Snapshots from Boca: GMs Speak

As you know, the General Managers meetings are currently taking place in Boca Raton, Florida. I’ve had an opportunity to speak to several of the GMs – I’ll talk to more of them tomorrow – and some of those conversations will be shared here in the coming days. Here are snapshots from four of today’s one-on-ones, and another from a group session held yesterday:


John Coppolella, Braves: “We’re looking at the way John Schuerholz built the Royals and the Braves. We’re looking at the way John Hart built the Indians and the Rangers. They went with young, upside talent. They took long-range views. I think we’re on the same track.

“It was tough for us to trade away Jason Heyward and Justin Upton. We traded them away because they brought us value in the deals. I wish we had Jason Heyward and Justin Upton going forward. If we had $350 million dollars, maybe we could get both of them this offseason. That’s not where were at, at this point in the winning cycle.”

Jerry Dipoto, Mariners: “The philosophy I’m bringing over here is pretty different. I respect Jack Zduriencik – he’s had a wonderful baseball career and I’m sure he’ll continue to have one – but we’ll do things differently than he did. We see things through a different lens.

“Regarding (the Angels), it would be fair to say that this is a different environment.”

Dave Dombrowski, Red Sox: “I’ve always tried to not have untouchables. If you have Miguel Cabrera and he’s the best hitter in the game, and somebody offers you two Miguel Cabreras, you have to be open minded about it… There are some players we have that are much less apt to be dealt than others. I’m not necessarily going to name them.”

Matt Klentak, Phillies: “Philosophically, I am very much of the mind to use all of the information to make every decision that we make. I’m not a huge fan of operating under any sort of absolutes, but I want to make sure that we’re managing all of the information as well as we can.

“We’re in the process of (building an analytics department). I’ve only been on the ground in Philadelphia for about a week, so there’s only so much I could have done do far, but that’s definitely a critical focus for us. We’ve started building (a proprietary system).”

David Stearns, Brewers: “Mark Attanasio, our owner, has given me complete autonomy. During the interview process, I presented my vision of where I thought the Brewers should head, and he agreed with it enough to give me the job.

“I really don’t see a dichotomy between (the analytics and scouting departments). I see them both as information sources where we need the absolute best of both. We’re going to build out both. In this industry, the game is, ‘What is the next frontier in baseball, and where can we get the next competitive advantage?’”

David Laurila grew up in Michigan's Upper Peninsula and now writes about baseball from his home in Cambridge, Mass. He authored the Prospectus Q&A series at Baseball Prospectus from December 2006-May 2011 before being claimed off waivers by FanGraphs. He can be followed on Twitter @DavidLaurilaQA.

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8 years ago

Great stuff.