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Who should be the next Orioles' manager?

Jun 4, 2010, 12:15 PM EDT

Juan Samuel has the job now, but you have to assume that he’s truly just the interim guy.  Based on my perusal of Orioles’ blogs and stuff, O’s fans seem to be begging for an experienced major league manager, and one would think that Andy MacPhail is thinking the same thing.

But who?  The name I’ve heard the most from Orioles fans is Buck Showalter.  I can see the appeal: he’s smart, he’s experienced and he has a track record for turning teams around (see, Yankees, Diamondbacks).

I think people read too much into that, though. Sure, Showalter was around for the rebirth of the Yankees’ dynasty, but that’s more a story of a savvy front office than a managerial genius, ain’t it? Showalter’s success with the Diamondbacks is much the same story. Tell me: was the Dbacks’ 100-win season in their second year of existence a function of Showalter’s multi-year plan to launch that franchise coming to fruition or a function of the front office going out and getting Randy Johnson and squeezing good years out of some aging veterans?  Good job by Buck, sure, but it’s not a model that the Orioles are following.

Other candidates that get talked up by O’s fans are Tom Kelly and Davey Johnson.  Not to put too fine a point on it, but those guys are a bit long in the tooth to bring a young team up from nothing anymore, no? And that’s even if you assume that either of them want to manage the O’s. Davey has a bad history with Peter Angelos and Kelly seems pretty darn comfortable being Twins manager emeritus these days to want to try and figure out what makes Adam Jones tick.  If I had a veteran team I wanted to push over the top, sure, I’d consider both of them, but they just aren’t the right fit for Baltimore.

Who else? The Baltimore Sun’s Dan Connolly has a slide show of twelve potential managers, including Showalter, Johnson and interim guy Samuel.  Others on Connolly’s list are Phil Garner, Ryne Sandberg, Eric Wedge, Larry Bowa, Bobby Valentine, Bob Melvin, Rick Dempsey and a couple of minor league guys.

Bowa would certainly light a fire for a while, but that’s all he’s shown he can do as a manager and his act gets old pretty quick. Melvin might be a good choice — experienced but not too experienced — but he seems to be the Mets’ skipper-in-waiting and would probably decline. Same with Sandberg and the Cubs.

Valentine seems more like Johnson and Kelly to me inasmuch as I’d rather see him with a veteran team, not kids. Dempsey is a broadcaster and that’s a lot more comfortable a life than that of a manager, so he may have no interest.  The minor league guys would be viewed as Dave Trembley redux (i.e. no major league experience) so I can’t see the team going there.

Of course there’s very rarely a perfect choice when it comes to these things, and often the best man for the job isn’t among the initial group of usual suspects.  If I’m running the Orioles I let Samuel play out the year, wait and see who becomes available, and be confident that my considerable amount of young talent will be a drawing card for a lot of potential candidates.

In other words: wait until this winter, Andy.  You’ll do much better then.

  1. john pileggi - Jun 4, 2010 at 12:28 PM

    Earl Weaver is not doing much these days. Other than Dave Johnson, he was the last decent manager this team has hired.

  2. Toni Toney Tony Torasco - Jun 4, 2010 at 12:30 PM

    I nominate myself

  3. ravensos - Jun 4, 2010 at 12:31 PM

    i say we really shake things up and hire brian billick.. who cares any more

  4. ravensos - Jun 4, 2010 at 12:32 PM

    i say we really shake things up and hire brian billick.. who cares any more

  5. Chris Fiorentino - Jun 4, 2010 at 12:39 PM

    The fact of the matter is that it really doesn’t matter WHO the Orioles hire. They are not going to make the playoffs in the next 8 years at the absolute MINIMUM. You can carve that in stone.
    Toronto is TWICE as good as them, and they will probably finish 30 games ahead of the Orioles this year. Boston, the Yankees and the Rays will all finish between 35 and 40 games ahead of the Orioles this year. Sure, a team like the Rays may falter in a year or two. Shoot, even Boston could falter. But the odds of the RED SOX, the RAYS AND THE YANKEES faltering in the same season is about .000000001%. Meaning, the Orioles are in trouble for a long, long time in today’s baseball.

  6. Tiger Woods - Jun 4, 2010 at 12:50 PM

    I’ve had about enough of this golfing stuff. I’ll do it.
    I hear Baltimore babes are pretty hot…

  7. Jose Canseco - Jun 4, 2010 at 12:51 PM

    Um… guys…. I’m here. I’m available.

  8. BC - Jun 4, 2010 at 12:53 PM

    How about Lee Elia? We could use some good sounds bytes.

  9. Grant - Jun 4, 2010 at 12:55 PM

    Rick Dempsey is such a bad broadcaster, and comes across as so dumb, that I would have no faith in him as a manager.

  10. Al Gore - Jun 4, 2010 at 1:04 PM

    I’ll do it. Let’s face it, I need the money now, and I have a LOT more time on my hands.

