Originally Posted by rdiersin
No offense, but I guess I just don't buy that. Yes, it would take a long time to become an expert in player development and scouting, I agree with that. But, it also takes quite a bit of time to become an expert in statistical and probabilistic methods as well. But I guess my point is, that a GM doesn't have to be an expert. A GM has to know what he needs to know of these areas and hire good experts to help develop and implement his philosophies. Just MO.
I think it goes beyond that. A GM has to be well-versed in a number of areas in order to hire good people. It's easy to get BSed when you don't know any better.
A GM also needs to do more than solicit opinions. First off, the answers you get will depend in no small part on the quality of the questions you ask. So a GM needs to ask good questions. The GM also needs to bring some acumen into the decision-making process. I remember when JimBo sometimes held votes on potential moves and tended to go with the majority decision. That's sweet, but say your advisors are 7-2 in favor if doing the wrong thing? The GM should be someone capable of forming an independent opinion.
Also, a GM needs to lead. Truly great out-of-the-box ideas aren't going to strike someone for whom the box is a cavernous mystery. Initiative is a product of knowledge, or at least the quest for it. Expertise is a tricky commodity in baseball. Not a lot of people can claim it for a lifetime That said, a GM should have definitive strengths in stats-based and eyeball scouting. Without that communication and leadership will prove difficult tasks.