Posted 10 December 2013 - 04:44 PM
From the article; "...Smith was hired with the thinking that he could provide a seamless transition. Since Smith was seen as more of an administrator, the team also promoted then-scouting director Mike Radcliff to vice-president in charge of player personnel."
I infer the following from this statement: 1) When Ryan was GM he was the boss of the player personnel director (Radcliff); 2) the organization was changed to reflect that Smith was not "in charge" of player personnel, or Radcliff; 3) Radcliff's position (VP player personnel) was horizontal and slightly elevated to Smith's position (Radcliff was a VP, but Smith wasn't a VP, only the GM). Thus Smith, as GM, did not have the same power that Ryan held as GM. Smith would need to balance the interests of different mangers, some of whom were outside of his authority. Ergo, he must build consensus between people which may involve "horse-trading" of decisions and goals. It isn't realistic to conclude that Smith could act with the same latitude as Ryan--Smith didn't have Ryan's power. Smith wasn't "at the top" as his title suggests--player personnel was outside of his purview. Therefore, Radcliff (and his subordinates) who are making player evaluations (Gardenhire would evaluate the Active Roster also) is just as responsible as Smith for poor personnel decisions--because his (department's) provides the evaluations which would serve as the justification for taking an action (or non-action). In short, any blistering of Smith must include the very same for Radcliff and quite likely Gardenhire as well, their input served as the basis for the organization to take an action, Smith was simply (as he has stated) the last signature on the paper. Smith was "an organization guy", he wasn't the commanding general.