The Diamondbacks—who cratered to a 69-93 finish despite spending $206.5 million to sign Zack Greinke and trading top pick Dansby Swanson for righthander Shelby Miller—fired general manager Dave Stewart and manager Chip Hale after just two seasons.
In September 2014, Dave Stewart was hired by Tony La Russa—who had been hired in May of that year as chief baseball officer. In December of that year, the two hired Hale as manager. But in the past two seasons, Arizona is just 148-176.
A change was needed, managing general partner Ken Kendrick said in a news release.
“We are very grateful to Dave and Chip who are widely respected throughout the game of baseball,” Kendrick said. “Ultimately, the results have not been what we had hoped and while that responsibility is shared by all of us, we have decided that a change is necessary. We are still discussing what the appropriate role for Tony La Russa will be going forward.”
La Russa, according to reports, will no longer lead baseball operations and is deciding whether he wants to remain with the Diamondbacks.
Stewart’s contract had an option for 2017 that was supposed to be decided upon in August, but the Diamondbacks let that run until the end of the season. Senior vice president of baseball operations De Jon Watson had the same clause, but the club announced last month he would not be retained.
Hale’s contract ran through 2017.
“Stew and Chip are quality individuals who I consider friends and I respect greatly,” team president and chief executive officer Derrick Hall said. “I thank them for their tireless efforts while wearing our logo on their chests. We will look to move quickly as we turn the page and begin another chapter for this proud franchise.”
Candidates to replace Hale will likely included Triple-A Reno manager Phil Nevin, who’s been rumored as a candidate for the job previously when Kirk Gibson was fired.
La Russa and Stewart have been criticized for the Shelby Miller deal, which not only cost the No. 1 overall pick in 2015 in Swanson, but young righthander Aaron Blair and center fielder Ender Inciarte.
But an injury to Greinke hampered his effectiveness and the loss of center fielder A.J. Pollock because of a fractured elbow could not be foreseen.