John Hart turns down offer to be Braves' GM

·MLB columnist
John Hart turns down offer to be Braves' GM

John Hart turned down the offer to be the Atlanta Braves' general manager, prompting the team to focus on current assistant GM John Coppolella and Kansas City Royals GM Dayton Moore as its top two targets, sources told Yahoo Sports on Tuesday.

Another name that has surfaced in internal Braves discussions: Dan O’Dowd, the former Colorado GM who recently turned down a contract extension with the Rockies and resigned.

Hart, 66, was the first choice of Atlanta president John Schuerholz and Bobby Cox, the Braves’ former manager now serving in a top adviser role. Hart, too, has been an adviser with the Braves, and Atlanta tried to persuade him to take the job after the firing of Frank Wren.

After long consideration, Hart told the Braves' brass the rigors of the full-time job concerned him, forcing Atlanta to turn its attention to Coppolella, a bright young mind whom Cox and Hart both think extremely highly of, and Moore, a former Braves assistant GM whose Royals are now one win from the World Series.

The Braves have yet to speak with Moore about the job, and there is doubt inside the Atlanta organization whether he would leave Kansas City. In addition to hailing from Kansas, Moore has built the Royals into a strong contender with a deep farm system.

Atlanta is not expected to make its decision until after the Royals’ season ends, which could extend the process through the end of the month. The Braves do believe Moore would be on board with recent moves, including the return of manager Fredi Gonzalez, the hiring of top scouts Roy Clark and Gordon Blakeley, and the hiring of Brian Bridges as scouting director.

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