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.”

Um… OK?

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

Comments (75)

  1. So.. there’s there.

  2. From a PR perspective, I feel like hiring Joe Torre would instantly wash away the bad smell from the Farrell saga, and totally change the narrative. I think Francona would have been the same.

    Watch it be Tracy or Riggleman though.

    • I think even with my knowledge of how little a manager effects a team’s record, I’d be fuckin happy with Torre. Might be able to bring some players in on him alone.

  3. What’s the rush? have some tea habibi

  4. Is there any reason to actually believe Joe Torre is a good manager? And please, if you’re going to remind me how many rings he has, I’m going to remind you that Cito Gaston already works in our front office and is always available to manage in a pinch.

    • There totally isn’t. At all.

      But it’d shut up the media trolls, he’d garner immediate respect in the clubhouse, and if there’s a relationship with Beeston, maybe it could hit the criteria Alex says he’s looking for.

      I’m not saying I want it, and I’m even less certain he’d be interested, but there are definitely reasons why it might be something– and if Rogers was going to pony up some money to buy back goodwill in this city, that’s about as efficient a way to do it as possible.

      • Although he is getting up there in years…72ish I believe.

      • Interesting point Stoeten, bu didn’t you make a convincing case that Managers don’t affect outcomes as much as we think?

        If the Jays are going to hire a 72 year old manager, why not bring back a youngish Cito at 68??

        I don;t advocate this move but I would be shocked if AA brought back any 60 year old + manager.

        Would an experienced manager take AA seriously??

        I wonder why AA didn’t fire Farrell & get Francona ASAP if he knew that Farrell wanted to go to Boston last year??

        That is a mystery worth exploring.

        Jays fans would love Francona & would quickly forget Farrell.

        Jays would get an automatic 9 game sellout against the rd sox plus get MLB attention quickly.

        Francona vs Farrell.

  5. Pffft. Managers. Do it by committee!

  6. Im fuckin baffled a manager wont be named before the winter meetings. Fuckin baffled I mean fuck the writing was on the wall with Farrel for some time before he eventually fucked off.
    Perhaps he has his guy in mind but is waiting on a yes or no answer from him. I realize thats far fetched but his last hiring which was termed an extensive search didnt take this fuckin long.

  7. I am presently incarcerated, imprisoned for a crime I did not even commit! “Attempted murder,” now honestly, did they ever give anyone a Nobel prize for “attempted chemistry?”

  8. They should hire Tommy Lee Jones and ask him to stay in character for the whole season, pistol whipping anyone who get’s out of line.
    “Come on in here and meet….. The Great Ty Cobbbb”

  9. If AA and James Harden had a child, the result is above.

  10. I hear Gretzky has always had an interest in baseball. Let’s hire him too. Good will galore.

  11. Are the Jays really a fit for Torre? The Jays are a fairly young(ish) team and looking back at Torre’s most recent managerial jobs with the Cardinals, Yankees and Dodgers, those were much more veteran (and talented) teams than the Blue Jays. Maybe he’d be interested in molding and refining a young team, but at 72 years old how long is he going to stick around?

  12. AA’s willingness to let the Manager search drag on indicates he’s intent on patching up the club through trades, not free agency. As the Pete Puma signing shows, coaching staff can in fact impact a free agent’s willingness to sign with a specific team. A traded player (unless he must waive no-trade rights) has no say in his to-be destination. I suspect that AA is ambivalent about the timing because it does not impinge on the route he plans to take in improving the MLB roster for 2013.

    • Or as Stoeten said above, maybe it’s a couple of weeks too early for any real signings yet. Considering it’s usually in a players best interests to field as many offers as possible and potentially play one team against another for his services, there really is no rush for a lot of them quite yet.

      • Problem I have is that if there is one team in MLB that needs to take advantage of early “wining and dining” of FAs, its the Jays.

        • @Tom.

          Agreed. AA seems to be behind the curve.

          However, he gets the benefit of the doubt till April 2 2013, opening day.

  13. Maybe the Jays needed a dose of this:

    Pity Trey Wilson, the actor who played the manager, passed away. He probably would have made a great manager lol

    • Weird…was just watching Miller’s Crossing on Saturday when I found out he died (while that movie was in preproduction). Always figured he was at least 55 in Bull Durham.

  14. Stoeten, why do you say in one article that Jays fans are too damn pessimistic about who the Jays will land (last winter) which as it turns out people had every right to be, and now that people (rightly) are hoping that they get some better pitchers and a decent bat or two you’re saying everyone’s expectations are astronomically high. As a fan you always hope your favourite team should/will improve. What’s wrong with that? It’s called being a fan. And people should be rightly disappointed if those acquisitions don’t happen. When an effort isn’t made to win, then fans stop giving a fuck, as they should.

