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With Diamondbacks’ hiring of GM Mike Hazen, Red Sox now left searching

Boston Red Sox general manager Mike Hazen, left, stands alongside manager John Farrell at a spring training baseball practice in Fort Myers, Fla., Thursday, Feb. 18, 2016. Red Sox pitchers and catchers hold their first official workout on Friday. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)
LISTEN: Mike Hazen, new D-backs GM

The Arizona Diamondbacks’ search for a new general manager ended on Sunday, as they hired former Boston Red Sox general manager Mike Hazen.

Hazen was in the Red Sox organization for 11 years, holding nearly every front office position along the way. After former Red Sox general manager Ben Cherington was let go in Sept. of 2015, Hazen was promoted to become the 15th GM in Red Sox history.

With the departure of Hazen, that leaves a void that needs to be filled for the Red Sox. Even for a 93-win team, being without a general manager isn’t good, as the Boston Globe‘s Alex Speier wrote.

For now, it remains to be seen what dominos fall in light of Hazen’s departure. The lone initial conclusion reached by the organization is a sense that the team is losing an executive whose ability to blend the realms of scouting, player development, and analytics made him an enormous asset over the last 11 seasons.

While serving as GM in Boston, he had to get the OK for every move from president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski. Despite the limitations, Hazen was viewed as valuable component for the Red Sox’s success, and ESPN‘s Scott Lauber wrote he wasn’t just along for the ride.

Hazen was the point man on the July trade for veteran infielder Aaron Hill, a deal which wound up paying few dividends but also came at minimal cost. His expertise in multiple areas allowed him to bridge the scouting and analytics branches of the organization. As general manager for the past 13 months, he had a prominent, often loud voice in all personnel moves, large and small, even though Dombrowski had the final say.

Now the search for a new GM is on for the Red Sox. Dombrowski isn’t scrambling, but there is some stress on their staff now, as they not only need to find a new GM, but they may have to find a new bench coach, as rumors are swirling that Hazen is going to take Torey Lovullo with him as his manager. The Red Sox are focusing their attention on getting their new GM, and they are considering all avenues, wrote NESN‘s Darren Hartwell.

Yet the Red Sox’s immediate focus still is in replacing Hazen’s assistant GM post. Dombrowski said Monday he’ll consider internal candidates for the position first and plans on conducting those interviews this week. He also didn’t rule out hiring someone from outside the organization.

Hazen is the analytical-type that the D-backs were looking for, and they hope to have their long-term answer at that position. With the hire though, it leaves the Red Sox on the lookout for a new GM to serve under Dombrowski.

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