Yankees exec among 8 potential candidates who could replace Alderson

With Sandy Alderson strongly hinting Tuesday that he won’t return from his leave of absence as general manager, the Mets will likely be searching for a new head of their baseball operations for the 2019 season. Here are eight logical candidates for the opening, from internal to external:

1. John Ricco, Mets senior vice president and assistant GM

Part of the three-headed interim GM setup with the two subsequent names here, Ricco has been a crucial piece of the Mets’ front office since 2004.

2. J.P. Ricciardi, Mets special assistant to the GM

He served as the Blue Jays’ general manager from 2001-09 and has been a Mets consigliere since the 2010-11 offseason.

3. Omar Minaya, Mets special assistant to the GM

He ran the Mets for six years, from 2004-10, and appears content to serve as the background talent-evaluation guru.

4. Josh Byrnes, Dodgers senior VP of baseball operations

He and Alderson were the finalists for the Mets’ last GM search, nearly eight years ago.

5. Jason McLeod, Cubs senior VP of scouting and player development

A longtime deputy of Theo Epstein with both the Red Sox and the Cubs, McLeod is one of the hottest names in the future-GM circuit.

6. Tim Naehring, Yankees VP of baseball operations

His boss Brian Cashman has credited him for many of the moves that turned the Yankees back into a monster.

7. Kevin Goldstein, Astros special assistant to the GM, player personnel

A former writer for Baseball Prospectus, Goldstein’s knack for finding talent helped make the Astros 2017 champions.

8. Peter Woodfork, Major League Baseball senior VP of baseball operations

The Mets hired Alderson and Ricco away from MLB’s central office, and Woodfork worked previously for the Red Sox and Diamondbacks.

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