Call me crazy, but I’m pretty happy that Paul Beeston has signed on as president and CEO of the Toronto Blue Jays for the next three years.
A quick look through Jays blogs seems to show a general lack of enthusiasm for Beeston’s no-longer-interim position. The main arguments against him appear to be that he didn’t do enough to help the team this year and that this all but guarantees the return of Beeston’s good buddy, The Cito Gaston, as team manager next season.
Personally, I’m willing to give Beeston the benefit of the doubt on what happened with the team this season. I’m going to assume that he really was searching for a new president and that all questionable moves he may have made ($80-million payroll instead of $100 million?) were in an attempt to get affairs in order for the new person whenever he started.
The Cito thing does scare me. The Cito, as is well established at this point, is not a man who can hack it in today’s game. He can’t communicate with the players. He can’t manage lineups or make in-game decisions — unless you count doing nothing as a decision. But maybe Cito staying isn’t as set in stone as it might seem to be.
Jerry Howarth was just on the Bullpen with Mike Hogan (where’d the Tother go? Could it be??) and was asked what Beeston’s appointment means for Cito. The audio’s not up yet, so I can’t give you his exact quote, but it was along the lines of “Cito’s future is far from decided. That’s got to be the toughest decision that Paul and Alex Anthopoulos have to make this off-season, especially after what happened with the players at the end of the season.”
Not that Howarth knows exactly what’s going on in the Jays’ offices, but I’m willing to bet he has a better idea than I do — not that that’s a hard feat to accomplish.
But back to giving Beeston a pass on this season. Or, more accurately, why I’m willing to. When I look at Beeston, I see a guy who’s dedicated to winning (or at least gives the impression that he is), a guy who, of anybody, seems most likely to convince Rogers to loosen the purse strings in terms of payroll and, possibly most importantly, I see a guy who might be able to bring Pat Gillick back to Toronto.