson, Max Scherzer, Jose Valverde, Victor Martinez and Doug Fister to the Motor City. It’s no wonder the Tigers are currently in the ALCS. Dombrowski builds winners where ever he goes, and his protege just may have a similar touch. He certainly knows how to make a deal. It wouldn’t hurt if he brought his son, All-Star Tiger catcher Alex Avila, to help cure the Angels catching woes either.
  • Billy Beane- Handcuffed by a lack of revenue in Oakland, Beane’s talents as GM are well-documented. The subject of Michael Lewis’ Moneyball may want to finally jump to a team with money if his A’s can’t get a new stadium deal. Beane has expressed interest in returning to his Southern California roots in the past, so why not Hollywood? After all, it worked for his on-screen doppelganger Brad Pitt. Beane wouldn’t have traded for Vernon Wells either, so that’s a plus.
  • Ben Cherington- The current front-runner for the Red Sox vacancy, Cherington was (is?) Theo Epstein’s right hand man. While in Boston he was part of the front office that made the trades for Josh Beckett and Adrian Gonzalez with prospects he helped draft and develop. Then again, he was also around for the Carl Crawford, Daisuke Matsuzaka and John Lackey signings. Maybe free agents aren’t his thing, but drafting and developing young talent is. I offer Dustin Pedroia, Jacoby Ellsbury, Clay Buchholz and Justin Masterson as evidence. If it’s time for him to run the show rather than follow Epstein to Chicago, Cherington would be welcome on the West Coast. Just keep him away from the checkbook.
  • David Frost- If Beane’s ownership stake in the A’s keeps him from leaving Oakland, perhaps his underling Frost would be willing to leave for greener (redder?) pastures.
  • Andrew Friedman- No one has been better in the front office the past five years than Friedman. Look at what he’s done with drafting and developing in Tampa: Evan Longoria, James Shields, David Price, Ben Zobrist, Jeremy Hellickson, Desmond Jennings, and Matt Moore to name a few. Friedman lets potentially bad contracts walk elsewhere (Carl Crawford), trades strengths for needs (Matt Garza for Sam Fuld, Edwin Jackson for Matt Joyce) and has a knack for bringing in contributing mid-level free agents for one and two year deals (Johnny Damon, Kelly Shoppach). He has an eye for pitching and defense, values old school scouting AND sabrmetric data, and his players fit the mold of a Mike Scoscia team. Current Rays manager and Fansided.com AL Manager of the Year, Joe Maddon, brought a similar style to Tampa when he left Anaheim. It’s time for the Rays to return the favor and let the Angels talk to Friedman. If I’m Arte Moreno (spoiler alert: I’m not) this is who I bring in. And I let him name his price.
  • Dan Jennings- Jennings is another man with a plan that just needs money to work with. As Florida’s assistant GM, Jennings is a keen Latin American scout and can find pitchers at the bottom of the ocean. Keeping them healthy is another story.
  • Thad Levine-What better way to bring down the enemy than from within? Assistant Rangers GM Thad Levine has executive skills that are praised throughout the league. Bringing him to Anaheim strengthens and stabilizes the Angel front office while putting a chink in Texas’s seemingly dynastic armor.
  • John McLeod-The assistant GM in San Diego was also in Boston during the resurgence of Red Sox Nation. McLeod helped draft Ellsbury, Masterson and Buchholz. Having worked in a major market before and currently just south of LA, McLeod is a natural- albeit unspectacular- fit.
  • Kim Ng- Speaking of Southern California former Los Angeles assistant GM Kim Ng made her name as the highest ranking female executive in male sports. Ng was very well respected in her time with the cross-town Dodgers, so much so that she parlayed her position into the front offices of Major League Baseball where she is now the Senior Vice President of Baseball Operations. Why she would leave her post to be a GM is beyond me, but if she is up for the challenge then Anaheim could make a gender barrier splash by bringing her in.
  • Logan White- White is currently with the Dodgers and as their assistant GM is one of the men responsible for drafting the likely MVP and Cy Young winners, Matt Kemp and Clayton Kershaw. It’s not his fault the rest of LA’s other time is a mess. What better time for him to skip to the other side of town? At least he’d be guaranteed a paycheck.

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Tags: Adrian Gonzalez Al Avila Alex Avila Andrew Friedman Austin Jackson Ben Cherington Ben Zobrist Billy Beane Brad Pitt Carl Crawford Clay Buchholz Clayton Kershaw Daisuke Matsuzaka Dan Jennings David Frost David Price Desmond Jennings Doug Fister Dustin Pedroia Edwin Jackson Evan Longoria General Manager Jacoby Ellsbury James Shields Jeremy Hellickson Joe Maddon John Lackey John McLeod Johnny Damon Jose Valverde Josh Beckett Justin Masterson Kelly Shoppach Kim Ng Logan White Los Angeles Angels Matt Garza Matt Joyce Matt Kemp Matt Moore Max Scherzer Michael Lewis Mike Scoscia Moneyball Sam Fuld Thad Levine Tony Reagins Vernon Wells Victor Martinez