ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) The Los Angeles Angels have chosen Arizona Diamondbacks executive Jerry Dipoto to be their new general manager, a person with knowledge of the hire told The Associated Press on Friday.
The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the Angels haven’t formally announced the hiring. The club will hold a news conference about its GM position Saturday, waiting until the conclusion of the World Series.
The 43-year-old Dipoto spent the past six seasons in Arizona’s front office, serving as interim GM in 2010 and sticking with the club after Arizona hired Kevin Towers for the full-time job in September 2010. He also worked for the Red Sox during their run to the 2004 World Series title.
Fox Sports first reported Dipoto’s hiring.
Angels GM Tony Reagins left the club two days after Los Angeles missed the playoffs for the second straight season with one of the majors’ highest payrolls, finishing 10 games behind Texas in the AL West. Owner Arte Moreno characterized Reagins’ departure as voluntary, but also said in a news release that “a change was needed.”
Los Angeles has made six of the past 10 postseasons, but has missed the playoffs twice for the first time since veteran manager Mike Scioscia’s first two years with the club in 2000-01. The Angels won their only World Series title in 2002, kicking off the most successful decade in franchise history.
But Moreno has paid top dollar for the Angels’ success since acquiring the club in May 2003, and he’s looking for a better return on his investment. Los Angeles began last season with the majors’ fourth-highest payroll at $139 million, but finished 86-76 behind the two-time AL champion Rangers.
Moreno interviewed a wide array of candidates, including former Mets general manager Omar Minaya, former Dodgers GM Dan Evans and former Dodgers assistant GM Kim Ng, along with Yankees executives Billy Eppler and Damon Oppenheimer.
Dipoto pitched eight seasons in the big leagues with Cleveland, the Mets and Colorado, going 27-24 before retiring with a neck injury. He served as the Rockies’ director of player personnel in 2005 before joining the Diamondbacks along with Josh Byrnes, Arizona’s former GM who took over as the Padres’ GM on Wednesday.
Dipoto played a role in the Diamondbacks’ unlikely rise to the NL West title this season by swinging two notable trades last year. He sent three-time All-Star starter Dan Haren to the Angels for a package of four pitchers, including steady starter Joe Saunders and top prospect Tyler Skaggs, and he traded Edwin Jackson to the Chicago White Sox for Daniel Hudson, who won 16 games last season.
Dipoto also interviewed for the GM job with the Baltimore Orioles.
The Angels haven’t hired a major executive from outside their organization for several years. Reagins began his career with Los Angeles as an intern in 1991, eventually rising to become Bill Stoneman’s successor after the 2007 season.
After Reagins’ departure, Los Angeles also parted ways with assistant general manager Ken Forsch and special assistant Gary Sutherland, Reagins’ top two lieutenants.
Updated October 28, 2011