Sources: Billy Eppler is new Mets manager

Billy Eppler is finalizing a deal to be the new general manager of the New York Mets, sources confirmed to ESPN’s Jeff Passan on Monday night.

Eppler, 46, was previously the general manager of the Los Angeles Angels and spent 10 years with the New York Yankees, moving up to assistant general manager.

The deal with Eppler ends a highly publicized search by the Mets for a new general manager.

The team fired interim general manager Zack Scott on November 1, two months after he was arrested on drunk driving charges. Scott was promoted to the job in January when Jared Porter was fired after less than 40 days on the job following revelations that he sent sexually explicit text messages and pictures to a reporter in 2016 while working for the Chicago Cubs.

Speaking last week, Mets President Sandy Alderson said that several candidates for the position were unable to obtain permission from their current clubs to interview, while others declined because they were too personally or professionally comfortable where they were.

Alderson had said that he believed the biggest impediment to the club’s pursuit of traction was the focus created by the New York market.

That, however, shouldn’t be a problem for Eppler, who has long-standing ties to the city.

Born and raised in San Diego, he started as a scout with the Colorado Rockies before joining the Yankees in a similar role in 2004. For the next 11 years, Eppler graduated from scout to scout director and assistant general manager under Brian Cashman. and built a solid reputation throughout the industry, leading to several interviews with GM before landing the job with the Angels.

He was the general manager of Los Angeles for five years until he was fired at the end of the 2020 COVID-19 shortened season.

During his time in the role, Eppler hired Shohei ohtani, negotiated the second extension of Mike trout, helped attract Anthony Rendon and made important changes that led to Justin upton and Andrelton simmons.

But the Angels suffered losing seasons in the five years under Eppler, in large part due to a poor pitching staff. The only manager selected by Eppler, Brad Ausmus, was fired after the team lost 90 games in 2019, a year marked by the sudden death of Tyler Skaggs.

Eppler, 46, was hired with then-manager Mike Scioscia heading into the final three years of his contract and was fired after Joe Maddon concluded his first season as manager, even though his option for the following season had been chosen.

Los Angeles’ exhausted juvenile system made some progress under Eppler’s supervision, notably with the selection of Jo adell and Brandon Marsh. But Eppler, like Jerry Dipoto before him, struggled to maintain the line between building sustainability and winning right away, a task he will no doubt take on with the Mets.

After staying out of the 2021 season, Eppler was ready to enter the world of agents, the same one that produced former Mets general manager Brodie Van Wagenen. Eppler was announced in September along with Jim Murray and Michael Stival, formerly of Excel Sports Management, as new partners at WME who would lead its baseball representation business.

MLB Network first reported that Eppler and the Mets were getting closer to a deal.

Information from ESPN’s Alden González was used in this report.


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Sources: Billy Eppler is new Mets manager