Ned Colletti

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Ned Colletti
NED COLLETTI.jpg
Born Ned Louis Colletti, Jr.
Chicago
Nationality USA
Alma mater Northern Illinois University
Occupation General Manager
Years active 7 1/2
Employer Los Angeles Dodgers
Home town Franklin Park, Illinois
Predecessor Paul DePodesta
Website
http://mlb.mlb.com/la/community/executives/colletti.html

Ned Louis Colletti, Jr. is general manager of the Los Angeles Dodgers and the winningest active general manager in the National League from 2006 through 2013. Before moving to the Dodgers, he was assistant general manager of the San Francisco Giants.[1]

Colletti graduated from East Leyden High School in Franklin Park, Illinois, and attended Triton College before graduating from Northern Illinois University. He was inducted into the Triton College Sports Hall of Fame in 1993, the same year as the Major League players Kirby Puckett, Lance Johnson and Jeff Reboulet.[2]

In 1982, Colletti began his Major League career with the Chicago Cubs. He worked both in the media relations and baseball operations departments, rising to assume responsibility for key salary arbitration cases and assisting in player acquisitions and salary negotiations. He was a member of the front office when the Cubs won the National League East in 1984 and 1989 and was instrumental in retaining the Hall of Famers Ryne Sandberg and Andre Dawson. Colletti was honored with Major League Baseball's Robert O. Fishel Award for Public Relations Excellence in 1990.[3]

Colletti left the Cubs and joined the front office of the San Francisco Giants in 1994 as director of baseball operations. He was promoted to assistant general manager in October 1996 and in his nine seasons working side-by-side with Brian Sabean, the Giants had a 813-644 record (.558), winning an average of 90.3 games per season. In 2013, his eighth season with the Dodgers, Colletti had more wins than any active general manager in the National League.

Career with the Dodgers[edit]

Colletti became the 10th general manager in Los Angeles Dodgers history and the fifth in eight years when he was hired on November 16, 2005.[4]

The Dodgers made the playoffs in four of his first eight seasons from 2006-13. Only two other current National League general managers -- John Mozeliak and Walt Jocketty -- can claim that level of post-season success. Mozeliak's St.Louis Cardinals went to the playoffs in 2008 and for three consecutive years from 2011 to 2013. Jocketty won the NL Championship with St. Louis in 2006 and took the Cincinnati Reds to the playoffs in 2010, 2012 and 2013.

Los Angeles went to the NL Division Series in Colletti's first season in 2006 and reached the National League Championship Series in 2008 and 2009 for the first time since 1977-78.[5] The Dodgers became the first Major League team to clinch a spot in the 2013 post-season when they came from behind to defeat the Arizona Diamondbacks 7-6 at Chase Field in Phoenix on September 19, 2013 -- with nine games still to play in the regular season.[6]

The Dodgers defeated the Atlanta Braves 3 games to 1 in the 2013 National League Division Series, earning their third trip to the National League Championship Series in six years (2008, 2009 and 2013). In the quarter century since the Dodgers' last World Series in 1988, they won 14 playoff games. Thirteen of those playoff wins came under Colletti (4 in 2008 NLDS/NLCS, 4 in 2009 NLDS/NLCS, 5 in 2013 NLDS/NLCS; the only other Dodger post-season win since the 1988 World Series came in the 2004 NL Division Series under then-GM Dan Evans).[7]

Only once in Colletti's first eight seasons did the Dodgers have a losing record. That was in 2010, when the Dodgers finished within a game of .500 at 80-82, despite being financially handcuffed by then owners Frank and Jamie McCourt. The McCourts separated on October 14, 2009,[8] and the break up of their 30-year marriage set in motion two years of legal wrangling and financial scandals that led Major League Baseball to briefly step in and assume control of the Dodgers[9] and eventually forced Frank McCourt to take the team into bankruptcy. Colletti provided stability in the front office and clubhouse while the McCourts alienated so many fans that attendance dropped by nearly 600,000 in 2011, the first time in a decade the that Dodgers had drawn fewer than 3 million customers.[10] In 2010, under Colletti's leadership, the Dodgers were named Topps Organization of the Year, an honor presented annually to the Major League franchise that has shown most-outstanding performance, depth and talent among its Major and Minor League teams.[11]

The Dodgers' 689-606 (.532) record from 2006 through 2013 was fourth best among National League teams behind only the Phillies (.549) and Cardinals (.540), And Atlanta Braves (.533). Among NL West teams, the Dodgers' record was 34 games better than second-best San Francisco Giants.

