Tampa Bay Rays executive Chaim Bloom


Reports: Mets Interview Rays' Bloom, Interested In Indians' Chernoff

October 11, 2018 - 1:46 pm

By WFAN.com

The Mets have reportedly spoken to about a half-dozen general manager candidates, including an interview Wednesday with Tampa Bay Rays executive Chaim Bloom.

Cleveland Indians GM Mike Chernoff is also expected to interview, multiple sources told MLB.com's Anthony DiComo. 

The Mets have also reportedly spoken to or will speak with Cardinals executive Gary LaRocque, former Brewers GM Doug Melvin, MLB exec Kim Ng and Nationals special assistant De Jon Watson. Brewers assistant GM Matt Arnold has also been linked to the Mets, MLB.com reported.

New York is also intrigued by a couple of outside-the-box candidates, Brodie Van Wagenen and Casey Close, multiple reports said. It's not clear if the Mets have formally spoken to either.

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Chief operating officer Jeff Wilpon and assistant GM John Ricco are having sit-down interviews as well as less formal phone conversations with candidates. The Mets are expected to wrap up their first round of interviews next week and then schedule follow-up talks with selected finalists. 

The Mets hope to have their new GM in place before the MLB general managers' meetings begin Nov. 6.   

First hired as an intern, Bloom, 35, has been with Tampa Bay for 14 years and was promoted to senior vice president of baseball operations in November 2016. The Yale graduate, along with GM Erik Neander, oversee all functions within baseball operations. The Rays, who are coming off a surprising 90-72 season, are known for their emphasis on analytics.

Chernoff worked his way up through the ranks of the Indians' front office and was promoted to general manager in October 2015. Cleveland has reached the playoffs each of his three years as GM, including winning the American League pennant in 2016.

Chernoff is the son of WFAN vice president of programming Mark Chernoff.

SNY's Andy Martino reported Thursday that people who know Chernoff are "skeptical right now that he would leave Indians for Mets." Martino added that Chernoff is receiving interest from a few teams. 

LaRocque has overseen player development in St. Louis since 2014. Before that, he was a senior adviser to player development and a senior special assistant to the GM with the Cardinals. From 1998 to 2007, LaRocque worked for the Mets in a variety of senior positions -- as scouting director, assistant general manager and vice president of player development and scouting, and vice president of professional scouting.

Melvin, 66, is currently the Brewers' president of baseball operations. He was the team's GM for 13 years. Milwaukee is currently in the National League Championship Series and also reached the NLCS under Melvin in 2011. 

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Ng, 49, is Major League's Baseball's senior vice president for baseball oeprations. She has worked in the front offices of the White Sox, Yankees and Dodgers. If hired, Ng would become the first female general manager in any major sport.

Watson, a special assistant to Nationals GM Mike Rizzo, is a 32-year veteran of major league front offices, which also recently includes two seasons as the vice president of baseball operations with the Arizona Diamondbacks.

Arnold, 39, is the Brewers' assistant GM, a position he has held the past three years. He previously spent a decade with the Rays, first as a professional scout and eventually as director of pro scouting.

Van Wagenen, the lead baseball agent at CAA, represents Mets players Yoenis Cespedes, Todd Frazier and Tim Tebow. At Excel Sports Management, Close has represented Derek Jeter, Clayton Kershaw and others.

Mets general manager Sandy Alderson has been on medical leave since June while he focuses on his battle with cancer. He is not expected to return next season. 

Assistant general manager John Ricco and special assistants to the GM JP Ricciardi and Omar Minaya have split the duties in running the franchise's baseball operations in Alderson's absence.

The Mets finished 77-85 this season, 13 games behind the NL East champion Atlanta Braves.