MLB: Ranking the decade’s best general managers

ORLANDO, FL - DECEMBER 11: New York Yankees General Manager Brian Cashman speaks at a press conference introducing Giancarlo Stanton during the 2017 Winter Meetings at the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin on Monday, December 11, 2017 in Orlando, Florida. (Photo by Alex Trautwig/MLB via Getty Images)
ORLANDO, FL - DECEMBER 11: New York Yankees General Manager Brian Cashman speaks at a press conference introducing Giancarlo Stanton during the 2017 Winter Meetings at the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin on Monday, December 11, 2017 in Orlando, Florida. (Photo by Alex Trautwig/MLB via Getty Images) /
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(Photo by David Banks/Getty Images)
(Photo by David Banks/Getty Images) /

MLB: Ranking the decade’s best general managers

3. Jed Hoyer, +100.5 games (Padres,2010-2011, Cubs, 2012-19)

It’s hard to discern how much of the Cubs’ improvement should be credited to Hoyer and how much to his boss, Theo Epstein, the team president. Since front offices tend to work best when they work in concert, the debate is probably titular.

A graduate of Wesleyan, Hoyer started out working for Epstein before taking the San Diego GM job.

Hoyer was Epstein’s first hire when Theo signed on following the 2011 season. In San Diego, his first GM stop, he produced mixed results, and those continued in Chicago where his/Epstein’s 2012 impact was -13.3 games.

That was to be expected; it was, after all, a rebuilding season. Hoyer neutralized those talent drain numbers in 2013, and by 2015 was consistently improving the Cubs at a rate exceeding 20 games per season.

In 2016 he and Theo famously brought Chicago’s North Side franchise its first World Series win in more than a century.

Although the Cubs haven’t been back to the World Series since, the long-term core Hoyer put in place – Jon Lester Kris Bryant, Anthony Rizzo – has continued to produce. Since 2015, the average long-term impact of Chicago’s holdover players on team success has exceeded 18 games. That has kept the Cubs more constantly in the pennant churn than at any point in the team’s history since the early 1970s.