    • @Frank the Cat

      Very good point.

      I suppose that the word fan is derived from the word fanatic. It is illogical to spend hours per day watching newswires or internet postings for the latest Jays news.

      There is excitement in being the first to speculate on any developments.

      Will the Jays surprise us?

      I remember seeing the trade of Wells when I was in the Bahamas in Jan 2011 & was shocked.

      I wonder if AA will shock us again.

      We know for certain that AA will have a manager by opening Day.

  15. Pray tell, which orifice did “Torre loves Toronto and is good friends with Beeston” come out of? How did Darren acquire this hot scoop? The only thing that I can find about Torre and Toronto is this quote:

    “It’s ridiculous,” Torre said after the game. “Some of the videos they have period, it’s all about violence. There are certain cities, one of our players gets knocked down and they start laughing and cheering. I don’t understand it.”

  16. That picture is HILARIOUS

    Also, sign me up on the Torre train, pay the old fuck 10 million bucks, I dont care.

    • Im sure every blue jay fan would welcome Torre with open arms. At the same time I just dont see it happening. I believe for any manager at the age of 72 there would have to be some history with him and the organization of some kind to fullfill the necessary incentive to take on managing. Especially when youve already won it all and dont need money. And I dont see any connection or history here even if he is budz with BEESTON.

      But heres to hoping

      • Oh i have no idea if its a viable idea or not. I just think it would solve all the problems that the yuppies deem important.

  17. hurricane sandy was caused by obama. vote for me and I will make all huricanes illegal

  18. Not to piss on Davidi’s article or anything…but the trick to forming a great friendship and working relationship between manager and GM is for some continuity that extends more than 2 or 3 years. Most of the great sports franchises (dare I use “dynasties”) is that there is stability in the front office and in the manager’s position. Players know that. Other organizations know that. It’s easier to make deals because you’re not dealing with an unfamiliar quantity…you’re dealing with a guy you’ve known and worked with for a decade or so.
    So many teams turf the manager, or change front office personnel after a dismal year because….well, assholes like us, or the knobs on the sports-talk shows are screaming for SOMETHING…ANYTHING to change the team’s fortunes. Maybe I’m talking out of my ass, but having a revolving door in the management department doesn’t have the greatest optics in the world.

  19. I fully support rogers and their low payroll. saving money on payroll will result in higher profits which will make investors richer. these investors will then buy more tickets with their riches and attendance will increase resulting in higher payroll. this is called the trickle down effect.

  20. don’t you need a manager before you construct your team for next year, not only for managerial input on new players, but also to let perspective players know what (who) they’ll be dealing with ?? And i agree w/ someone above …..AA’s known for a fucking year that JF was probably leaving, so why the drama.? And please don’t say due diligence – there was plenty of that for JF, and what good did it do ??

    • Very true.

      It’s amazing that AA was able to hide his feelings for Farrell after he wanted to leave last year. Yet he wanted farrell to stay another year.for 2013??

      Was he hoping to change Farrell’s mind?

      • To be fair to AA, what was he supposed to do?
        No doubt, he went into this past season thinking the team was on the cusp so why change the manager and risk upsetting that? Besides, he couldn’t make a move on Farrell; there was no possible scenario where he could.
        I don’t think he wanted Farrell back in 2013 but that doesn’t indemnify JF for being a turncoat. AA got something for nothing with JF, give him credit for that.
        On the other hand, I question whether AA has what it takes to make the Jays a contender. Whether it’s in the boardroom power-pointing the dire need the team has to the suits or on the field assessing talent, so far; he’s been somewhat lacking.
        He gets another 8 months to prove he’s got it, if the Jays are in 4th place next June; I think it will be fair to say he’s not cut out for the task at hand.

  21. “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.”

    This sure sounds a whole hella like “Is being in Toronto your dream job?”

    I liked one of his first quotes before about having had a manager before, the next one you want A, B and C from a lot more than the above “the right fit” quote.

  22. Maybe its Bobby Cox they are trying to talk out of retirement

  23. Is Yogi Berra still alive? How about Whitey Herzog? Those dudes would make the clubhouse sit up and take notice.

  24. Hoorah for you Stoeten, putting Joe Torre’s name out there. Now we’re gonna have a serious discussion of how good he would be as a manager here. Which? I think it’d be great. But I also think our chances of landing him are slim to none. (But I sure would love to see him here!)

