The White Sox are going to officially introduce Chris Getz as the new senior vice president/general manager at 3:30 p.m. CT this afternoon, but they opened the coronation with a press release that tells you everything you need to know about Jerry Reinsdorf’s priorities.
“Chris brings a wealth of knowledge and experience within our organization to this role,” said White Sox chairman Jerry Reinsdorf. “Most importantly, he knows our players, both at the major league level and in our system, knows our staff and is familiar with all aspects of our baseball operations department.
“Chris has impressed me greatly over the past seven years,” Reinsdorf said. “In our conversations together this season, I have become energized by his vision, approach and sense of what this organization needs to become competitive again. With his existing knowledge of the organization, top to bottom, I believe his leadership will provide us with the quickest path forward to our goal, a consistently successful baseball team that competes and plays the game the right way. He will re-energize this organization.”
It was nice of Reinsdorf to immediately eliminate all benefit of the doubt for Getz. This isn’t to say that Getz won’t represent an improvement over Kenny Williams and Rick Hahn. He might be good for a while, or he might get incredibly lucky once or twice and achieve the same thing.
But Reinsdorf turned the pretext of the entire idea of a “search” into the marquee, and that’s what so depressing.
“wealth of knowledge and experience within our organization”
“is familiar with all aspects of our baseball operations department”
If those were the requirements, then Getz is the only guy who could get the White Sox GM job. The problem is that the White Sox GM job is the only GM job Getz could get. He has seven years of experience … for a terrible organization. One of the reasons the organizational is terrible is that they received some of the league’s worst returns from Getz’s department. If Reinsdorf is “impressed greatly” by Getz, it’s not for baseball reasons. Reinsdorf can’t point to anything Getz has done, so he chooses to emphasize what Getz might do. That’s what Pedro Grifol does by emphasizing the genesis of the origin of the building of the foundation of a culture, so you can understand why they get along so famously.
I pretty much assumed Getz was the guy since Bob Nightengale reported it, because I learned my lesson about hoping for better from Reinsdorf after the hiring of Tony La Russa. But the sliver of my brain allowed to maintain an alternative outcome imagined a scenario where Getz pushed for an overthrow, not realizing that he would be nearly as unpopular as Williams and Hahn once people had time and reason to examine his record, rather than lumping him in with the rest of the thoroughly broken system.
We do get that experience, but the hire still happened, and Sox fans are left to hope that Getz is the rare mutineer who actually knows what he’s doing, and not just the warped product of a demented chain of command who schemed his way to power, and the ship is a secondary concern. That his department oversaw the hirings and firings of Omar Vizquel and Wes Helms don’t suggest that he was the reasonable man in an unreasonable world. He’s more likely just a 40-year-old face for an 87-year-old set of problems.