Do the Dodgers need a GM to have success?

The Los Angeles Dodgers named former Major League Baseball relief pitcher Brandon Gomes of Fall River, MA as their general manager on Tuesday according to Mike Axisa of CBS Sports. The hiring of Gomes by the Dodgers is an interesting one because the franchise has not had an actual general manager since Farhan Zaidi of Sudbury, Ontario, Canada resigned with Los Angeles to become the president of baseball operations for the San Francisco Giants on November 6, 2018.

It should be noted that Gomes has been a key member of the Dodgers organization over the last five years. Among his roles have been pitching coordinator, director of player development, vice president and assistant general manager. So with the new title, Gomes will apparently be doing a lot of the same work he has been doing over the last year, but with more responsibility attached to his player personnel decisions.

The Dodgers have had strong success the last three years without a GM, which leads one to wonder why they needed to fill the position in the first place. There is a great motto in sport–“if it ain’t broken, don’t fix it.” This could apply to the Dodgers situation. In the last three years without an actual GM, the Dodgers have had a regular season record of 255 wins and 129 losses for a winning percentage of .664. Oh yes, they won the 2020 World Series as they beat the Tampa Bay Rays in six games.

As a player, Gomes was a relief pitcher for five years with the Rays from 2011 to 2015. In five seasons, he pitched in 173 games, and had a record of 11 wins and 12 losses. In 167 innings pitched, Gomes gave up 151 hits, 78 earned runs, and 61 walks, along with 144 strikeouts, an earned run average of 4.20, and a WHIP of 1.27.

Now Gomes’ role will be to manage a team who had a payroll in 2021 of $271 million, the most in baseball! Every move Gomes will make will be scrutinized to the fullest to say the least.