Angels hire Billy Eppler to become their 12th general manager

Billy Eppler, left, has been named Angels general manager/Photo courtesy of New York Daily News


The Angels on Sunday night announced they have hired longtime New York Yankees executive Billy Eppler to become their general manager.

Bill Stoneman had been interim general manager after Jerry Dipoto resigned his post in early July after a beef with manager Mike Scioscia.

Eppler had been in the Yankees front office for 11 years, the past four as assistant general manager to general manager Brian Cashman. He also served as vice-president this season. Eppler, 40, is a native of San Diego.

Eppler becomes the 12th general manager in club history. He will report directly to owner Arte Moreno.

“We used a lot of time, energy and research into the decision to fill this very critical position,” Moreno said in a statement.  “We interviewed several quality individuals throughout the process.  In the end, Billy’s experience in the areas of scouting, player development and major-league operations, in addition to his organizational and communication skills,  were primary reasons for our decision.

“He is energetic, creative and has a tremendous passion for the game.  We look forward to him joining the organization and making his impact felt in short order.”

Eppler is stoked to get this opportunity.

“I cannot adequately express how excited I am for the opportunity Arte Moreno and the Angels have given me,” he said.  “The Angels are committed to championship standards. They are committed to being a perennial contender, and many of the pieces are already in place for that to occur.  I look forward to a collaborative effort as we look to enhance and advance every phase of the baseball operations department.

“This is an organization with a tremendous amount of talent on and off the field, and I am excited to begin the next chapter of Angels baseball.”

The Angels’ season ended Sunday with a 9-2 loss at Texas. The Angels needed to win that game to force a one-game playoff Monday at Houston that would have decided the second wild-card team in the American League.




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Mike Scioscia says he was comfortable dealing with now-former GM Jerry Dipoto

Jerry Dipoto has reportedly resigned after 3 1/2 years as the Angels general manager after allegedly butting heads with Angels...

Jerry Dipoto/Staff photo by Keith Birmingham


Angels manager Mike Scioscia was fielding questions during a post-game news conference following Wednesday’s 3-1 loss to the New York Yankees at Angel Stadium. It was the same day general manager Jerry Dipoto resigned amid what some perceived to be a power struggle with Scioscia, though Scioscia denied they were in one.

However, with former GM Bill Stoneman taking the job as interim GM, Scioscia was asked if he expects it will be easier to work with Stoneman than it was working with Dipoto, with whom Scioscia had issues that dated to 2012 when Dipoto fired hitting instructor Mickey Hatcher.

Scioscia, who in 2000 was hired by Stoneman, shot down the notion that he was uncomfortable working with Dipoto.

“First of all, I felt very comfortable dealing with Jerry,” Scioscia said. “Like I’ve said, we had a very honest and frank relationship as far as how we felt. Didn’t always agree, so I don’t think this was – I can only speak from my end of it – it wasn’t a comfort-level problem at all.

“I think the fact that Bill’s coming back is, you know, we’re all familiar with the way he goes about preparing every day, we’re very familiar with what his expectations are for us on a daily basis and we’re very confident in the fact that he’s going to continue do things that are going to help us improve this year and, hopefully, make a run we feel is going to eventually evolve into a championship-caliber club.”

The Angels (41-38) on Friday begin a three-game series at Texas. They will then go to Colorado for two interleague games and then to Seattle for four games leading into the All-Star break.

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It’s official: Jerry Dipoto out as GM, Bill Stoneman is interim GM

The Los Angeles Angels on Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. made it official – Jerry Dipoto is out as the team’s general manager. The team has named former general manager and current team senior adviser Bill Stoneman as interim GM.

Stoneman served in the office from November 1999 to October 2007, during which time the Angels won three division titles and a league championship and World
Series title in 2002 while compiling a record of 703-593 (.542).

Stoneman, a former major-league pitcher who tossed two no-hitters for the Montreal Expos, is a 1962 graduate of West Covina High School. He also attended Mt.
San Antonio College.

Dipoto took over as GM in October 2011. In his 3 1/2 years at the helm, the Angels went 306-258 with one playoff appearance. That was in 2014, when the Angels compiled a major-league best record of 98-64, winning the AL West before being swept by the Kansas City Royals in the first round.

The Angels had recently extended Dipoto’s contract through the 2016 season.

Stoneman hired Mike Scioscia to manage the Angels in 2000.

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Daily Distractions: Mike Trout’s celebrity grows, Vladimir Guerrero’s quest continues.

Not long ago, fans voted online to determine who is “The Face of Major League Baseball.” The winner, of course, was Ezequiel Astacio Joey Votto.

Wait, you didn’t remember who won the most important bracket of March?

Votto’s victory vindicated his small-market heroics but it couldn’t land him in a national television advertising campaign called “I Play.” The five faces MLB chose for the campaign: David Price, Andrew McCutchen, Robinson Cano, Bryce Harper and Angels outfielder Mike Trout, whose video spot is linked above. (Apologies to the entire Midwest are in order.)

It’s another drop in the growing tide of Trout’s national celebrity. This off-season, he was featured on the cover of ESPN The Magazine, GQ and Men’s Health. You have to figure that he’ll get more exposure before he gets less. Ryan Seacrest seems to agree.

It’s also a refreshing affirmation that it’s possible to be a star simply by being really good at what you do. Trout isn’t as flashy as Harper, doesn’t play in as large a market as Cano, and hasn’t had as much time to establish himself as Price or McCutchen. He’s just a really good baseball player — maybe the best in the game — albeit one with a .313 on-base percentage (if you want to hold up his three-game sample size from 2013).

Playing in Los Angeles of Anaheim helps, too.

The Angels are playing the Texas Rangers in Arlington in about 10 minutes. Onto the bullet points:

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