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J.P. Ricciardi fired

Oct 3, 2009, 11:21 AM EDT

Kevin Towers getting fired is a surprise.  This, not so much:

The Toronto Blue Jays have fired general manager J.P. Ricciardi. Interim CEO Paul Beeston announced the move on Saturday, saying he felt it was time for a change.

Ricciardi has been in charge of the team since Nov. 14, 2001, posting four winning seasons and four losing ones. It
was a controversial reign with poor free agent signings and off-field
missteps overshadowing some productive drafts and other good moves.

His greatest failing was an inability to find a way past the Yankees and Red Sox and into the postseason.

I’d argue that his second greatest failing was his utter inability to communicate with people, including the press and his underlings.  When J.P. started, he had a good team of people around him, including Baseball Prospectus/ESPN’s Keith Law. Slowly but surely he began to alienate and drive away people like Law and others within the organization. In the past few years he has routinely thrown Jays’ players and personnel under the bus as the team came crashing down around him. 

People will cite the Yankees and Red Sox as the Jays’ biggest hurdle, but the fact of the matter is that the Jays are worse off in 2009 on their own terms than they were in 2001 when Ricciardi was hired.

  1. Ned - Oct 3, 2009 at 11:51 AM

    I agree that Ricciardi was a bad communicator…his other failing was overspending on a number of players (Wells, Ryan, Frank Thomas, Rios)…the Jays will be paying for those (especially Wells) for years to come…let’s hope they get a GM who really knows how to develop players (and won’t say dumb things to the press).

  2. Phillip McDonald - Oct 3, 2009 at 1:04 PM

    It was time for a change. I hope they keep Haladay & rebuild the farm system.

  3. UB - Oct 4, 2009 at 11:03 AM

    Sometimes you have to steal to get what you want.

  4. UB - Oct 4, 2009 at 11:36 AM

    If Rogers isn’t willing to pay more for Players and Good Head Office Per’s…Then nobody is going to want to watch the AAA caliber Jays.Beeston is over rated.He only did something when the Jays were getting 50.000 at the Park.To show he is the man that everyone has made him out to be, sign on for a few years and see what you can do with little market money.Bring back the true Icon of Jays Land. Pat Gillick.The Jays have a good nucleolus of players.Don’t be stupid and let Barajas,Scuttero,Doc,Ruis,Johnny Mac and others go.Poor Cito, we as fans only see or hear what the boob tube tells us so we really don’t know what really goes on at the Zoo.Did someone miss a start or someone batting .225 have to sit on the bench for a few games.Everybody pounding Wells all the time. Get off of him. He is one of the best defensive Center Fielders of all time. His bat isn’t as good as it was, but show me another player,with his abilities, that would be willing to play in TO.All these cuts that the Jays Organization make, how much money do they save there? I’m sure Baseball Teams have way too many top brass people.What a waste of money. Give someone a job that they have to multitask and cut back on the top dogs.Earn your money.I don’t even know from working in positions of dealing with millions of dollars, why you need anymore then a couple of top brass people.
    Get a grip Jays, or Toronto will have another cement monster, like Montreal.

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