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Josh Byrnes was the general manager of the San Diego Padres until being fired from this position on June 22, 2014. Previously, he served as General Manager of the Arizona Diamondbacks of Major League Baseball from November 2005 to July 2010.
Byrnes grew up in Washington, D.C., where he attended and played second base for St. Albans School. He graduated in 1992 from Haverford College with a BA in English. He played on the collegiate baseball team while attending Haverford. He began his professional career with a health-care consulting company after school. He began his baseball career for the Cleveland Indians in 1994, quickly working his way up the organizational ladder, first as an intern, then as a video scout, and, eventually, to the position of scouting director in 1998. In 1999, he was hired by colleague Dan O'Dowd to fill the assistant GM position for the Colorado Rockies, a job he held for two years. He then took the same job under Theo Epstein and the Boston Red Sox until October 2005, when he was hired by the Diamondbacks to replace the departing interim General Manager Bob Gebhard.
Part of the new breed of young general managers, Byrnes was 35 when he was hired by the Diamondbacks in 2005. In February 2008, he was given an 8-year extension that was to last through the 2015 season.
During the 2007 season, Josh was quoted by the Arizona Republic as saying the team had decided not to offer Eric Byrnes a long term contract. It seemed a straightforward decision given Eric Byrnes high asking price, age, and the teams surplus of young outfield prospects. But Eric was widely regarded as the "face of the franchise" the team's most popular player, and fan support for an extension was strong. Late in the season, when it was still unclear whether the Diamondbacks would make the playoffs, team president Jeff Moorad decided to negotiate personally with Eric. The result was their agreement on a 3 year $30 million contract with a complete no trade clause, which has greatly influenced team decisions ever since. Josh Byrnes' role in the Eric Byrnes contract remains unclear.
Not a major trade, but the Padres got the more beneficial production out of it. Hairston hit 33 home runs and drove in 80 RBI for the Padres in roughly two seasons. Rosales has appeared in forty-five games for the Diamondbacks with a 4.45 ERA and a 1.314 WHIP.
Moorad's signing of Eric Byrnes seemed to make Quentin expendable, and his frequent injuries and penchant for being hit by pitches also produced concerns whether he would be able to stay healthy. Carlos Quentin in the immediate year he went to Chicago had 36 home runs, 100 RBI, an All-Star appearance, a Silver Slugger Award and a fifth place AL MVP finish. But Carlos missed the last 32 games of the season due to injury, and was hurt again in 2009, this time missing 63 games. And when he played in 2009 he was not productive, he had a negative $2.1M value according to FanGraph's Value measure, ranking 32nd among MLB left fielders, behind Diamondbacks rookie Gerardo Parra.
- Carlos González, Brett Anderson, Chris Carter, Aaron Cunningham, Dana Eveland, and Greg Smith to the A's for Dan Haren on December 14, 2007.
Dan Haren was a work-horse and led the Diamondbacks staff for two and a half seasons, with a 37-26 record, a 3.56 ERA, and an opponents OPS of .686 in his time with the team, before being traded to the Angels on July 25, 2010. Carlos Gonzalez is an emerging star with the Rockies, where he currently leads the National League in runs, hits, RBI, batting average, and slugging percentage for the 2010 season. Brett Anderson became one of the top pitching prospects in baseball in 2008, before beginning his career with the Oakland A's where he has a 3.69 ERA over his first 45 MLB starts. Chris Carter was ranked Oakland's top prospect by Baseball America entering 2010, had an .894 OPS in AA for the 2010 season, and earned a September callup with the A's. Cunningham, after a trade to the Padres, has emerged as a starting outfielder for that team in the summer of 2010, with a .833 OPS on the season.
Adam Dunn amounted to a rental player that didn’t help the Diamondbacks win the division or make the playoffs in 2008. The sudden economic downturn not only forced the team to reduce payroll, but it also meant it was not able to offer Dunn arbitration for fear that he would accept, instead of testing the weak free agent market. Consequently Arizona didn’t receive any compensation draft picks when Adam Dunn left for free agency, signing with the Nationals in 2009.
