Posted on 15 April 2010 by Wanna Be Sports Guy
With both the 2010 MLB and NFL drafts on the horizon, it’s time to consider the men who make the calls. For every Brian Cashman, A.J. Smith, and Theo Epstein, there is an executive who has turned the tides against the men he’s been set to protect. Here, in brief, are a few of the worst General Managers in the history of sports.
#3: M. Donald Grant, New York Mets
Really, this list could have been populated with NBA-only execs. But that wouldn’t be fair to the bumbling endured by the fans of America’s other major sports. And speaking of bumbling, no one did it quite like New York’s M. Donald Grant. He managed in the dawning of the era of free agency, and refused to give in to most players’ demands. He would trade away nearly anyone due to see an increase in salary, such as Nolan Ryan and Tom Seaver. If not for his shot-in-the-dark Miracle Mets of ‘69, he would probably rank higher on this list.
#2: Elgin Baylor, Los Angeles Clippers
Say what you will about cheap ownership. Just because Baylor was handcuffed by a stingy owner doesn’t excuse a career record of 619-1153. That’s 21 seasons’ worth of horrendous, hellacious losing. He had only two winning seasons throughout his tenure with the Clippers, though one of them managed to earn him an awards as the NBA’S “Executive of the Year.” Imagine the sarcasm with which it must have been presented.
#1: Matt Millen, Detroit Lions
Say what you will about Harry Frazee and the sale of Babe Ruth to the Yankees. The worst transaction is sports history may be the five-year contract extension given to Matt Millen by Lions ownership. In fact, this one really isn’t even all that close. As Johah Keri say on ESPN’s Page 2, “FIRE MILLEN” signs immediatley began appearing “at Lions, Red Wings, Pistons, Michigan and Michigan State games, at WrestleMania, across the country. A Detroit radio station organized the ‘Millen Man March’ after Millen’s contract extension was announced in December 2005. For years, fans of rival teams held up ‘Keep Millen’ signs.” He spent years utterly destroying the Lions’ roster, due in large part to his total ineptitude in the NFL Draft (where he drafted more wide receivers than any GM in history, most of whom failed miserably). Bottom line – His career record is 31-84. The astonishing part is that he was allowed to continue for as long as he did.
- Taylor Maxwell
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