As of late last night, the New York Mets search for a GM to helm their front office seems to have ended. Although not yet official the team is finalizing a deal to bring Billy Eppler over after being dismissed by the Angel’s in 2020. Eppler was not originally on the short list of names many thought would end up in the chair but he checks a number of boxes for the franchise.
The 46-year old spent five seasons as GM for the Angels and has prior experience with the Yankees in scouting. Eppler made waves with his 12-year extension of Mike Trout plus his ability to persuade Shohei Ohtani to sign with the Angels over other teams with far more financial flexibility. Eppler is also a heavy advocate of analytics – something the Met’s have been putting an increased emphasis on. Unfortunately, what will lately follow him from his time in Los Angeles will be the many failed free-agency signings that more or less bombed and his involvement in hiring former Met’s manager Micky Callaway. The former of these came to a boiling point after the signing of Anthony Rendon to a $245 million seven-year deal, which was yet to pay dividends.
It won’t be long before we get a good idea of the direction Eppler will want to take the Blue and Orange as open season has official began for the MLB offseason. His hands will be full deciding what to do with Marcus Stroman and Javier Baez from the jump, and how to maneuver around the notoriously volatile New York media. Expect zero grace period. Without a return of Stroman or Baez or a splashy free agency signing Eppler’s tenure with the Met’s could start on very rocky grounds.