The Tampa Bay Rays have lost another top executive to a team embroiled in a cheating scandal.
The Tampa Bay Rays saw division-rivals, Boston Red Sox win the World Series in 2018. Last season, the Rays were eliminated in the ALDS in five games by the Houston Astros.
Both teams were engrossed in the sign-stealing scandal this past off-season.
Both teams lost their managers and the Astros lost their general manager. After the Rays’ lost to Astros in the ALDS last year, the Red Sox hired away the Rays’ Senior Vice President of Baseball Operations, Chaim Bloom.
Now, the Astros have taken their current Vice President of Baseball Operations, just over three months later.
James Click, 42, will assume the general manager’s duties for a team that just hired Dusty Baker as their new manager. Click will take the reigns on a team that embraces analytics like the Rays, but operates on a much larger budget.
Rays’ owner, Stu Sternberg had this to say about the loss of James Click,
"“The departure of another talented, senior Rays executive is difficult,” Tampa Bay owner Stuart Sternberg said in a statement. “That difficulty is compounded by the timing of the departure, only days from the opening of spring training.”“A large number of former Rays staffers now populate senior team positions across the league. Most recently, two of the past three World Series winning teams, against whom we compete directly, have reached beyond their organizations and into our ranks to fill their top baseball operations positions,” he said. “We have great organizational leadership, strong faith in our ability to regenerate, and we have supreme confidence in the men and women who will be stepping up into their newfound opportunities and responsibilities. That is the Rays way. It is who we are, it is what we do.”"
Click will be officially welcomed by the Astros on Tuesday at Minute Maid Park.
Former Tampa Bay, top-level executives can be found all over the league. Here’s a few prominent executives that come to mind: Chaim Bloom with the Boston Red Sox, Andrew Friedman with the Los Angeles Dodgers, and now James Click with the Houston Astros.
With spring training just days away, it’s a huge shakeup for the front office to handle. Click had been with the Rays for the past 14 years. Like Bloom, he has a Bachelor’s degree from Yale. He formerly wrote for Baseball Prospectus and has held four prominent positions within the Tampa Bay organization.
We wish James Click the best of luck with the Houston Astros!