Athletics executive vice president of baseball operations Billy Beane has withdrawn his name from consideration for the Mets’ vacant president of baseball operations role, Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports (Twitter link). MLB Network’s Jon Heyman tweeted earlier in the day that the Mets were quite pessimistic about their chances of luring Beane, and the Mets have also reportedly been denied permission to interview Brewers president David Stearns for what would be a lateral move. It’s the second straight year the Brewers have denied the Mets permission to interview Stearns.
The Mets’ early reported wish list of Theo Epstein, Beane and Stearns has, in largely unsurprising fashion, fizzled out rather quickly. Epstein spoke with owner Steve Cohen earlier this month, after which reports indicated the two agreed there was no fit in place. Epstein stepped down as Cubs president of baseball operations this time last year and said shortly thereafter that while he did envision an eventual “third chapter” to his baseball operations career, he planned to be away from the rigors of a full-time baseball ops job for more than a year.
Both Beane and Stearns, meanwhile, are under contract with their current organizations through at least the 2022 season. Beane, in particular, would’ve been an ambitious target given that he’d need to divest his minority ownership stake in the A’s in order to take a job with the Mets, where former Beane mentor Sandy Alderson is the current team president.
There’s been a good bit of speculation regarding the Mets and that trio, but given Epstein’s comments last year and the contractual status of Stearns and Beane, all three have seemed like long shots. The initial composition of the Mets’ list suggests that they’re aiming for experienced, high-profiled executives to take up the president of baseball operations mantle in Queens, but it’s not yet clear who’ll be interviewed for the post.
Former Padres and Diamondbacks general manager Josh Byrnes, currently a senior vice president of baseball operations with the Dodgers, has reportedly been the subject of internal discussions among the Mets. SNY’s Andy Martino suggested over the weekend that the Mets could look to Brewers GM Matt Arnold, Giants GM Scott Harris or Dodgers assistant GM Brandon Gomes.
Hiring either Arnold or Harris would require the Mets to offer a president of baseball operations title, as executives are generally only allowed to interview with other clubs in order to pursue promotions (hence the Brewers denying permission to speak to Stearns). Gomes could conceivably be hired as a general manager, although Martino reported that the Dodgers could be prepared to promote Gomes to that position within their own organization if he draws interest elsewhere. Los Angeles does not currently have a general manager under president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman and has not since former GM Farhan Zaidi was hired away by the division-rival Giants.