Colletti reached 600 wins as a general manager on April 6, 2013, when Clayton Kershaw outdueled A.J. Burnett of the Pittsburgh Pirates 1-0 at Dodger Stadium. Kershaw also pitched Colletti's 500th win as GM of the Dodgers on September 9, 2011, beating Tim Lincecum and the Giants 2-1 in San Francisco. Only Buzzie Bavasi reached the 600-win mark faster in Dodger history.[12]

Since Colletti took over the Dodgers in November 2005, no active general manager in the National League has won more games.

Active NL general manager wins 2006-2013
Ned Colletti 689 Dodgers
Walt Jocketty 661 Reds *
Doug Melvin 658 Brewers
Brian Sabean 655 Giants
Dan O'Dowd 626 Rockies
Frank Wren 612 Braves
Kevin Towers 571 Diamondbacks **
John Mozeliak 538 Cardinals
Josh Byrnes 501 Padres ***
Michael Hill 454 Marlins ****
Ruben Amaro, Jr. 446 Phillies
Neal Huntington 433 Pirates
Mike Rizzo 392 Nationals
Jed Hoyer 288 Cubs *****
Sandy Alderson 225 Mets
  • Jocketty's total includes 161 wins with Cardinals 2006-07
    • Towers' total includes 315 with the Padres 2006-09
      • Byrnes' total includes 349 wins with the Diamondbacks 2006-10
        • Hill was promoted to president of the Marlins on September 29, 2013, and replaced as GM by Dan Jennings
          • Hoyer's total includes 161 wins with the Padres 2010-11

National League 2006-2013[edit]

During Colletti's tenure, the Dodgers have compiled the best earned run average, the third-best batting average, and fourth-best win-loss record in the National League, just 1½ games behind the third-best Atlanta Braves.

Team W-L Pct. Team ERA Team BA
PHI 712-584 .549 LAD 3.71 STL .270
STL 699-596 .540 ATL 3.79 COL .267
ATL 691-605 .533 SFG 3.87 LAD .264
LAD 689-606 .532 SDP 3.89 ATL .259
CIN 661-635 .510 STL 3.94 NYM .259
MIL 658-638 .508 PHI 4.02 MIL .259
SFG 655-640 .506 NYM 4.08 PHI .259
NYM 648-648 .500 CIN 4.13 CHI .258
ARZ 639-657 .493 ARZ 4.19 SFG .258
SDP 628-669 .484 CHC 4.19 CIN .256
COL 626-671 .483 WAS 4.23 ARZ .255
CHC 604-690 .467 MIA 4.24 MIA .254
MIA 603-692 .466 MIL 4.27 WAS .254
WAS 595-699 .460 PIT 4.41 PIT .251
PIT 566-729 .437 COL 4.52 SDP .248

Key acquisitions[edit]

From June to December 2012, Colletti, with the backing of a new, aggressive ownership team led by Dodgers' president Stan Kasten, owners Mark Walter, Earvin "Magic" Johnson, Peter Guber, and Guggenheim Baseball Management, spent more than $600 million to bring a parade of all-star players and prospects to Los Angeles.

The wholesale makeover began in late June when the Dodgers spent $42 million to sign 21-year-old Cuban prospect Yasiel Puig to a six-year deal.

On July 25, Colletti brought in the former National League batting champion Hanley Ramirez as the key to a four-player trade with the Miami Marlins that also brought left-handed reliever Randy Choate to Los Angeles.[13]

Then, in a 10-day stretch, Colletti acquired closer Brandon League[14] from the Seattle Mariners and two veteran additions from the Philadelphia Phillies – the All-Star outfielder Shane Victorino[15] and the starter Joe Blanton.[16]

On August 25, 2012, with the Dodgers three games behind the Giants in the National League West and 1½ games out of the final wild card spot, Colletti completed a nine-player trade that the Los Angeles Times called a "block-buster" and a "stunning development".[17] Key to the deal was the acquisition of four-time All-Star first baseman Adrian Gonzalez from the Boston Red Sox. But the Dodgers also obtained the four-time All-Star outfielder Carl Crawford, three-time All-Star pitcher Josh Beckett, and respected, switch-hitting utility infielder Nick Punto. The Red Sox received first-baseman James Loney and four prospects, including infielder Iván DeJesús, Jr. and pitcher Allen Webster.

