Saturday afternoon at Comerica Park, Detroit Tigers general manager Al Avila met with manager Ron Gardenhire in their usual pre-game meeting. It was then Gardenhire told Avila he was retiring effective immediately. Tigers bench coach Lloyd McClendon will manage the team for the remainder of the season. That said with a much improved minor league prospect pool the Detroit Tigers should have little problems hiring a good manager.
First off one thing I will not do is drop names and speculate who could be in the running for the sudden managerial opening. What I will do is explain why the Detroit Tigers will be able to attract a good solid manager.
As mentioned earlier, the Tigers prospect pool is an attraction on it’s own. Casey Mize, Spencer Torkelson, Tarik Skubal to name a few have the Tigers rebuild now moving along at a faster rate.
The fact that Tigers owner Christopher Ilitch publicly said he would spend money on high priced free agents the closer the prospects got to the major leagues also helps making the Detroit managers job attractive.
Ron Gardenhire did his job. He lost (as expected) a lot of games in his three seasons in Detroit. That was not the point. He was brought on board to get prospects up to major league playing standards. He did his job.
In my opinion, the next Detroit Tigers manager needs to be a person who can get the team to take the next step. That is the key. Gardenhire coached prospects to things the right way, now come the need to get the entire team on the same page and begin to win.
The Detroit Tigers opening will have it’s fair share of coach’s who will throw their names into the mix, because the Tigers have a history of spending money something Ilitch said he would do.
The key is for the Tigers to nail the hire. No former fan favorite player, nor a coach with a big name. The hire needs to be able to balance a largely young roster with some veterans sprinkled in and begin to move up the win/loss column.
These are the final steps of the rebuild.