Hiring Kevin Towers as GM a great move by Diamondbacks

The Arizona Diamondbacks practice at Chase Field in Phoenix, Arizona, in this October 2, 2007 file photo. Major League Baseball commissioner Bud Selig has to deal with a small but growing movement that wants to either boycott or move next year's All-Star game, in Phoenix. At issue is Arizona's pending immigration law, allowing police to check the immigration status of people they stop for other reasons, if they are reasonably suspected of being in the country illegally.  REUTERS/Jeff Topping/Files  (UNITED STATES - Tags: SOCIETY LAW SPORT BASEBALL)

The deal isn’t completed yet, but once it is the Diamondbacks should reap the rewards of hiring a man that should still be employed by the Padres.

Kevin Towers led the Padres to four division championships and an appearance in the 1998 World Series when he was their general manager from 1995 until he was fired in October of last year. He was let go after two losing seasons in 2008 and 2009, yet before he was canned he built the team that has shocked everyone in 2010. (As of this writing, the Padres are clinging to a one-game lead in the NL West.)

Towers was the person that traded for Adrian Gonzalez following the 2004 season – the same deal that also brought starter Chris Young to San Diego. He also drafted Jake Peavy in the 15th round (472nd overall) of the 1999 MLB Draft and then traded him to the White Sox for, among others, starter Clayton Richard, who is now a valuable piece of the Padres’ future.

San Diego is in first place right now largely because of the success of Richard and Mat Latos (another one of Towers’ draft picks), an outstanding bullpen, Gonzalez and Jon Garland.

Outside of Garland, Towers had a hand in all of the above factors that have attributed to the Padres’ success in 2010. When he left, the San Diego front office did next to nothing to improve the team in the offseason and even thought about trading Gonzalez on several occasions last winter.

Granted, Towers is just one man and it takes a team of scouts and personnel directors to run a baseball team. But given his track record, two losing seasons shouldn’t have cost him his job in San Diego.

No matter – he’s going to be Arizona’s GM soon enough and considering the Diamondbacks are a team that has underachieved over the last couple of seasons, he’s the right man for the job. The club needs an experienced leader – someone that know how to build through the draft and with youth – and that’s what they’ll get out of Towers.

It might take a year or two, but Arizona should be competing again soon.

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