The surprising deal, which the Boston Globe's Dan Shaughnessy called "the biggest Red Sox trade since Babe Ruth was dealt to the Yankees for cash in 1920",[18] was the talk of baseball for months. But Colletti, Kasten and the Guggenheim group were not finishede. After ending the season 86-76, but failing to make the playoffs, the Dodgers were active on the free-agent market, signing starting pitchers Zack Greinke, a former Cy Young winner, and Ryu Hyun-jin,[19] who had been an All-Star in each of his seven seasons in the Korea Baseball Organization from 2006-12. Greinke, who won the Cy Young with Kansas City in 2009, was considered the top free agent on the market during the 2012-13 off-season and provided the Dodgers with what MLB.com called "unprecedented starting pitching depth."[20]

Combined, the eleven players Colletti acquired between June and December 2012 won seven Gold Gloves, four Silver Slugger awards and one Cy Young. They were named to 18 All-Star games, appeared in 42 League Championship games and 29 World Series games before coming to the Dodgers. All were between the prime baseball ages of 25 and 32. None of the pitchers were signed to contracts that would have them pitch for the Dodgers beyond the age of 36.

Even after assembling one of the best teams in baseball in 2013, Colletti and his staff continued to strengthen the roster in July and August, adding a starting pitcher (Ricky Nolasco), three relievers (Carlos Marmol, Edinson Volquez, and Brian Wilson) and veteran hitter Michael Young.[21]

Before the Guggenheim Baseball Group gave Colletti the financial flexibility to pursue top-tier talent, he made a series of notable acquisitions that helped the Dodgers make the playoffs in three of his first six seasons with the club. Among them were: Takashi Saito, Hiroki Kuroda, Juan Pierre, David Wells, Jim Thome, Casey Blake and Manny Ramirez. But not all of his acquisitions were so successful. Colletti was criticized for bringing in several high-priced busts, including Andruw Jones, Jason Schmidt and, for a while, Juan Uribe. Schmidt was injured and only pitched in 10 games for the Dodgers. Jones had one woeful year for the Dodgers in 2008, batting just .158 in 75 games, but rebounded when he left Los Angeles to hit 63 home runs in four more Major League seasons with the Rangers, White Sox and Yankees. Uribe was disappointing his first two seasons, but turned things around dramatically in 2013, playing Gold Glove defense and batting .278 with 12 home runs[22] and five stolen bases to become one of the most valuable players on Colletti's fourth post-season team. Uribe batted .375 in the 2013 NLDS with two home runs, including a two-run, eighth inning blast to the Dodger bullpen that proved to be the Series clincher in a 4-3 win.[23]

Colletti acquired the future Hall of Famer Greg Maddux twice, trading César Izturis to the Chicago Cubs for Maddux at the July 31 deadline in 2006[24] and giving up a pair of minor leaguers to bring Maddux back from the San Diego Padres on August 19, 2008.[25]

Colletti's first trade, less than a month after he became general manager, brought two-time All-Star Andre Ethier to the Dodgers from Oakland for Milton Bradley[26] and the infielder Antonio Perez, who was out of baseball the next season.

In addition to bringing in new talent, Colletti has kept the core of his winning teams intact. Between November 2011 and June 2012, he signed the MVP runner-up Matt Kemp,[27] the National League Cy Young winner Clayton Kershaw,[28] and Ethier[29] to extended contracts.

International[edit]

Under the Guggenheim ownership group, Colletti has made strides rekindling the organization's storied history of international involvement in player acquisition, player development and promoting the game. In addition to signing Puig, Ryu, Saito, Kuroda and Kenley Jansen of Curaçao, the Dodgers established a working arrangement with La Guaira Tiburones,[30] seven-time champions of the Venezuelan Professional Baseball League.

