The Mets have narrowed their GM search to three candidates: CAA's Brodie Van Wagenen, former Rangers and Brewers GM Doug Melvin, and Rays senior VP of baseball operations Chaim Bloom.
Second round interviews are expected to wrap up later this week, with the Mets potentially making the new hire shortly after.
Who is Doug Melvin?
Melvin, 66, is a former GM and minor-league pitcher that began his front office career with the Yankees as an assistant scouting director. He later served as assistant general manager and director of player development of the Orioles before being hired to run the Rangers in 1994.
In Texas, he inherited a mostly .500 franchise and got them to their first-ever postseason in 1995. The Rangers made it back to October the following two seasons, marking the only back-to-back-to-back playoff run in franchise history.
After Texas, he spent the 2002 season as a consultant for the Red Sox, after which he was hired to run the Brewers. In Milwaukee, he inherited a losing franchise, made key trades and eventually ended the franchise's 15-year streak of losing seasons.
In subsequent years, he traded for CC Sabathia, Aramis Ramirez, Carlos Gomez, Mike Fiers, Gerardo Parra and others helping the team get to two postseasons.
In 2015, he was admittedly burned out and transitioned himself to an advisory role, after which current GM David Stearns was hired.
Stearns is on record saying he utilized talent acquired by Melvin to make deals and signings that helped propel the franchise to this seasons's NLCS.
"Doug knows everyone in baseball," a young, rival GM that once worked with Melvin told me Monday. "He's quietly brilliant and -- despite what you'd think -- he understands why analytics should play a role these days. He's very astute, very aware of the state of the game. He's also really good at getting people to buy in to his agenda."
My Take: It's natural for people my age and younger to fear the term "old school," especially given how modern front offices rely on statistical evidence. However, my understanding is that the Mets are trying to hire someone that does not necessarily require hands-on use of number-crunching because that will be left to his assistants, advisors and possible GM (if Melvin is hired for a more senior-level position).
In fact, there is a new wave spreading across the game of hiring strategists and scouts that can balance both the analytical and eye test, which is how most people I've talked with describe Melvin. I also like his track record taking over two struggling franchises -- and advising the Red Sox before their successful run -- to get them back in position to win with young talent.
In the end, though, I see him less as a day-to-day GM and more as a CEO or President of Baseball Operations delegating to a younger, more progressive GM and staff.
Matthew Cerrone (Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Contact) is lead writer of MetsBlog.com, which he created in 2003. He also hosts the MetsBlog Podcast, which you can subscribe to here. His new book, The New York Mets Fans' Bucket List, details 44 things every Mets fan should experience during their lifetime. To check it out, click here!