Mets’ Alderson Adds More Depth to Front Office with Paul DePodesta

November 9th, 2010

November 8, 2010, 6:42 pm
Mets’ Alderson Adds More Depth — to Front Office
By JAY SCHREIBER
The New York Mets

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The Mets don’t have a manager yet, and their bullpen minus Hisanori Takahashi is looking mighty thin, but their front office continues to grow in imposing fashion.

On Monday the Mets announced that Paul DePodesta, a former general manger of the Los Angeles Dodgers, would join the Mets as the team’s new vice president for player development and amateur scouting. Just last week, J. P. Ricciardi, the former general manager of the Toronto Blue Jays, joined the Mets as a special assistant to Sandy Alderson, the team’s new general manager.

To some extent, the Mets are recreating the old Oakland A’s brain trust that became famous in the book on baseball economics titled “Moneyball.’’ It was Alderson, as the Oakland general manager, who brought Ricciardi into the A’s front office in 1996 as a special assistant.

When Alderson left the A’s in 1998 to join the commissioner’s office, he was replaced as general manager by Billy Beane, whom Alderson had brought into the A’s front office in 1994. And Beane brought DePodesta aboard in 1999.

Beane, Ricciardi and DePodesta all worked together in Oakland until Ricciardi was hired as the G.M. of the Blue Jays in November 2001. DePodesta then took the Dodgers job in February 2004. Both were eventually dismissed, and now both are back together on the Mets, working for Alderson. In the front-office standings, the Mets now rank very high. On the field, who knows.

But if Alderson, Ricciardi and DePodesta put their heads together, perhaps they will find a creative way to deal with the roughly $50 million the Mets owe to Oliver Perez, Luis Castillo, Francisco Rodriguez and Carlos Beltran in the final year of their contracts in 2011. The money those four are due is limiting the team’s options as it tries to rebound from two straight losing seasons.