From 2008–10, the Dodgers played the first-ever Major League exhibition in China,[31] hosted the finals of the World Baseball Classic[32] and traveled to Taiwan to play a two-city tour against a team of All-Stars from the Chinese Professional Baseball League.[33]

The Dodgers are scheduled to open the 2014 Major League season with two games in Sydney, Australia, against the Arizona Diamondbacks.[34] The Dodgers will be the "visiting" team in those games to be played at the Sydney Cricket Ground.

Combined career as AGM and GM[edit]

Colletti has been a top front office executive — either an assistant general manager (AGM) or general manager (GM) — continuously since 1997 with two clubs, the San Francisco Giants and Los Angeles Dodgers. Only seven other current GMs[35] have served continuously, either as an AGM or a GM, from 1997-2013. Of the eight current GMs who have served continuously for the past 17 seasons as assistant general manager or general manager, only Brian Cashman of the New York Yankees has a higher winning percentage.

Three other current GMs have come close to serving continuously in senior team-building positions. Doug Melvin missed out in 2002 when he served as a special consultant for the Boston Red Sox between stints as the GM of the Texas Rangers and Milwaukee Brewers. Terry Ryan of the Minnesota Twins stepped down as GM after the 2007 to become a senior advisor and resumed his GM duties in 2011. Kevin Towers spent the 2010 season as a special assistant to Cashman in New York between reigns as GM in San Diego and Arizona.

In the 17 years that Colletti has been either an assistant GM or GM, his teams have made the playoffs eight times. Four other times his teams were eliminated either on the last day of the season or the second-to-last day of the season.

Current GMs in 2013 and their records building winners as AGM and/or GM from 1997-2013
Regular Season W-L Pct. Playoffs 1st Place Pennants WS Titles
Brian Cashman 1645-1106 .598 14 12 6 4
Ned Colletti 1502-1250 .546 8 7 1 0
Frank Wren 1486-1266 .540 10 7 1 1
Walt Jocketty 1476-1276 .536 9 7 2 1
Brian Sabean 1468-1284 .533 6 5 3 2
Billy Beane 1461-1291 .531 7 6 0 0
Terry Ryan * 13523-1399 .492 6 6 0 0
Doug Melvin ** 1278-1313 .493 4 3 0 0
Kevin Towers*** 1273-1320 .491 4 4 1 0
Dan O'Dowd 1335-1419 .485 5 3 1 0
Dave Dombrowski 1306-1447 .474 4 3 3 2
  • = Ryan was senior advisor for Twins 2008-10
    • = Melvin was special consultant to Red Sox in 2002
      • = Towers was special assistant to the Yankees in 2010

Charity and community work[edit]

Colletti is active in several community and charity efforts in Los Angeles. He and the Dodgers have partnered with Guide Dogs of America to sponsor lifelong working partners for the visually impaired. In October 2011, Colletti joined radio personality Peter Tilden and Colletti's friends from the band Chicago, who played a benefit concert that raised funds for Guide Dogs of America and the Foundation for Fighting Blindness.[36]

In 2009, Colletti received a Humanitarian Award from A Place Called Home, located in South Central Los Angeles, which provides at-risk youth with a secure, positive environment. Colletti funds six scholarships annual through A Place Called Home. See Fox Sports West report On Oct. 23, 2012, the Los Angeles City College Foundation honored Colletti for his work with youth.[37]

