The Baltimore Orioles officially hire Mike Elias as new General Manager
On Friday afternoon, the Baltimore Orioles officially announced former Astros assistant GM Mike Elias as their new head of baseball operations
The Baltimore Orioles have finally announced that Mike Elias will lead the rebuild in Baltimore and become the Orioles’ new Executive Vice President and General Manager. The Orioles will hold a press conference on Monday morning at 11am officially introducing Elias as the head of baseball ops in Baltimore.
For the first time in what feels like forever, the Orioles have made a smart baseball decision by bringing Elias aboard.
Elias spent the last seven years with the Astros, most recently in an assistant GM role. Elias joined an Astros team in 2012 that was coming off three straight 100-loss seasons and helped bring them back from the dead.
He’ll attempt to do the same thing in Baltimore; take the worst team in baseball, build a competent organization from the ground up, and establish the Orioles as a competitor in the American League.
Next steps for Elias include bringing in a number two to work underneath him, and one name being thrown around is Sig Mejdal. Both Mejdal and Elias worked together in St. Louis; Elias helped run the scouting department and Mejdal was a senior quantitative analyst and the director of amateur draft analysis.
After the Cardinals won the 2011 World Series, both Elias and Mejdal left St. Louis and went to Houston. Elias would work his way into the assistant GM role, while Medjal would spearhead the analytics department the Astros are known for today.
If Elias does bring Mejdal onto his staff in Baltimore, the Orioles will be significantly better off because of it. The Orioles are woefully behind the competition in terms of their analytics department; if Elias were to bring in Mejdal, he could help the Orioles build out their research and development department, which appears to be something the Orioles are willing, and wanting, to do.
The Orioles have frequently been mocked for their lack of willingness to spend money on research and development and their analytics department, their lack of an established presence in the international market, and owner Peter Angelos’ inability to distance himself from the baseball operations department.
But with Peter Angelos’ failing health and absence from daily operations came the ability for the Orioles’ baseball operations to make baseball decisions. Without Angelos at the helm, the Orioles finally went into fire-sale mode, moving superstar Manny Machado, Zach Britton, and Kevin Gausman, among others.
Going forward, it seems that John and Louis Angelos will be willing to grant complete autonomy to whomever they place in charge of the Orioles baseball ops department, which was surely a deal-breaker for any candidate considering the Orioles as a destination.
Almost everyone in the Orioles community seems to share the sentiment that we’ll believe that when we see it. But it feels more likely now than it ever did with Peter Angelos in charge. Elias needs to have complete authority when it comes to baseball decisions if the Orioles are to be successful. Until proven otherwise, I’m going to believe that the Orioles grant it to Elias.
Elias could have a few decisions to make as early as Tuesday, as it marks the deadline to add players to the 40-man roster to protect them from eligibility in the rule 5 draft.