Houston Astros assistant general manager Mike Elias is poised to become the Orioles’ next head of baseball operations, according to several news outlets.
Elias was a key component in the successful rebuild of the 2017 World Series champion Astros as their scouting director and then-assistant general manager.
USA Today, MLB.com and the Houston Chronicle have reported his impending hire, based on unnamed sources. However, the Orioles have not confirmed his selection or commented on the reports, which first surfaced late Tuesday night.
Elias, who replaces former executive vice president Dan Duquette atop the Orioles’ baseball operations hierarchy, was part of an exhaustive six-week search by executive vice president John Angelos and ownership representative Louis Angelos.
Other candidates include former Red Sox general manager Ben Cherington, former Los Angeles Dodgers general manager Ned Colletti, MLB executives Peter Woodfork and Tyrone Brooks, and Philadelphia Phillies assistant general manager Ned Rice.
Elias, 35, was an early hire of Astros general manager Jeff Luhnow, who came over from a successful stint heading up the farm system and drafts of the St. Louis Cardinals to rebuild the Astros.
Elias has been in Houston since January 2012, a six-year stint in which the Astros secured the top pick in the draft by virtue of having the worst record in baseball three times. They took advantage of that position to help build the 2017 World Series champions and one of the best young rosters in baseball.
Here's some background on Elias.
Born: Dec. 28, 1982
Education: Elias was a four-year baseball player at Yale University, where he graduated in 2006 with a degree in Eastern languages and civilizations.
2007: Hired as an area scout by the St. Louis Cardinals in the Mid-Atlantic.
2010: Promoted to manager of amateur scouting, where he worked to create efficiency while doing some amateur and international scouting.
January 2012: Hired as a special assistant to Luhnow in Houston, where he helped scouting director Bobby Heck on the first draft of the Astros' rebuild. Top pick Carlos Correa was one of nine major leaguers from that 2012 draft class.
August 2012: Named Astros director of scouting.
August 2016: Promoted to Astros assistant general manager with oversight of player development and minor league operations.
Astros first-round picks by year
2012: Shortstop Carlos Correa, Puerto Rico Baseball Academy (1st overall)
2012: Right-hander Lance McCullers Jr. (41st overall)
2013: Right-hander Mark Appel, Stanford (1st overall)
2014: Left-hander Brady Aiken, Cathedral Catholic HS—Calif. (1st overall)*
2014: Outfielder Derek Fisher, Virginia (37th overall)
2015: Shortstop Alex Bregman, LSU (2nd overall)
2015: Outfielder Kyle Tucker, H.B. Plant HS — Fla. (5th overall)
2016: Right-hander Forrest Whitley, Alamo Heights HS — Texas (17th overall)
2017: Right-hander J.B. Bukauskas, North Carolina (15th overall)
2018: Outfielder Seth Beer, Clemson (28th overall)
* -- not signed
Highlight: Correa's selection over Mike Zunino and Byron Buxton was a surprise at the time, but proved prescient as the Astros took advantage of the first draft with bonus pool allotments to sign several players to above-slot bonuses.
Lowlight: Houston went through an ignominious summer in 2014 after selecting Aiken first overall and not signing him because of a reported elbow issue that arose in the medicals. Not signing Aiken led to two other players with above-slot bonuses not signing, either, leading to the Astros to come under intense scrutiny.