Colletti also joined the actors Tim Robbins and Helen Mirren to raise nearly $70,000 in 2011 and 2012 for Get Lit, a city program designed to provide youth with opportunities to develop an appreciation for literature, writing, reading and poetry.[38]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Schulman, Harry. "Durham will face challenge". San Francisco Chronicle, February 13, 2008. Retrieved February 13, 2008.
  2. ^ Shaikin, Bill (November 17, 2005). "New Dodger GM Brings Experience To The Plate". Los Angeles Times. 
  3. ^ "Fishel Award". Baseball Almanac. 
  4. ^ Associated Press. "Dodgers hire Colletti for general manager post". Retrieved 3 September 2013. 
  5. ^ Colletti, Ned. "Los Angeles Dodgers Executives". Retrieved 13 March 2012. 
  6. ^ Dilbeck, Steve. "Dodgers complete turnaround, win NL West on A.J. Ellis homer, 7-6". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 20 September 2013. 
  7. ^ Dodgers.com. "Dodgers Post-Season Results". Retrieved 8 October 2013. 
  8. ^ Shaikin and Helene Elliott, Bill. "Dodgers owner Frank McCourt, wife Jamie separate". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 20 October 2009. 
  9. ^ Nightengale, Bob (April 20, 2011). "MLB ousts McCourt, takes over Dodgers' day-to-day operations". USA Today. Retrieved April 21, 2011. 
  10. ^ "Los Angeles Dodgers Attendance Records". Baseball Almanac. Retrieved September 12, 2013. 
  11. ^ "Dodgers Named Topps Organization of the Year". dodgers.com. 
  12. ^ "Ned Colletti General Manager". mlb.com. 
  13. ^ Hernandez, Dylan (July 25, 2012). "Dodgers acquire Hanley Ramirez in stunning deal with Marlins". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved December 13, 2012. 
  14. ^ Angert, Alex. "Dodgers land reliever League from Seattle". MLB.com. Retrieved December 13, 2012. 
  15. ^ Hernandez, Dylan (July 31, 2012). "Dodgers acquire Shane Victorino". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 13 December 2012. 
  16. ^ Markazi, Arash. "Dodgers Acquire Joe Blanton". MLB.com. Retrieved December 13, 2012. 
  17. ^ Hernandez, Dylan; Steve Dilbeck (August 25, 2012). "Adrian Gonzalez trade completed; a Dodgers-Red Sox blockbuster". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 13 December 2012. 
  18. ^ Shaughnessy, Dan (August 25, 2012). "Blockbuster Red Sox trade signifies end of failed era". Boston Globe. Retrieved December 13, 2012. 
  19. ^ Hernandez, Dylan (December 9, 2012). "Ryu Hyun-jin signs with Dodgers". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved December 13, 2012. 
  20. ^ Gurnick, Ken. "Zack Greinke's six-year deal with Dodgers finalized". MLB.com. Retrieved January 15, 2013. 
  21. ^ Justice, Richard. "Young gives loaded Dodgers even more options Trade for veteran an example of GM Colletti constantly trying to improve club". MLB.com. 
  22. ^ Baseball-Reference.com. "Juan Uribe Statistics". Retrieved October 9, 2013. 
  23. ^ Hernandez, Dylan. "Dodgers defeat Atlanta, win NLDS thanks to the power of Juan Uribe". Retrieved October 9, 2013. 
  24. ^ Plunkett, Bill. "Dodgers Trade Izturis for Greg Maddux". Orange County Register. 
  25. ^ Hernandez, Dylan (August 19, 2008). "Dodgers re-arm as Maddux re-ups". Los Angeles Times. 
  26. ^ "Dodgers Send Bradley to Oakland". Associated Press. 
  27. ^ Peltz, Jim. "Dodgers' Matt Kemp signs historic $160-million contract". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved November 18, 2011. 
  28. ^ Snyder, Matt. "Dodgers, Kershaw agree to two-year contract". CBSsports.com. Retrieved February 17, 2012. 
  29. ^ Jackson, Tony. "Source: Andre Ethier agrees to deal". ESPNlosangeles.com. Retrieved June 12, 2012. 
  30. ^ Russo, Billy (November 19, 2009). "Dodgers-Tiburones Fusionan Objetivos". El Universal. 
  31. ^ MacLeod, Calum (March 16, 2008). "Padres Top Dodgers as MLB Wraps China Series". USA Today. 
  32. ^ Shaikin, Bill (July 18, 2008). "It'll Be Dodgers' World". Los Angeles Times. 
  33. ^ Huang, Paul (March 15, 2010). "LA Dodgers Thump Taiwan All-Stars". Taipei Times. 
  34. ^ Hernandez, Dylan. "Dodgers, Diamondbacks to open 2014 season in Australia". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved September 3, 2013. 
  35. ^ "List of Current Major League Baseball General Managers". Baseball-Reference.com. 
  36. ^ Mitchell, Gail. "Backbeat: Chicago Rocks Charity Concert". Retrieved March 13, 2012. 
  37. ^ "LACC Foundation 2012 Gala". 
  38. ^ "Get Lit Fundraiser: A GIANT SUCCESS". 
Sporting positions
Preceded by
Paul DePodesta
Los Angeles Dodgers General Manager
2005–present
Succeeded by
current