Rockies take fast, easy way out on GM ‘search’

Nolan Arenado greets Bill Schmidt, the new Colorado GM.

Nolan Arenado greets Bill Schmidt, the new Colorado GM.
Image: AP

When Jeff Bridich and the Rockies “mutually agreed” that the general manager was stepping down in April, the team announcement made a promise about the future.

“The organization will be appointing an interim General Manager for the remainder of the season, and they will conduct a search for a permanent General Manager once the 2021 MLB postseason has completed.”


Well, congratulations to the World Series champion, uh… wait a minute. The regular season isn’t even over. Still, on Saturday, Colorado named Bill Schmidt, who has been serving as the interim GM, as the permanent man for the job.

So much for that search for the right person to build the first division winner in Rockies history. So much for the “Selig Rule” about interviewing minority candidates. So much for fans’ faith in the organization to do anything but whatever owner Dick Monfort’s first idea is about anything at any time.

Monfort’s stewardship of the franchise is a big reason that the Rockies job isn’t that desirable to begin with. Then there’s the fact that Colorado has MLB Pipeline’s fifth worst-ranked farm system, and no Top 50 prospects. Having traded Nolan Arenado before the season to playoff-bound St. Louis, the Rockies haven’t given pending free agent shortstop Trevor Story any reason to stick around, and it’s not like the lineup is full of promising and developing talent — one-time prospect Brendan Rodgers, at 25, is the youngest everyday player in Colorado.

But it’s still one of 30 major league general manager jobs, and Schmidt’s biggest accomplishments in the interim job were a couple of waiver claims, trading Mychal Givens to Cincinnati and notably acquiring a 19-year-old pitcher whom the Rockies somehow didn’t draft out of a Colorado high school, and failing to trade Story before he walks in free agency.

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That performance merited forgoing any kind of real search for a new GM? Those back-to-back wild card appearances in 2017 and 2018 were fun, and they’re going to have to last Rockies fans for a while, because the franchise showed today that it’s not interested in doing any better.

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