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How many managers' heads are going to roll?

May 18, 2010, 5:12 PM EDT

Donald Trump.jpgFormer Mets GM and current Sirius/XM radio host Jim Duquette tweeted something that caught my eye a few minutes ago:

Major League Scout – “Hearing more managerial
changes by the end of the month. Could be up to 10 changes by the end of
the season.”

Ten?  Really?  My reaction was the same as Duquette’s: Wow.  Duquette thinks that 3-5 firings by the end of the season is more reasonable. I think he’s right.

But just for fun, here’s my list of guys who, based on my gut, a hunch and some moderately informed approximatin’ have a decent-to-certain chance to find themselves out of a job come this fall, for whatever reason. Note: I’m being intentionally bearish on many of these guys just to see if I can get to ten:

  • Cito Gaston of the Blue Jays: Maybe he won’t be fired given how good the team is going, but there have been multiple indications that he’s going to retire after this season and that the team is just fine with that. Maybe everyone changes their mind about it if things continue to go well, though;

  • Dave Trembley of the Orioles: I was actually surprised he outlasted Trey Hillman;

  • Bob Geren of the Athletics: This is probably a longshot, but there was talk about it last year and things aren’t substantially better this year. The A’s tend not to make moves just to make moves;

  • Fredi Gonzalez of the Marlins: Matthew is going to have more on him at around 6PM Eastern, but for now it’s worth noting that he was on thin ice last winter. Can the Hanley Ramirez Hullabaloo work to his political advantage?

  • Jerry Manuel of the Mets: The Mets are obviously in dire shape. I mean really, they have the same record as the Red Sox for crying out loud!

  • Bobby Cox of the Braves: This is a retirement, not a firing obviously. Although if Nate McClouth and Melky Cabrera don’t start hitting Cox may end the season in handcuffs after he murders them both;

  • Lou Piniella of the Cubs: I think Sweet Lou will be allowed to see the season through and then retire.

  • John Russell of the Pirates: He hasn’t done anything offensive to baseball and nature or anything, but the Pirates may be operating their franchise under numerology principles. Since Jim Leyland left, they’ve had managers serve for two, four, and five years each. If they fire Russell, they’ll have a three to complete the set.

  • Ken Macha of the Brewers: It’s getting ugly in Milwaukee. And, as I mentioned yesterday, this is a team that fired their manager just before the playoffs.

  • Joe Torre of the Dodgers: This is all a function of how much of a headache he really gets on the behind the scenes stuff.  For all that gets written about it, I don’t think anyone besides Torre knows if he’ll come back for more. And even he may not know yet.

  • A.J. Hinch of the Diamondbacks: The bullpen is bad and you can only fire so many players. In a lot of ways Hinch’s hiring was a grand experiment. That experiment appears to be failing.

That makes 11, although (a) some of those are long shots; and (b) Gaston, Cox, Torre, Piniella and Torre wouldn’t be firings, technically speaking.

So, six firings. Seem reasonable to you?

  1. Michael Strope - May 18, 2010 at 5:30 PM

    I’m not saying you’re wrong about it, but I don’t understand why the Jays would fire Cito. To do what he’s done and doing in that division with that team, and this year without Halladay, is nearly miraculous. Seriously, just how many games has he lost in that division that the Jays brass think he blew? Give Girardi that roster and see how he does!! And I’m a Yankees fan!

  2. brendan - May 18, 2010 at 5:31 PM

    Mr. Calcaterra, good article. I hate to play policeman here, but it is Dave Trembley not Mike Trembley that will soon be fired by the Baltimore Orioles.

  3. Old Gator - May 18, 2010 at 5:32 PM

    “Fredi Gonzalez of the Marlins…it’s worth noting that he was on thin ice last winter. Can the Hanley Ramirez Hullabaloo work to his political advantage?”
    .
    No.
    .
    Fredi has been operating under three handicaps all along, but now four: the deeply flawed budget basement team he was handed by Scrooge McLoria and his Chihuahua, the delusional expectations McLoria really does seem to harbor for this erratic, ham-handed bunch, and his own substantial shortcomings as a field tactician, and recently, the hard truth that the team needs Hanley a lot more than it needs him. In the final analysis Scrooge, already unhappy with Fat Fredi’s inability to bend reality to his owner’s fantasies, will side with The Franchise. and go find himself another manager who can actually get some serious mileage out of this team.
    .
    How about Joe Girardi? At 2.5 games behind the Rays, the Feesh might be able to make a deal with the Borg wherein they pick up about 90% of his salary. True, he thinks McLoria is a nitwit and will show it every chance he gets, but at least he’ll keep the team in some semblance of contention until they sputter out in early September.

  4. Paul Martin - May 18, 2010 at 5:35 PM

    Cito Gaston? Duh!!! It is on the public record that he will retire at the end of the season and will be retained as a consultant. He will not be fired. Given the performance of the team this year, there will be pressure on the Jays to keep him on as manager.

  5. YankeesfanLen - May 18, 2010 at 5:43 PM

    It is strange and wonderful to see the Blue Jays do so well, however look at last year then fast-forward to the All Star Break, they’re kind of like the O’s of a few years ago. And Girardi wouldn’t have gotten that far.
    I’m surprised Torre’s tolerance for abuse has lasted this long, I think this year is it. For that matter, never un derstood why he went in the first place.
    Has it been that long since Leyland ran the Pirates? He may retire after this year cause of the smoking policy alone.
    And good ol’ Jerry, at least he’ll be home on Sunday night after the Universe sweeps ‘em. And beans Frenchie, just for fun.
    Captcha: exempt pests- guess that’s what owners and GMs are doing. BTW, Bobby Valentine was on 1050ESPN yesterday with “comments”

  6. YankeesfanLen - May 18, 2010 at 5:50 PM

    Gator, good point sending Girardi back to the Feesh. Then the Metropolitans can keep ol’Jerry and we’ll get Valentine. Yankee Stadium will be a bowling alley in the morning.

