It's been a long time since Sandy Alderson built an organization, but if his past success in Oakland is an indication, the New York Mets got themselves the right man to run the club.
Jon Heyman of Sports Illustrated reported first that the Mets hired Alderson to be their general manager, and an announcement could come Friday.
At 62 years old, Alderson is 22 years the senior of the other top candidate, Josh Byrnes, who recently was fired by the Arizona Diamondbacks after being their GM for four years.
The 'Ropolitans, for one, seem to have hope that Alderson will be able to stand up to ownership so they let him do his job.
Heyman also says Alderson, whose team needs a new manager to replace Jerry Manuel, is expected to ignore calls within the organization to hire Wally Backman.
Alderson's résumé is unmatched, having served as GM and later president of the Oakland Athletics from 1983 to 1997. With Alderson and manager Tony La Russa in the lead, the A's teams of 1988-1992 with Jose Canseco, Mark McGwire and Dennis Eckersley won four division titles and reached three World Series — winning it all in '89.
With Alderson as GM, the A's also turned out three straight AL Rookies of the Year — Canseco, McGwire and Walt Weiss. Canseco wasn't drafted by Alderson, but he should get credit for developing him. And those A's teams were constructed every which way — draft, free agency, trades, etc.
If there's a downside to Alderson, it's that he hasn't run day-to-day baseball operations since '97, having served as CEO for the San Diego Padres until working for the commissioner's office this past season.
He's also seen as a possible successor to Bud Selig.
Here are Alderson's top draftees/signees by WAR:
Player ... Year (round) ... WAR ...
Mark McGwire '84 (1st) ... 63.1 in 1874 games
Jason Giambi(notes) '92 (2nd) ... 52.7 in 2039 games
Miguel Tejada(notes) '94 (FA) ... 42.0 in 2027 games
Tim Hudson(notes) '97 (6th) ... 41.0 in 169 games
Eric Chavez(notes) '96 (1st) ... 36.2 in 1320 games
Terry Steinbach '83 (9th) 27.9 in 1546 games
Kevin Tapani '86 (2nd) 26.6 in 142 games
Ramon Hernandez(notes) '94 (FA) 21.1 in 1336 games
Walt Weiss '85 (1st) ... 15.1 in 1495 games
Scott Brosius '87 (20th) ... 14.5 in 1146 games
Tony Batista '91 (FA) ... 12.5 in 1309 games
Rod Beck '86 (13th) ... 11.7 in 704 games
Scott Spiezio '93 (6th) ... 9.5 in 1273 games
Mark Bellhorn '05 (2nd) ... 7.7 in 731 games
Darren Lewis '88 (18th) ... 6.8 in 1353 games
Ben Grieve '94 (1st) ... 6.7 in 976 games
Luis Polonia '84 (FA) ... 6.6 in 1379 games
Lance Blankenship '86 (10th) 6.3 in 461 games
Miguel Olivo(notes) '96 (FA) ... 6.2 in 866 games
Felix Jose '84 (FA) ... 5.8 in 747 games
Jeff DaVanon '95 (26th) ... 5.8 in 528 games
Wally Whitehurst '85 (3rd) 5.3 in 163 games
Greg Cadaret '83 (11th)... 5.0 in 451 games
Todd Burns '84 (7th) ... 4.8 in 203 games
Kevin Gregg(notes) '96 (15th) ... 3.8 in 406 games