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ROCKIES GM REPLACED BY HIS PROTEGE

Times wires

DENVER - New Rockies general manager Jeff Bridich is a Harvard graduate who looks at baseball from more of an analytical angle.

He was promoted from within the organization after a fourth straight losing season and counts as his protege longtime GM Dan O'Dowd, who resigned Wednesday after a mostly unsuccessful tenure.

A fresh start or more of the same? That was the debate around the Mile High City soon after the Rockies announced their decision.

O'Dowd wasn't exactly a rousing success. His 15 years in charge included four winning seasons and two postseason appearances, including a four-game World Series loss to Boston in 2007.

Senior vice president Bill Geivett followed O'Dowd out the front office door.

Bridich understands the skepticism from fans, given his ties to O'Dowd. He insisted this won't be more of the same.

"Four straight years of losing baseball? If you ask anybody in this organization, it's unacceptable and it's tiring," said Bridich, 37, who was promoted from senior director of player development. "It's certainly not what people want and expect inside and outside the organization."

While introducing Bridich, owner Dick Monfort said he was "excited about a fresh start." Also at the gathering was manager Walt Weiss, who said a clean slate is "the way we have to look at it. ... It's time to turn this thing around and bring playoff baseball back here."

BECKETT RETIRES: Dodgers right-hander Josh Beckett, facing surgery for a torn labrum in his left hip that caused him to miss most of the last three months of the season, retired after a 14-year career that included two World Series championships. Beckett, 34, finished 138-106 with a 3.88 ERA.

DEMPSTER DONE: Right-hander Ryan Dempster officially announced his retirement after sitting out the 2014 season. Dempster, 37, went 132-133 with a 4.36 ERA and 87 saves in 16 seasons.

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