During a 40-minute introductory session with reporters today televised live on MASN, new O’s executive vice president and general manager Mike Elias provided some details on how he will try to duplicate success stories he was previously involved with in St. Louis and Houston.
“We’re going to build an elite talent pipeline,” Elias said. Of the players now in the organization, he said, “There are some future stars in the system and some really good pitchers.”
The soon-to-be 36-year-old Elias did not announce or confirm any new hires or any staff departures. He also said there are “no shortcuts” in rebuilding an organization. But he said he is confident he can do it because he’s been part of doing it before.
He would not put a timetable on hiring a new manager. He said it is something to not rush and he needs to be thorough in his process. But he said he already started doing some background work on candidates and has been tapping into his network of contacts to gain information.
“We want to get the right person for our organization, for our front office, for us for this time and these are thorough processes in talking about a job this big,” Elias said.
Even though Elias was involved in drafting players like Carlos Correa, Lance McCullers Jr. and Alex Bregman for Houston, he seemed very energized to discuss the international market. He said he will attack that right away and pledged to use some of the remaining bonus pool money the Orioles have remaining for signing international amateurs.
“I can tell you that we will be making additions to our international operation over the near term,” said Elias. “But I think part of the Angelos family’s attraction to me and this job is I was a sitting international scouting director. I have current knowledge of the players that are out there and have strong relationships with all of the agents in that market. I can hit the ground running.
“It’s not a matter of how many scouts but who they are, what they are doing and how they’re equipped. ... We’re going to do it the way that we know how to do it well. We are going to be smart about it and we’ll have a great international operation as soon as possible. We’re going to be aggressive with the money that we have.”
During the introduction today at Camden Yards, Elias was flanked by John and Louis Angelos from the Orioles ownership group and they also took reporters’ questions.
John Angelos was asked if Elias will have a budget to work with.
“The general manager has the purview over baseball ops in all respects,” he said. “He puts together the action plan going forward. He puts together the budget and it then fits into the overall financial view of the company. So long as the company is in a good place, which it will be now and into the future, then all the resources will be there to allow the general manager to effectuate any strategy that he puts together and any set of resource and staffing and what not and allocation that he sees fit. So I think we’ll be in a good place there.”
Louis Angelos was asked about the fans and whether they will be on board with this plan.
“From an ownership perspective, this is a time for fans to invest along with us, in the process,” he said. “There’s an exciting potential here. Mike’s deep background in scouting, not only international scouting but amateur scouting, really made quite a difference in the discussions that we had. He’s been through this. But I think this is an exciting time to look at the players that are coming forward. And to learn more about these processes, as you mentioned, the talent that we’ll be looking for not only in quantitative areas, but in scouting and player development to start to revamp certain operations, really all operations. I think that’s exciting for fans to see that evolve and I know it will be for us.”
After his media blitz and answering a lot of questions today, Elias can start to implement his plan not long after.
MASNsports.com’s Roch Kubatko has a lot more about today’s developments at Camden Yards. Click here to read that.