Baseball America recently had a feature on “Rating the best GMs in the business.” Here’s some of the things said therein about Brian Cashman:
DEALING WITH OWNERSHIP
A’s GM Billy Beane joined many others in admiring Brian Cashman (Yankees): “It’s a huge undertaking being GM of the Yankees. No one else has to deal with a club president who negotiated a labor contract, a boss who’s the highest-profile owner in American sports, in the biggest city in America, and completely separate baseball operations in Florida for all those years. For Brian to handle it this deftly, you have to be pretty Machiavellian.”
Using the press not just to deliver messages to a demanding public but also to disseminate and receive information is a fine art, with BRIAN CASHMAN (Yankees) being rated the master for handling this in New York’s hurricane. “Honesty, integrity, volume,” Nationals GM Jim Bowden said. “He’s extremely impressive.” Added Astros counterpart Tim Purpura, “I don’t know how he does it. Brian is very honest and very direct. There’s no dancing around. When he can’t answer he says he can’t. That’s the only way to do it, particularly with that kind of volume in that city.”
An honest Machiavellian? Isn’t that like a checked swing?
OK, joking aside, I think most would agree that Cashman should get high marks for dealing with the complexity of the Yankees management chain and the New York media. I do think that the jury is still out on his “roster-management” work.
In any event, Brian has never snuck out of Yankee Stadium in a gorilla suit like Boston’s boy-wonder did once at Fenway. That should tell you that there are a lot worse guys who could be the Yankees G.M. right now.