The Sporting News Executive of the Year award is usually reserved for the boss of an overachieving baseball club.

That's why Oakland A's general manager Billy Beane won the honor this year after the A's unexpectedly won the AL West. Beane earned 31 of the 57 votes from a panel of major league executives -- topping the Nationals' Mike Rizzo (13 votes), the Rangers' Jon Daniels (six), the Reds' Walt Jocketty (three), the Cardinals' John Mozeliak (two), the Giants' Brian Sabean (one) and the White Sox's Ken Williams (one).

But Baltimore Orioles executive vice president Dan Duquette didn't even manage to earn a vote after miraculously leading the Orioles to the postseason for the first time in 15 years.

Putting together a deep, young roster that should continue to be competitive -- and bringing in Joe Saunders in late August to help the rotation -- was worthy of some award consideration.

In his first year in Baltimore, Duquette turned a 93-loss team into a 93-win team. Certainly an honorable accomplishment -- just not according to his fellow executives.

- Jeffrey Tomik