Ranking the NL East: General Managers
Apr 11, 2014; Atlanta, GA, USA; Atlanta Braves general manager Frank Wren and manager Fredi Gonzalez (33) present shortstop Andrelton Simmons (19) with his 2013 Gold and Platinum Glove awards before the game against the Washington Nationals at Turner Field. Mandatory Credit: Daniel Shirey-USA TODAY Sports
4. John Hart – Atlanta Braves
Technically, the Braves actually don’t have a GM at the moment. Frank Wren, the last person to hold the position, was fired near the end of September. John Hart, a good friend of team President John Schuerholz, was then quickly hired to be the interim GM before being promoted to President of Baseball Operations at the end of October.
For now, though, we’ll call Hart the GM, since he certainly appears to be the main man calling the shots for the Braves. He’s been the man mentioned whenever Atlanta has pulled off a trade this offseason, which has been far from an infrequent occurrence.
So far, Hart’s tenure as GM has consisted of a giant fire sale. He dumped Jason Heyward, Justin Upton, and Evan Gattis. Friday, they dealt two pitchers, David Hale and Gus Schlosser, to the Rockies. All signs point to Hart being in full-on rebuilding mode.
Unfortunately, since this is Hart’s first offseason with the Braves, there’s not a lot of results to judge him on with this team. Instead, we’ll have to look at what Hart did before he reached Atlanta.
Hart’s last appearance as a GM was incredibly unsuccessful. He served that role for the Texas Rangers and compiled a measly 311-337 record with no postseason appearances. They never made the playoffs, and finished last or next to last every year.
The bright side of the Texas experience actually occurred after his stint as GM ended. Hart served as an advisor to the team through 2013, which included two trips to the World Series
Prior to that, though, Hart also achieved very respectable results in Cleveland. His teams won six of seven AL Central titles, and even went on World Series appearances in 1995 and 1997.
Those Indians teams were nearly 20 years ago, though, and his only recent success happened in a non-GM role. Of course, we won’t really have an idea for how good Atlanta’s GM is until they actually hire one, and his plans start to take effect.
Next: Number 3