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Announced general manager Alex Anthopoulos would not return. [10/29]

Less than a week after the Blue Jays' first playoff run in more than 20 years came to an end, the team's architect is on his way out the door.

Rumors explaining Anthopoulos' surprising departure center on his relationship with incoming team president Mark Shapiro and range from a power struggle to philosophical disagreements; if you believe the grapevine, Shapiro "scolded" the baseball operations staff for trading too many top prospects. Anthopoulos' relationship with Shapiro was apparently so icy that he passed on a five-year extension en route to free agency.

Evaluating Anthopoulos' tenure in Toronto is tricky. If you had to sum up Anthopoulos in a sentence, you'd probably arrive at something like: good, not great executive with a creatively aggressive side that lends itself to a big market. It's inarguable that he surrendered a lot of young talent as he attempted to assemble a winner. Yet the difference between Anthopoulos and your typical myopic GM is that most of the veterans he acquired were more than short-term rentals (David Price being the exception). Obviously that doesn't make it easier for Blue Jays fans to see Noah Syndergaard and Travis d'Arnaud playing big roles on another contender, but it does justify those moves to some extent; ditto for the Jays' playoff berth. (Besides, you have to remember that Anthopoulos and his staff are the ones who oversaw the acquisition of many of those prospects in the first place.)

The questions now are who will fill Anthopoulos' spot (perhaps assistant GM Tony LaCava?), where will Anthopoulos land (perhaps in Boston or New York, where all the ex-GM land?), and how will this impact the Blue Jays' offseason plans? We'll find out the answers soon enough.

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Reportedly will name Don Mattingly manager. [10/29]

Here you have the least surprising managerial appointment of the winter, given that the Marlins' rumored interest in Mattingly dates back to September (at the latest). With Mattingly moving on last week from the Dodgers, it was only a matter of time before he landed in Miami.

Should you envy Mattingly for escaping the scrutiny that comes with the L.A. market, or pity him for taking a job under Jeffrey Loria? Maybe a little of both. That Mattingly's moves are less likely to be second-guessed in Miami is a seeming positive for someone whose entire managerial career has been spent on the hot seat—not to mention for someone whose in-game strategy is the weakest part of his skill set. As for the second part, you figure few people are more qualified than Mattingly is to deal with an eccentric owner. After all, this feller has played for George Steinbrenner and managed under Frank McCourt, so he probably has an idea of the wackiness that awaits him.

Still, it's tough to see Mattingly completing his four-year contract. Loria can claim to be the world's biggest Donnie Baseball fan, but it's possible the Marlins are introducing a new skipper around this time next year. When Loria gets the itch to make a change, nothing can stop him from scratching it—not even preexisting commitments. Hence his dismissals of Ozzie Guillen and Mike Redmond, each coming within 13 months of signing them to multi-year contracts. Loria just doesn't care.

For however long Mattingly survives under Loria, he should be a positive clubhouse presence who could excel with a younger, presumably less-entitled roster. Even so, Mattingly isn't a miracle worker, so it's hard to see him winning enough games to remain employed for more than a year or two.

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Reportedly will name Andy Green manager. [10/29]

Entering Thursday, most reports had the Padres picking either former Twins skipper Ron Gardenhire or Pirates third-base coach Rick Sofield as their new manager. So much for that noise.

Instead A.J. Preller and the Padres settled on Green, the Diamondbacks' third-base coach. Although Green is fairly young (he turned 38 in July) and relatively new to the coaching side of things (he last played in 2010), he has more on-the-bench experience than most recent hires. He began managing in the minors in 2011 and has subsequently worked his way up the ladder: from the Arizona League to the Pioneer League to the Southern League to the major leagues (albeit for one year as a third-base coach).

Though it's unclear how well Green's managing skills will translate to the majors, he is "regarded by his peers as well-spoken, intelligent and confident, [and] is also adept at advanced metrics," according to's Corey Brock. Another thing that's unclear is how Preller intends to attack the offseason. The one thing that is for certain is that Preller should know what he wants in a manager. Green is Preller's third in about five months' time, provided you include interim skipper Pat Murphy. Compared to Preller's quick hooks with Bud Black and Murphy, Green should get ample time to prove his worth.

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Reportedly will name Bud Black manager. [10/28]

On paper, this looks like a nifty hire.

Black was dismissed in mid-June following eight-plus seasons spent on the Padres bench, during which his teams seldom posted records that reflected his sparkling reputation within the industry. In fact, the Padres ended four of his eight full seasons with win totals in the 75-to-77 range. Depending on your perspective, that's either an impressive accomplishment—the Padres lacked talent and had constant turnover at the general manager and ownership levels—or an unmistakable sign of mediocrity.

Nonetheless, Black appears to be a better fit for the Nationals than Matt Williams ever was. His California cool demeanor ought to appeal to the Nationals clubhouse the way it did the Padres, calming what was an unsettled bunch late in the season. Additionally, Black should be an improvement in the dugout. There's reason to believe he's among the best bullpen handlers in the game, and he's shown an understanding of all the advanced concepts that causes us outsiders to go gaga—be it shifting, running a platoon, or assembling a lineup. Add it all together, and he should be a perceivable upgrade.

Given the talent on the Nationals roster, a few years in D.C. could be just what Black needs to accumulate a record more befitting of his good name.

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Detroit is looking for a GM, I'd love for them to get him. I don't know how AA would feel about living in Detroit after his life so far in the great cities of Montreal and Toronto. I say that as Torontonian (native New Yorker married to a Montrealer) with roots in Detroit and see it having a modest comeback. He works so hard, though, it may not be much of a factor. Detroit does have nice suburbs and it is only a four hour drive to T.O.

Anyway, I've always felt Anthopoulos was an excellent GM despite many of his moves not working out as hoped. Hard luck, but finally things went his way this summer.

Best of all has been the strength of Toronto's farm system. How much credit for that goes to AA, I don't know. It might mean that the Blue Jays still have the most important front office talent in house. That might be true and Anthopoulos might take the best of that talent with him.

Of course, he doesn't have a job yet. How nice of him to leave right away giving up his 5 year offer without knowing if he will even find another GM job. He might not be in a position to take anyone with him.
Applause for the headline writer.