Friday, November 07, 2014

Welcome to the Blue, Josh Byrnes!

It is now official.  Not only did the Dodgers hire A's Assistant GM Farhan Zaidi to be their General Manager, but they also hired former Padres and Diamondbacks GM Josh Byrnes to be the Senior Vice President of Baseball Operations.  Check out my previous 'Welcome' post for Zaidi here.

Per a Dodgers press release:
"It is very exciting for us to be able to add two exceptional, veteran baseball executives like Farhan and Josh," said Dodger President of Baseball Operations Andrew Friedman. "Farhan's primary focus will be the Major League team and player acquisitions while Josh will concentrate on the oversight of scouting and player development. However, they will both work closely with me on all aspects of baseball operations in our efforts to make the Dodgers' front office and team the best it can possibly be."
As the GM of the Padres he made some key trades that hasn't really turned out so well; including trading away Anthony Rizzo to the Cubs for starting pitcher Andrew Cashner.  Although, Cashner is a very good pitcher.  It's just that Rizzo may prove to be much more of an impact player.  He also dealt Mat Latos to the Reds for infielder Yasmani Grandal, catcher Yonder Alonso, and right-handers Edinson Volquez and Brad Boxberger. 

As a GM for the Diamondbacks I suggest taking a look at a series of post by Dan Strittmatter at the AZ Snake Pit blog.  He put together 2 part post (Part 1 & Part 2) focused on, "A Retrospective Look at the Trade History of Josh Byrnes."  Also, Brendan Bianowicz at MLB Trade Runors shares a spreadsheet featuring a history of trades, signings and draft picks under Byrnes as the DBacks GM, here.  As you'll notice, he traded future-ace starting pitcher Max Scherzer (who he drafted) for a Edwin Jackson and Ian Kennedy.

I guess you can say that I'm happy we're getting a smart front office guy with significant experience, but weary about his past trades.  Who am I kidding though, getting another brain is never a bad thing, so I'm happy to have him as a part of the team.  If Friedman and Zaidi can really foster a free-wheeling collaborate approach to management, then Byrnes addition should be a net positive.

In celebration of Byrne's arrival to the Dodgers I made the above fantasy card for him.  I used a photograph grabbed from a photo from an SI article (Photo: Lenny Ignelzi/AP) and the 1962 Topps Baseball card design.

More from the Dodgers press release:
Byrnes, 44, will supervise the Dodgers' scouting and player development operations after previously serving as executive vice president/general manager for two of the Dodgers' NL West rivals, the Diamondbacks (Oct. 2005-July 2010) and Padres (Oct. 2011-June 2014).

He began his front office career in 1994 with the Indians, working as an advance scout in 1995 and 1996 before being promoted to Director of Scouting in June 1998. In the fall of 1999, Byrnes became assistant general manager of the Rockies and moved to the Red Sox in the same role for the 2003-05 seasons, helping Boston to the 2004 World Series title.

Originally from Washington, D.C., Byrnes attended Haverford College in Pennsylvania, where he established school career records in home runs and RBI. He and his wife, Charity, have two daughters, Avery and Darby.

* Please follow on twitter @ernestreyes *
* Dodgers Blue Heaven home page *

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