10 Baseball GMs Best at Producing Homegrown Talent

Robert KnapelCorrespondent IDecember 28, 2011

10 Baseball GMs Best at Producing Homegrown Talent

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    Teams often go after big name free agents to try to improve their teams. This costs teams a lot of money and may not be the best option for the franchise.

    General managers that can draft and develop homegrown talent are incredibly valuable. It lets teams have cost controlled players that have a big impact on the team's future.

    There have been general managers that have done a great job of developing these homegrown players and as a result, their teams have been very successful.

10. Neal Huntington

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    Neal Huntington is one of the general managers that has taken more of a sabermetrics approach to valuing players and it has paid off for the Pittsburgh Pirates. The team has improved since he has been at the helm.

    Huntington's first draft was in 2008 and his first-round pick from that draft has already reached the majors. Pedro Alvarez has the potential to be a good player for the Pirates. Chase D'Arnaud also appears to be a potential part of the Pirates' future.

    There have also been a number of recent draft picks made by Huntington that are working their way towards the majors.

9. Jon Daniels

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    The Texas Rangers have seen a big turnaround since Jon Daniels became the GM of the franchise in 2005. Daniels has had success in both the draft and with signing international talent.

    Players such as Julio Borbon, Mitch Moreland and Tommy Hunter were all drafted by Daniels and have been a part of the Rangers' recent success.

    The Rangers signed Leonys Martin and he has put himself in a position to win a starting job for the 2012 season.

    Daniels has also traded for a number of young prospects such as Neftali Feliz and Elvis Andrus that he has seen develop in the Rangers' system.

8. Ned Colletti

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    Since 2005, Ned Colletti has been the general manager of the Los Angeles Dodgers. He made his first draft pick in 2006 and it was a huge success.

    With his first pick, Colletti selected future NL Cy Young award winner Clayton Kershaw. He also choose Dee Gordon who could be a key piece of the Dodgers' future.

    Josh Lindblom was called up in 2011 and he become a key piece of the Dodgers' starting rotation. Jerry Sands is another player that has developed under Colletti.

    The Dodgers have a number of young, homegrown players in the minors that could soon make an impact in the major leagues.

7. Brian Cashman

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    Whenever people think of the New York Yankees and the way that they build their roster, many prescribe to the idea that they buy many players and that they trade for whomever they want.

    Yankees GM Brian Cashman has actually developed a lot of homegrown talent for the team.

    Phillip Hughes and Joba Chamberlain were two of Cashman's draft picks to reach the majors.

    Cashman has had a much bigger impact signing international free agents. Orlando Hernandez, Robinson Cano, Melky Cabrera and Jose Contreras were all amateur free-agent signings.

6. Dave Dombrowski

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    Dave Dombrowski has served as a general manager for the Montreal Expos, Florida Marlins and he is currently the GM of the Detroit Tigers. He has traded away a few young prospects such as Adrian Gonzalez and Cameron Maybin before they spent any significant time in the majors, but he developed a lot of other talent.

    Josh Beckett and Justin Verlander are two star pitchers that Dombrowski has seen rise through the team's minor league system and into the majors. Rick Porcello, Curtis Granderson and Randy Winn are other players that Dombrowski has developed through his team's minor league system.

5. Walt Jocketty

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    Before he became the general manager of the Cincinnati Reds, Walt Jocketty was the GM of the St. Louis Cardinals from 1995 until 2007.

    Jocketty was responsible for drafting and developing the best player in baseball, Albert Pujols, while he was the GM of the Cardinals. Matt Morris, J.D. Drew and Dan Haren are a few more homegrown players that helped out the Cardinals under Jocketty's reign.

    A few of the players that Jocketty has drafted with the Reds such as Mike Leake have reached the majors and others are getting close to reaching the majors.

4. Doug Melvin

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    Doug Melvin helped craft the Texas Rangers team that reached the playoffs for the first time in franchise history.

    With the Rangers, Melvin drafted many players, but most of them reached the majors with other teams. Mark Teixeira was one of the only big name players that reached the majors with the Rangers.

    Melvin has had much more success with the Milwaukee Brewers. Rickie Weeks, Yovani Gallardo and Ryan Braun were all drafted by Melvin and they have been a big part of the Milwaukee Brewers' recent success.

3. Brian Sabean

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    It is hard to argue against a general manager that has put together a World Series team that has featured a number of homegrown players. Brian Sabean has done just that during his time with the San Francisco Giants.

    Since 1996, Sabean has drafted and developed a number of important players for the Giants. Sabean did not do well in the draft early on, but he's had much more success in the 2000s.

    Matt Cain was selected by Sabean in the 2002 draft. Brain Wilson was drafted the following year. Then, Sabean selected Jonathan Sanchez. The best pick of Sabean's career came in 2006 when he selected two-time NL Cy Young Award winner Tim Lincecum.

2. Dayton Moore

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    The Kansas City Royals have one of the best farm systems in baseball and they have Dayton Moore to thank for that. A few of the players he has selected have reached the majors and many more are right on the cusp of the big leagues.

    Mike Moustakas is developing into one of the best young stars in the majors. Just two rounds after he selected Moustakas in the 2007 draft, Moore selected Danny Duffy.

    Two players selected in 2008, Eric Hosmer and Johnny Giovatella, have already reached the majors and another two, Mike Montgomery and John Lamb, could be there soon.

    The 2009 drafted yielded Aaron Crow and Wil Meyers as well as Chris Dwyer.

1. Andrew Friedman

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    Andrew Friedman is technically the Executive Vice President of Baseball Operations for the Tampa Bay Rays, but he acts as the team's general manager. Jonah Keri recently wrote a book, The Extra 2%, which details how the Rays have been able to become competitive in the AL East.

    One of the key components of that success is drafting and developing young stars.

    After taking over in 2005, Friedman has been able to build a largely successful team that is filled with homegrown talent.

    Evan Longoria, Alex Cobb, Desmond Jennings, David Price and Matt Moore were all homegrown players that were a part of the Rays roster in 2011.