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De Jon Watson to be released by the Arizona Diamondbacks

In what may well end up being the shape of things to come, the Diamondbacks announced they will not renew the contract of senior vice president of baseball operations De Jon Watson.

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Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

De Jon Watson came over from the Los Angeles Dodgers in September 2014, at the same point that Dave Stewart was hired by the Diamondbacks as their general manager. According to the team's site, "He oversees the franchise's professional, amateur and international scouting as well as all player development functions. Along with General Manager Dave Stewart, he advises Chief Baseball Officer Tony La Russa on all key decisions." It adds, "Since joining the D-backs, Watson has increased the franchise's focus in the international market, playing a key role in the team's signing of Cuban free agent Yasmany Tomás and Yoan López."

That last sentence may perhaps explain why the team has opted not to renew his contract, with Tomas playing at or below replacement level, despite being the team's most well-paid position player, and Lopez's entire future in baseball seeming rocky, with multiple absences from the minor-league system already on his record. Nick Piecoro was the first to report the news and says, "Watson wanted to be told one way or another on his status for next year." He adds, "According to sources, Watson did not have a good working relationship with farm director Mike Bell, who at one point in July told superiors he could no longer work with Watson.:"

May this be the first of many such announcements.