While there are only four teams still playing in Major League Baseball, the other 26 teams continue with offseason activities to prepare for the 2017 regular season.
The Arizona Diamondbacks fired Dave Stewart as their General Manager less than two weeks ago. It did not take them long to find his replacement, as the D-backs announced they had hired Mike Hazen the General Manager for the Boston Red Sox as their new GM and Executive Vice President.
Hazen was hired only 13 months ago by the Red Sox. His motivation for moving from Boston to Arizona was thought to be due to wanting to have additional authority, something that he shared in Boston with Dave Dombrowski.
Prior to becoming the Boston general manager, Hazen was an assistant GM for years and prior to that, he was part of the player development side.
As the new GM, Hazen’s first task will be to find a new manager. At the same time the Diamondbacks fired Stewart as GM they fired manager Chip Hale.
Some pundits believe Hazen may already have a person in mind as the new manager, with one possibility being Boston’s Torey Lovullo, who was the bench coach this past season.
After choosing a new manager, Hazen will then embark on determining the many needs the team has after finishing the season 69-93 in fourth place 22 games behind National League West champions the Los Angeles Dodgers.
It is likely the team will be going into a rebuilding mode, built around a number of players that are high impact such as Zack Greinke, A.J. Pollock and Paul Goldschmidt. Those three are a good foundation to start with and could help to make any team a competitive one.
If Hazen wants to have a winning team right away, then emphasis during the winter must be on brining in players to complement the three top players the team already has.
It is common knowledge that the ownership at Arizona can be difficult, as executives have seen a revolving door working under the Arizona owners.
Hazen becomes the third different general manager for the Diamondback since the start of the 2104 season. His success or lack of, will go a long way in determining if a fourth GM takes over for Hazen in the short term or long term.