In a surprise to absolutely no one with a pulse and to the sadness of no one but Braves fans, the Arizona Diamondbacks today cut ties with General Manager Dave Stewart and skip Chip Hale. The real surprise is that Chief Baseball Manager and Head of Grit Production Tony LaRussa was not let go, as well.
Arizona finished 69-93, missing the playoffs once again, while the team collectively had its fifth straight losing season. To lay this at Chip Hale’s feet is frankly wrong, since he had no say in the player shenanigans brought forth by Stewart, and by extension, LaRussa and ownership. Not to say that Hale is blameless, because he’s definitely not, but the rot in the desert has been happening for much longer than 2014, when Hale was brought on to manage the team.
Dave Stewart, on the other hand, had made disastrous deal after monumental failures of trades. He will forever be known as the guy who singlehandedly improved the Atlanta farm team by giving up Ender Inciarte, Touki Toussaint, and reincarnated Civil War general Dansby Swanson, among others. In return, the D’backs got….Phil Gosselin and the ghost of Shelby Miller.
Stewart also pulled the trigger on the Zack Greinke signing, a $206 million contract, which will hang like a lead balloon over the franchise for years to come, regardless of how well ZG pitches in the future.
Arizona will now look for a fifth general manager and fifth manager since 2010.
Just rub some dirt on it, guys.
UPDATE: According to our old friend Bill Baer, the Gritty Snakes have indeed pulled the plug on the LaRussa reign of terror.
Apparently, TLR is still deciding whether he wants to stay with the organization. I am sure that if he does leave, he’ll find willing takes in such places like, oh, St. Louis, I guess.