All offseason, I was extremely critical of the way the Orioles conducted their search for a new general manager. Buck Showalter was instrumental in the hiring, and was sitting in on the interviews.
In what other industry would an inferior have a say in hiring a superior?
The Orioles do their own thing these days. That’s a big reason why they have lost for 14 consecutive seasons.
However, now that Duquette has made his way to Baltimore after a decade out of baseball, I’ve been pretty impressed with both what he’s done and what he has said he plans to do.
He basically obliterated the Orioles major league scouting department. He’s hired Fred Ferreira as Executive Director of International Recruiting.
He’s added economic supervisor Stephen Walters, whose logic makes all advanced stats/metrics guys smile ear to ear. Duquette has added Danny Hass, who spent 10 years in the Red Sox organization and was named 2004 Amateur Scout of the Year.
Duquette has even taken a dip in the Japanese market by adding Tsuyoshi Wada to the fold. While he may not be the “world class pitcher” Duquette referred to him as at Thursday’s press conference, this move can only help the Orioles as they hope to open more doors not only in Japan but across the globe.
We’ve all heard the old cliche that a house cannot be built without a solid foundation. Well, the Orioles have literally had no foundation over the past 14 seasons. A hurricane wiped them out in 1998 and they’ve spent over a decade trying to scotch-tape the bricks back together rather than starting all over again.
Dan Duquette is doing everything in his power to get this franchise back on track.
The million dollar question is how much power does he actually have?
Maybe I’m wrong, but I’m convinced this guy knows how to build a successful organization. He’s done it in Montreal and he did it in Boston. After witnessing his words followed by his actions here thus far in Baltimore, I’m pretty sure he’s got the right idea.