With the Los Angeles Angels reportedly set to hire Jerry Dipoto as their next general manager, it is important to look at his history. Dipoto, a former major league relief pitcher, has nearly a decade of experience in scouting and player development. For three months in 2010, Dipoto served as interim general manager of the Arizona Diamondbacks and made some big moves.
Dipoto took over in Arizona when Josh Byrnes was fired as general manager on July 1, 2010. On July 25, Dipoto made a huge deal that affected both his former and future franchises, trading Dan Haren to the Angels for Joe Saunders and three minor leaguers. The long-term gain for Arizona in that deal will depend on left-handed pitcher Tyler Skaggs, who by most accounts is a top prospect and has already made 10 starts in Double A by age 20.
Still, the Angels have to be pretty happy with what they received in Haren, a true top of the rotation starter to pair with Jered Weaver. While it sure would have been nice for Arizona to have Haren near the top of their rotation in the playoffs this season, the Diamondbacks were a 65-win team in 2010 and Dipoto and made that deal thinking of the future (Saunders notwithstanding), not to mention needing to dump salary.
Five days after the Haren deal, Dipoto was at it again, trading starting pitcher Edwin Jackson to the Chicago White Sox for Daniel Hudson and minor league pitcher David Holmberg. Not only has Hudson been younger and cheaper than Jackson, but he has been the better pitcher over the last year and a half. Chalk that up as a win for Dipoto.
Dipoto's background is in scouting and player development, and is highly thought of within the game. MLB Trade Rumors tanked Dipoto as the top GM candidate in baseball in August, and explained his philosophy to Tim Dierkes:
The day I feel like I've stopped learning about baseball is the day I should go home. Every single day you're going to learn something new and start to adjust your lines of thinking. It's an ongoing education. Every person I meet in the game, my first instinct is to learn something from them. My mentor is the game.
Dipoto will be the 11th general manager in Angels history.
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