Kim Ng, Dodgers' vice president and assistant general manager, said her decision to leave the club and join the Major League Baseball commissioner's office in no way indicates she has lost her desire to become a team's general manager.
"In terms of my long-term aspirations, they're still there," Ng said Tuesday. "If anything, this makes me a more well-rounded candidate."
Ng, who could become the first female general manager in the major leagues, has served as an assistant general manager for 13 years. She has had three interviews for GM positions but no jobs, and on Tuesday she was announced as a new MLB senior vice president of baseball operations. She said she would specialize in international operations and report to former Dodgers manager Joe Torre, who was hired last month as executive vice president of on-field operations.
Ng noted that general managers and other club officials have been hired out of the commissioner's office -- most recently Sandy Alderson, the new general manager of the New York Mets. She said the opportunity "came together quickly" and intrigued her.
"It was something of interest to me," she said. "I finally came to the conclusion it was just a fantastic opportunity I couldn't let pass by."
She denied that the Dodgers' current ownership turmoil -- and the possibility that the divorce of Frank and Jamie McCourt ultimately could result in new ownership -- played a role in her decision to leave the club.
"I have a chance to help Joe and help the commissioner change policy and impact the game in a meaningful way," Ng said. "That really wasn't part of this. Frank has been very good to me. Ned (Colletti, the Dodgers' general manager) has been very good to me.
"This was an extremely difficult decision for me. I've been with this organization for almost half my career. That was a big factor. I just walked in the door with Sandy Koufax. That is one of the things I will miss."
Ng interviewed for the Dodgers' GM job in 2005, but Frank McCourt went outside the organization to hire Colletti, then the assistant general manager for the San Francisco Giants. Ng also interviewed for GM jobs with the Seattle Mariners in 2008 and San Diego Padres in 2009.
Ng previously worked in baseball's New York headquarters in 1997, as director of waivers and records for the American League. She served as an assistant general manager for the New York Yankees from 1998 through 2001, then joined the Dodgers in the same capacity in 2002. She stayed in that role under three general managers: Dan Evans, Paul DePodesta and Colletti.
"It's a truly great opportunity for Kim and one that will undoubtedly broaden her experience," Colletti said. "She has played a huge part in the successes we've had over the last several years, and her departure will certainly be a loss. I am extremely grateful for all that she's done for me and for the department."
Ng said she would remain with the Dodgers through opening day before moving to New York for her new job.
-- Bill Shaikin in Glendale, Ariz.
Photo: Kim Ng. Credit: Kirby Lee / US Presswire