By Eduardo A. Encina
The Baltimore Sun
11:24 PM EST, November 7, 2012
Orioles executive vice president Dan Duquette, who engineered one of the best turnarounds in baseball this season by taking the long suffering Orioles to the postseason for the first time in 15 years, was surprisingly shut out in the voting for this season's Sporting News Executive of the Year award, which goes to the game’s top front office exec.
Athletics general manager Billy Beane, whose Oakland team dramatically won the AL West on the final day of the regular season, received the award Wednesday night at the annual GM meetings in Indian Wells, Calif. Beane received 31 votes from a panel of 57 major league baseball executives.
Duquette received zero.
Nationals GM Mike Rizzo was second with 13 votes and Rangers GM Jon Daniels was third with six votes. The Reds’ Walt Jocketty received three votes, the Cardinals’ John Mozeliak received two votes and the Giants’ Brian Sabean and White Sox’s Ken Williams received one vote apiece.
Voting was concluded before the start of the postseason, so it was before the Orioles beat the Rangers in the one-game wild-card playoff and ultimately fell one win short of beating the Yankees in the American League Division Series.
Beane's Oakland team won the AL West for the first time since 2006. He rose to national prominance as the subject of Michael Lewis' best-selling book "Moneyball," which told the story of Beane's methods of acquiring undervalued players in building a winning A's team in 2002.
Duquette won the award 20 years ago following his first full season as GM of the Montreal Expos. The Expos won 87 games that season (16 more than the previous season) and finished second in the NL East.
He worked similar magic during his first year in Baltimore, turning a 93-loss team into a 93-win squad that came one win away from playing in the American League Champion Series.
The Sporting News Executive of the Year award, which has been given out since 1936, has been won by Orioles general managers four times but not since Roland Hemond received the honor following the “Why Not?” season in 1989.
Harry Dalton, who gave Duquette his first baseball job in Milwaukee, won the Orioles’ first Executive of the Year Award following the team’s 1970 World Series championship. Hank Peters won in 1979 and 1983.