Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |
As the Mets interview candidates to lead their baseball operations department, they remain secretive about the early stages of their process. The view from here is that the situation will yet contain surprises, and what the team has called "outside the box" candidates -- and that a top agent like Brodie Van Wagenen or Casey Close is uniquely positioned to provide what the organization needs.
When Sandy Alderson stepped aside in June, the team lost a leader who brought together different departments, and served as a credible, articulate face of the team. That's why it would be wise to replace him with a person who has gravitas, a strong reputation in the game, and the ability to balance analytics with traditional scouting, rather than acting as a partisan to either side.
Both Van Wagenen and Close bring those qualities. The former is not only respected within the industry, but also enjoys a strong relationship with Mets hierarchy. A leading CAA agent, he represents Jacob deGrom, Yoenis Cespedes, Noah Syndergaard, Tim Tebow and Todd Frazier, and knows the organization well. He has been able to navigate negotiations without conflict or grudge, and communicate with the public smoothly, when appropriate.
Close is a bit more of a remote figure to the public, but has done well for many years with high-profile clients like Derek Jeter and Masahiro Tanaka. He represents former Met Michael Cuddyer, and is popular with players.
Both of these agents would help the Mets transcend the false stats/scouts divide, and bring a fresh voice into a process filled with familiar names. That is why the Mets have already discussed both Close and Van Wagenen for their top baseball job, as we've previously reported.
With respected baseball execs like Ben Cherington and Josh Byrnes uninterested, it makes sense to seriously consider this pair of agents -- and there is no indication that the Mets have moved on from the initial idea.