    That having been said, what was that interview AA did with Jeff Blair all about? AA was all ‘I’m gonna go with my gut this time!’ I guess no one he has interviewed has given him the right vibe. Or something. It seems to me that the longer this drags on, the worse it looks for any of the usual suspects to get the job. Maybe AA is working out a manager trade…

  25. By the way, you know that post you did about maybe they’re waiting for a mystery candidate. I’ve been saying that for days…

  26. That’s not a picture of AA with a beard, that’s Fidel Castro. Oh wait, I get it. You’re trying to insinuate that Ozzie Guillen will be the next manager. Very clever.

  27. I find it funny that most of the people who say Managers dont really matter…including Stoeten…look like they never played on a competitive team EVER in their entire life…and i dont mean no house league or beer league shit. It’s very laughable that mofos really believe that managers dont do anything lol…yeah cause Phil Jackson just sat there. Idiots.

    • Hmm. I don’t know if Stoeten has ever played baseball competitively, but that should not preclude him from offering commentary.

      I think the “managers don’t matter” theory comes from sabremetrics???

      • What do nerds know about sports? I think that was his point and, I agree with him. The fact is, things work the way they do for a reason; saber-nerds are guilty of hubirs. Presuming to understand something they have never experienced and rudely denying the worth of the work that preceded them. Managers don’t matter…everyone is stupid except for those that agree with me.
        Stoeten’s entitled to his opinion and I do enjoy reading his work even while mostly disagreeing with him, most of the time.
        Cito Gaston rules fuckfaces.

        • Amen. This notion around here that managers don’t make much difference is nonsense.

          Anyone who’s actually played sports ought to know this. And frankly the same holds true in most organizations/work enivronments.

          Good managers get the most out of their teams and then some, whereas bad managers can hobble teams and lead them to underachieving.

  28. When is this asshole going to get some fucking balls. I am so sick of AA’s cryptic attitude, seriously… he does he not understand that in order to sign free agents he needs a fucking staff. Fuck sakes… first he gives us all boners by saying he’s going to be aggressive with free agents and now he’s telling us he’s not in a rush to hire a fucking coaching staff….

    Mothermcfuckelstein…… this guy is pissing me the fuck off. GROW SOME FUCKING BALLS!!!! Either make the team better or step down and bring in a GM that has male genitalia and knows how to act like a man.

    • I don’t know about AA’s balls, but it’s absofuckinglutely right that you’re not going to get any free agents, at least not any with options, to sign here until they know who their manager will be. Players actually care about little things like that.

  29. To all those that say a manager doesnt matter…. uhm last I checked yes they do and secondly it’s not JUST a manager its what could be a whole coaching staff depending on who the new manager is and who he wants to bring in. He could walk in and completely clean out the staff. So to those people saying it doesnt matter… if you were a major league star or even a reasonably sought after player and the Jays approached you with no manager would you not feel a little uneasy about it? Most players dont want to play in Canada to begin with nevermind coming to a team that has no defined coaching staff in place.

    • Very good point Buck Martinez.

      No one knows what AA is up to.

      As Brunt said last week, he gets to hire 1 more manager. if the next manager fails or the team bombs over the next 2 or 3 years, AA will be in trouble.

      • AA doesn’t have 2 or 3 years. He has 60% of 1 season left to show what he’s about. If the Jays aren’t showing significant progress by the end next season, AA’s gone-If the Jays still suck and, AA stays; that will serve as proof positive of Rogers complete lack of desire in a winning franchise.

        • @davestieb.

          I think your second point is more likely.

          I can’t see Rogers firing AA in 2013 unless the team wins 50 games & Batista demands a trade publicly.

          Rogers put up with JP Riccardi for years..

          They gave him 75 million extra over 3 years 2006-2008.

          It didn’t work out, so he was fired.

          If they don’t give AA a similar or extra payroll boost, that would be unfair to fire him.

          IMHO, AA gets till end of 2015 before a decision is made on him.

          • I think the difference between AA and JP, if my memory serves me (if) was; JP had a competitive team to protect him. AA doesn’t and so, unless that changes; he doesn’t see 2015 as the GM. AA needs to step up and convince the brass that the $ need to be allocated now. If he can’t do that then who cares if he stays, anyone can GM a 4th place team.

  30. Keep dreaming if you think Joe Torrie is even a possibility

    • Why would anyone dream of an old man thats only proven himself as a manager standing behind teams packed full of superstars with massive salaries? Personally I want nothing to do with him in Toronto.

  31. Mind bending as always. Its definitely making for interesting news seeing as the hockey season is doing its last lap on the porcelain highway.

  32. Btw, nice pic of AA.

  33. Fuck Torre. I want LOUUUUUUUUUUUU!!!!

  34. Mitt Romney for Manager! trim the fat, and probably move the team to India

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