  7. YANKEES1996 - May 18, 2010 at 5:51 PM

    If the Mets fire Jerry Manuel and don’t get rid of Omar they will continue to fail.

  8. monkeyball - May 18, 2010 at 6:12 PM

    Uh, Craig? Bob Geren was (in)famously the best man at A’s GM/co-owner Billy Beane’s (second) wedding. He’s also been handed a shit-sandwich roster filled with the infirm and the incompetent. If Beane can’t bring himself to DFA his other personal favorite, Eric Chavez (who is clearly stick-a-fork-in-him done), then why on earth would he fire Geren?

  9. Son of Shane Mack - May 18, 2010 at 6:22 PM

    Fine article (with the corrections mentioned above) – but why subject us to a picture of the multi-millionaire moron? I mean I get the tag-line reference (“You’re fired!) – but I just hate that guy. I had to use a browser feature to remove that picture just to read the your post.

  10. APBA Guy - May 18, 2010 at 6:26 PM

    Monkeyball is right, and since you, Mr. Craig, were out here in Napa last year I’m shocked, shocked that you aren’t more aware that Geren is the manager that Billy has been searching for all these year: company guy, doesn’t make waves, minimal “creativity”, etc.. He’s not going anywhere until he’s had enough.

  11. Mack - May 18, 2010 at 6:31 PM

    As a Brewers fan, I hope Macha gets the axe. While they’re at it, they should fire Doug Melvin, (GM), too.

  12. Craig Calcaterra - May 18, 2010 at 7:09 PM

    Right, but Geren doesn’t get a job for life, right? There has to be some practical limit on his tenure. I may be wrong that it’s this year, but what would it take? Is he safe until he looses 100 games in a year?
    (note: this is not rhetorical; I really don’t know the parameters with him).

  13. RichardInDallas - May 18, 2010 at 7:17 PM

    Geren won’t be fired until he tests positive for cocaine. Oh, wait. Managers don’t get fired for THAT!!!

  14. Joe - May 18, 2010 at 7:28 PM

    Let’s get rid of Ozzie Guillen while we’re at it and make it an even dozen. I think Kenny Williams has had enough. Time for Ozzie to go….

  15. Professor Longnose - May 18, 2010 at 7:33 PM

    But how many of those fired will then be hired by another of the teams that just fired one of them?

  16. Gardy - May 19, 2010 at 12:05 AM

    Add Gardy to the list if he lets Guerrier pitch to A-Rod agian

  17. Rays fan - May 19, 2010 at 12:06 AM

    “That makes 11, although (a) some of those are long shots; and (b) Gaston, Cox, Torre, Piniella and Torre wouldn’t be firings, technically speaking.”
    Joe Torre probably feels like he’s tolerating twice as much crap as every other manager due to the LA Dodgers ownership/divorce soap opera, but I don’t think he can retire twice so why name him twice? :)

  18. Old Gator - May 19, 2010 at 9:04 AM

    Last night’s primaries were hard on incumbents. I guess those old managers ought to be pooping their pantsies as well. You know how it is when an idea takes hold and sweeps the cultural landscape like revolutionary fever. Off with their heads!

  19. Stephen Chiu - May 19, 2010 at 11:23 AM

    Lou might join Cox in handcuffs if Lee and Ramirez don’t start hitting.

  20. K - May 19, 2010 at 12:11 PM

    Joe, if Ozzie has to go then so does Kenny. They are both responsible for the players on the field, Kenny moreso. He let Ozzie pass on Thome which is 1) a weak move by a GM to let the manager make your decisions and 2) an example of how Ozzie’s DH by committee is a complete failure.

  21. hardjuge - May 19, 2010 at 12:31 PM

    shame too, since the one violator can’t manage a pitching staff.

  22. B-Ry - May 19, 2010 at 1:46 PM

    Couldn’t agree with you more! Macha, Melvin, Suppan, and Hoffman all need to be shown the exit. And let me just add this; Willie Randolph is not the answer! Why does Melvin insist on hiring managers who are proven failures? Macha destroyed Oakland and Randolph destroyed the Mets. Give Sveum a shot and see what he can do for the remainder of the season. It couldn’t possibly get any worse!

  23. sterlingandkay - May 19, 2010 at 7:06 PM

    Interesting posts. Cox, Gaston, Piniella, and Torre need to be removed from the list as they are clearly not going to be in season firings (as noted by others–several of them have already announced their retirement at season’s end). I think five more managers will be fired in season, but here is my list of ten managers who could be fired- listed from most likely to least likely: 1. Jerry Manuel, 2. Ken Macha, 3. Dave Trembley, 4. Fredi Gonzalez, 5. Don Wakamatsu, 6. A.J. Hinch, 7. John Russell, 8. Ron Washington, 9. Bob Geren, 10. Ozzie Guillen

  24. KBR - May 19, 2010 at 10:22 PM

    For the Pirates to fire John Russell, there would have to be someone else willing to take the job. All of a sudden, managing in Grand Rapids doesn’t seem so bad, does it?

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