  11. YankeesfanLen - Jun 4, 2010 at 1:10 PM

    Andy should and will wait for winter, but as has been the case for the O’s, he’ll pull a Minaya and won’t do anything then either.
    For years I would drive down south and perchance catch a game going through Baltimore when they were in contention in late spring. By the time I came back a couple of weeks later, they had dissolved in a 10 game losing streak where they would stay. This was in the mid 00′s and while they weren’t always (except maybe ’05) in first place, at least they were in shouting distance of ’500
    Yankee Stadium South is a great place to take in a ballgame- I love 100% humidity but that’s because I’m all wet.

  12. APBA Guy - Jun 4, 2010 at 1:15 PM

    Andy will do what Angelos tells him to do. And if Angelos tells him nothing, Andy should get his resume together.

  13. YankeesfanLen - Jun 4, 2010 at 1:17 PM

    Hey Al- you should go to Match.com or EHarmony and use that line about inventing the internet. Er….call Bill and ask him what to do.

  14. Al Gore - Jun 4, 2010 at 1:24 PM

    Actually, I’m on my way to Ohio. Tiger and I are going to troll for babes after his round is done.

  15. YANKEES1996 - Jun 4, 2010 at 1:57 PM

    If Peter Angelos and Andy Mcphail have any sense at all they should try to lure Cal Ripken Jr into the managers spot, he would at least bring fans back to the ballpark. It really does not matter who the manager is though the team is just not very good right now, they need some veteran ballplayers to help out the younger guys and no, I don’t mean Miguel Tejada.

  16. Miley Cyrus - Jun 4, 2010 at 2:16 PM

    I can like TOTALLY do this job! Hire me! :-) I can even sing the national anthem! It would be so fun, I would invite all my friends to the games! xxxooo Miley :-)

  17. Jeff V. - Jun 4, 2010 at 4:08 PM

    Dempsey is known for 3 things:
    Catching in four different decades
    1983 WS MVP
    Sliding around the bases during rain delays
    No way should he be the manager.
    I would love Ryne Sandberg, I could live with Melvin or Wedge.

  18. Z - Jun 4, 2010 at 4:16 PM

    O’s need to go young with this hire.

  19. Ron - Jun 4, 2010 at 5:24 PM

    Wait a few months and hire Lou Piniella.

  20. Osmodious - Jun 4, 2010 at 5:52 PM

    Tom Kelly isn’t going to do it…he has made it pretty clear that he doesn’t want to be an everyday manager any longer. Besides, if he really wanted to, he’d be managing the Twins.
    Showalter would be a good choice because he is a micro-manager, a developing manager…he’s good with ‘young’ teams, or at least it appears that way (it’s been spoken of by many in the industry, too, so I can’t really speak against it).
    Bobby V. is an interesting choice, but I’m not sure he would take the chance…he might be waiting for what he perceives to be a better opportunity (aka: one where he might contend).
    One name that hasn’t come up is Willie Randolph, though he might see it as too much of a ‘prove yourself’ job and he might feels he’s been there and done that.
    Personally, I’d like to see Jerry Manuel get fired from the Mets and offered the job in Baltimore…it would essentially guarantee a few more years of Orioles losing, and make them even more of a pushover for my Yankees!

  21. Charlie L - Jun 5, 2010 at 5:02 AM

    I saw my first Oriole game in 1958. I have seen so many
    great Oriole teams. I was there at Ripken’s 2130 game, Frank Robinson’s 500th homer, many world series games, and the last game played at memorial Stadium. I was there for the plan crash and the escalator accident. I was at Camden Yards for the first game and had a season plan. I had just stepped off the escalator when it collapsed and several people were hurt. I have seen the good and the bad with both the Orioles and the old Colts.
    The Orioles will never win again under Peter Angelos. He is only interested in money, not a successful baseball team. He won’t spend the money to get the great players and because of this long standing “frugality” no one wants to come to this franchise any more. The O’s are pathetic. They might not even win in the minor leagues. Sad. Sad. Sad.

  22. Charlie L - Jun 5, 2010 at 5:06 AM

    No offense Myley, but our Sophomore High School student who sings
    the Anthem at our High School games in York PA has 10 times the voice you have. Please tell your friends to stay home. The Orioles do not need another loser at their games. Oh yea, and she does not need 20 backups and dancers surrounding her to sound good.

  23. Rob - Jun 5, 2010 at 9:12 AM

    Trey Hillman meets the requirement of a former manager with experience and he is available!!!!!!!!!

  24. Spice - Jun 5, 2010 at 1:12 PM

    The O’s didn’t need a new manager, they need new ownership. Until then, no one will be successful.

  25. Inspector - Jun 13, 2010 at 8:38 PM

    People used to wonder how many 20 game winners the Orioles would have by the end of the season. Today, people wonder if the Orioles will win 20 games in the season!

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