Bonifacio was the Diamondbacks top 2nd base prospect, renowned for his speed, but the biggest question was whether he would be a useful hitter at the major league level. Rauch went from closer for the Nationals to only being used in blowouts for the Diamondbacks. Bonifacio started the season in 2009 on fire for the Nationals while Rauch struggled until the hiring of new manager AJ Hinch. He then returned to form as one of the better relievers in the league, compiling a 2.81 ERA from April 28 until the seasons end. Rauch was subsequently traded to Minnesota in late 2009 for Kevin Mulvey. Bonifacio, after his opening 5 game hot streak, slumped over the remainder of the season, finishing with the lowest OPS among qualifying 2009 MLB batters.
- In December, 2007 Byrnes traded José Valverde to the Astros in exchange for infielder Chris Burke and right-handed pitchers Chad Qualls and Juan Gutierrez.
With the Diamondbacks in last place, 12.5 games of first-place San Diego, and citing a need for accountability and overall change, owner Ken Kendrick and team President Derrick Hall announced on July 2, 2010 that both Josh Byrnes and team manager A.J. Hinch had been relieved of their duties. Josh Byrnes was replaced on an interim basis by Jerry DiPoto and Hinch was replaced also on an interim basis by the promotion of bench coach Kirk Gibson.
San Diego Padres
On December 3, 2010, Byrnes was hired by the San Diego Padres as their Vice President of Baseball Operations, reuniting him with GM Jed Hoyer, with whom he worked in Boston, and team owner Jeff Moorad, who was the previous CEO of the Diamondbacks.
On October 26, 2011, Josh Byrnes was promoted to General Manager of the San Diego Padres.
On June 22, 2014 Byrnes was fired by the San Diego Padres as their Vice President of Baseball Operations and General Manager.
- Oct. 22, 2010 - 3:45 PM ET (2010-10-22). "Mets narrow GM search to Alderson, Byrnes - MLB- NBC Sports". Nbcsports.msnbc.com. Retrieved 2011-10-27.
- "Dan Haren 2010 Pitching Gamelogs". Baseball-Reference.com. Retrieved 2011-10-27.
- "Byrnes officially becomes Padres GM as Hoyer, McLeod join Cubs". SignOnSanDiego.com. Retrieved 2011-10-27.
- "Padres fire general manager Byrnes". ESPN.com. Associated Press. June 22, 2014. Retrieved June 23, 2014.
- Byrnes a Rising Star on Deck, The Boston Globe, (4/17/05)
- D-Backs Name Byrnes New GM, MLB.com, (10/29/05)
- Baseball Lifer Has Risen Quickly to D-Backs’ GM Job, East Valley Tribune, (11/9/05)
- Haverford Scores Double Play, The Philadelphia Inquirer, (6/11/07)
- For D-Backs' GM, Path Never Lacked Direction, The Washington Post, (7/8/08)
- GM Byrnes Studies the Game, The Arizona Republic, (9/14/08)
- Hinch Hiring Comes with Skepticism, The Arizona Republic, (5/8/2009)
- Hinch a Bizarre Selection for D-Backs, The Arizona Republic, (5/8/2009)
- Hinch May Succeed But Damage is Done, Azcentral.com, (5/19/2009)
- From Webb injury to 'organizational advocacy' to last place in NL West , Fox Sports Arizona (12/27/2009)
- Arizona Diamondbacks No Chew Crew Azdiamondbacks.com (1/1/2010)
- These 10 Will Be Ones To Keep An Eye On, baseballamerica.com(7/1/2006)
- On-the-job Training for A.J, NYTimes.com (5/18/2009)
- Jon Rauch - Baseball Reference
- Cot's Contracts - Arizona Diamondbacks
|Major League Baseball general managers by team|
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