The Atlanta Braves are set to name Alex Anthopoulos as their new general manager.
The former Toronto Blue Jays general manager and current Dodgers vice president of baseball operations will reportedly end the search for John Coppolella’s replacement. The Braves have yet to announce the hire. The news was first reported by New York Post columnist Joel Sherman and later confirmed by MLB.com’s Mark Bowman.
Anthopoulos, 40, is expected to take over baseball operations with final say on personnel decisions, though John Hart will reportedly remain in his current role as president of baseball operations for the time being.
Confirmed Alex Anthopoulos will be named Braves GM. Though he won’t have the title, Anthopoulos will also likely handle the president of baseball ops duties
— Mark Bowman (@mlbbowman) November 13, 2017
After working his way up through the Expos and Blue Jays’ front offices, Anthopoulos served as Toronto’s GM from 2009 to 2015, piecing together a roster that posted a 489-483 record in the competitive American League East. Anthopoulos was instrumental in acquiring the likes of 2015 American League MVP Josh Donaldson, David Price and Troy Tulowitzki; the franchise also brought in José Bautista and Edwin Encarnación during his time as assistant GM to mentor J.P. Ricciardi. A panel of 47 major-league executives tabbed him as Sporting News‘ Executive of the Year in 2015.
In October 2015, he declined the Blue Jays’ five-year contract extension and eventually landed in Los Angeles, where he helped build the 2017 National League champions.
Though Kansas City Royals general manager Dayton Moore, a John Schuerholz protégé, was linked to the GM vacancy from the very beginning, Atlanta was never granted a formal interview and Moore elected to not sever ties with the organization he led to the 2015 World Series title.
Anthopoulos steps into the position vacated by John Coppolella, who resigned in early October amid MLB’s investigation in player acquisition practices both domestic and international. Hart and Coppolella built arguably the top farm system in baseball — a deep well of young talent, including consensus superstar outfield prospect Ronald Acuña, that made the job opening appealing for a wide range of candidates. Even with possible sanctions stemming from the MLB investigation pending, it’s unlikely a well-established name like Anthopoulos leaves his high-level position with Los Angeles without inheriting a wealth of talent.