Artist’s rendition of AA if he’d started growing a beard at the time he fucking knew he needed a manager.
Alex Anthopoulos isn’t in any kind of rush to hire a new manager, apparently. So says the GM himself according to the latest at Sportsnet from Shi Davidi.
“We’ll pick it back up after the GM meetings,” Anthopoulos told him of the manager search. “You can’t force the process or rush the process.”
Um… you can’t?
I’m pretty sure you totally could, Alex. Though I do grasp the subtext, which is that this is a ridiculously important hire for the club, and for Anthopoulos himself.
Stephen Brunt discussed it on the Fan 590 last week in a segment I can’t remember whether or not I posted about, suggesting– and not for the first time– that Rogers looks at Anthopoulos as a guy who may one day move into Paul Beeston’s role as President of the club, but that it would present a major problem to that planned arc if this whole thing goes tits up.
Well, maybe Brunt didn’t say it in so many words, but the point stands: a GM only gets to fire so many mangers before he becomes the target himself– a truism JP Ricciardi was particularly good at working around, though it did eventually get him in the end.
So yes, the hire absolutely has to be a solid one– or as Anthopoulos confusingly and infuriatingly vaguely put it:
“You’re trying to get the perfect player, the perfect manager, the perfect GM and so on, which the reality of it is that won’t exist. To simplify things, it’s more who is the right fit for this organization, this city, this country, this front office, this ownership group, these players. That’s really what it comes down to, rather than some of the other things that we like to check off all the boxes that you look for.”
But I’m pretty sure there’s also something to be said about having a staff in place as you begin looking to lure free agents.
Obviously Anthopoulos doesn’t agree– or doesn’t think we’re deep enough into the free agent process to worry about it– though Darren from Extra Base Hit makes the excellent point that the relationship between then-Jays pitching coach Brad Arnsberg and AJ Burnett was instrumental in landing Pete Puma here in Toronto. So, at least in my view, it’s not entirely a non-issue.
At the same time, it is what it is, and the Jays are going to keep going forward at a glacial pace– well… at least until Joe Torre relents and accepts the gig.
OK, that’s very probably not what’s going on– though, as Darren points out, “it was reported before the Red Sox hired John Farrell that Joe Torre was considering managing in Boston,” and “he loves Toronto, and he is friends with Jays President Paul Beeston”– but a guy can dream of a choice that won’t cause the fucking peanut gallery to explode with venom, can’t he?
I hesitate to even bring it up, frankly, but… whatever. It wouldn’t be the first time the fans in this city set themselves up to have their astronomically high hopes dashed. Shit, with some of the talk I’ve heard about what the Jays have to do in free agency this winter, I don’t think it’d be the last, either.
Original image via The Grid