The newest New York Mets rumors suggest that a former Oakland Athletics executive is being considered to fill the team’s vacant general manager role.
In the latest round of New York Mets rumors, new owner Steve Cohen and Mets president Sandy Alderson are considering former Oakland Athletics executive Billy Owens for the team’s general manager position. Such a move would make sense for several reasons, the most important two being that Owens’s strengths as an executive mesh well with ownership’s vision of the team and that he has a preexisting relationship with Sandy Alderson.
According to the New York Post, Mets officials have had internal discussions about bringing Owens aboard. Thus far, the Mets have interviewed several candidates for the role, including former Marlins president of baseball operations Michael Hill, but so far they have yet to comprise an extensive list of candidates. Mets rumors show that Sandy Alderson is conducting his general manager search quietly, pragmatically evaluating the team’s top candidates.
In fact, some of the Mets’ reported candidates have turned them down for various reasons. Former major league pitcher Chris Young was a candidate, but he withdrew his name from consideration because of his desire to keep his family in the Dallas area. Young ultimately accepted the Texas Rangers general manager position.
Billy Owens, 49, has extensive experience in a major league front office. He spent 22 years in the Athletics organization, working his way up to the position of assistant general manager in 2016. He has received accolades for his strong people skills and his ability to work with a diverse group of people, two core strengths that most teams value strongly in their general managers.
It is not only the experience Owens brings that makes him a strong candidate for the Mets position. He is well regarded for his sublime ability to scout and acquire talent. Considering that new Mets owner Steve Cohen wants to invest in talent at the lower-level, Owens’s skills match up to the organization’s vision.
During his time with the Athletics, Owens took the lead in providing input on potential trades and free agent signings. One of his major scouting accomplishments was recruiting Yoenis Cespedes and insisting that the Athletics commit $36 million dollars to him back in 2012. The four-year deal that was ultimately given to Cespedes worked out well for the Athletics. He batted .262/.318/.470, hitting 66 home runs over three seasons, giving the Athletics offense a necessary boost of power in the heart of their lineup.
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It is unclear if Owens has been interviewed for the position or if he is even interested in it. However, if the Mets rumors are true, the team will be considering an experienced executive who could form a strong collaborative partnership with Sandy Alderson.