Towers reportedly gets two-year extension with Padres

Updated: January 23, 2008, 1:19 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

SAN DIEGO -- Padres general manager Kevin Towers agreed to a two-year contract extension that runs through 2010, The Associated Press learned Tuesday night.

900 Club

Kevin Towers is just one of four current general managers whose clubs have won over 900 games during their tenures with their current team.

GM Wins Since
Brian Cashman, NYY 985 1998
Kevin Towers, SD 970 1996
Brian Sabean, SF 960 1997
Billy Beane, OAK 901 1998

The deal was confirmed by two people familiar with the negotiations who spoke on condition of anonymity because an announcement had not yet been made.

Towers' current deal was set to end after the 2008 season. His extension was to be announced at a news conference scheduled for Wednesday afternoon.

Towers has been San Diego's GM since 1996, making him the longest-tenured current GM with one club. Since then, the Padres have won four NL West titles and been to the World Series once, losing in four games to the New York Yankees in 1998.

The Padres won the division in 2005 and '06 before losing to the St. Louis Cardinals in the first round of the playoffs both years. They missed reaching the postseason for a franchise-record third straight season when they lost a wild-card tiebreaker at Colorado in 13 innings on Oct. 1.

Towers has kept the Padres competitive despite working with a limited payroll. He once joked that he's a "sludge merchant," able to move unproductive players with big contracts for more productive players.

Although the Padres have been criticized for their farm system's lack of productivity, homegrown right-hander Jake Peavy was the unanimous choice for the 2007 NL Cy Young Award. He was a 15th-round pick in the June 1999 draft. Peavy recently was awarded the biggest deal in club history, a $52 million, three-year extension that will be worth $70 million if the Padres pick up his option for 2013.

In one of his biggest trades, Towers acquired All-Star right-hander Chris Young and first baseman Adrian Gonzalez in a six-player deal with Texas in January 2006.

The Padres have won 970 games in Towers' tenure. Only the Yankees, under GM Brian Cashman, have won more games (985) under their current general manager.

However, the two teams are not playing with an even deck. The Padres average salary (according to USA Today) since Towers took over is $48.4 million per year. Compare that to Cashman who has spent an average of $141.2 million per year on the Yankees' salary.

To put that in perspective, it has cost the Padres about $600,000 per win under Towers. The Yankees on the other hand have spent more than double that (about $1.4 million) per win under Cashman.

In fact, Cashman has spent more in the last three years on the Yankees salary than Towers has spent on the Padres salary in his 12 years as GM.

Information from The Associated Press and ESPN Research was used in this report.