Sandy Alderson, New York Mets
(Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images)

Sandy Alderson’s connection to the Oakland A’s may just lead the New York Mets to their next general manager.

Brodie Van Wagenen hasn’t been fired yet, but that’s not slowing down the rumor mill. Steve Cohen and Sandy Alderson are on the hunt for the New York Mets‘ next general manager and one name stands above the rest — Billy Owens.

In a recent update, Andy Martino of SNY reports that Owens is a “particularly strong candidate” to replace Van Wagenen. Here at ESNY, we believe that Owens is easily the best choice for the job.

Owens is the Oakland Athletics assistant general manager and director of player personnel. He’s considered one of the best scouts in MLB and has a deep understanding of analytics from his time working under the likes of Sandy Alderson, Billy Beane, and David Frost.

It’s that connection with Alderson that is likely fueling Owens’ candidacy. The two have worked together closely over the past two years to continue the A’s strong track record of identifying and developing prospects and bargain free-agent targets.

Owens has been instrumental in the development of the A’s core. He’s been in charge of player personnel for the past 12 seasons. That resumé has him in line for a general manager job in the near future.

Pairing Alderson and Owens together in Queens would mean one thing. Cohen is looking to build a stable winner, not just throw money around. The visions would be one of good drafting, adding strong international free agents, and identifying the right time to go big in free agency. This is a model that seems very similar to the one the Los Angeles Dodgers have perfected.

However, Owens isn’t the only name that’s come up. Martino also notes Tampa Bay Rays special assistant to the general manager Bobby Heck, MLB senior vice president of baseball operations Peter Woodfork, and Arizona Diamondbacks senior vice president and assistant general manager Amiel Sawdaye as potential candidates.

All of the candidates for the job come from teams that value analytics and spending wisely. Owens may have the inside track for the job, but Alderson and Cohen seem to be locked into their idea for the future of the team. Sustainable winning through analytics and development.

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