Ozzie Guillen Rumors

Quick Hits: Guillen, Diamondbacks, Nava

White Sox executive Kenny Williams says baseball needs personalities like that of former manager Ozzie Guillen, Doug Padilla of ESPN Chicago writes. “I think it misses personality and characters and a guy who has had as much success as he has and has much baseball knowledge as he has and has a desire to be in uniform and should be in uniform somewhere,” says Williams. “Hopefully he gets another chance to show it.” Williams and Guillen had their differences when Guillen was with the White Sox, of course. The White Sox allowed Guillen to depart for Miami, where his tenure as manager of the Marlins was brief and unfortunate. He hasn’t managed since, although he’s expressed interest in returning. He now is an analyst for ESPN and ESPN Deportes. Here are more quick notes from around the Majors.

  • Diamondbacks GM Dave Stewart sees pitching as the key to improving the franchise’s fortune, the New York Times writes. “Everything depends on pitching,” says Stewart. “So as quickly as our young pitchers can mature is going to determine whether we contend or don’t. I know we’re going to hit and catch the ball. Those things are givens.” The Diamondbacks’ emergence will thus depend on young pitchers like Jeremy Hellickson, Rubby De La Rosa, and Archie Bradley, who makes his big-league debut today.
  • The Red Sox received inquiries about outfielder Daniel Nava this spring, Alex Speier of the Boston Globe tweets. The team declined to trade Nava despite a surplus in their outfield, however, feeling that Nava was more valuable in a Red Sox uniform than on the trade market.

Marlins Fire Ozzie Guillen

Ozzie Guillen’s first season in Miami began with high-priced free agent additions, new uniforms, an eye-catching stadium and even a reality show. There was considerable optimism that this would be the Marlins' year. But after a 93-loss season that featured a controversy or two along the way, the outspoken manager has lost his job. The Marlins fired Guillen today, nearly three weeks after he managed his final regular season game with the team.

Guillen had three years and $7.5MM remaining on his contract with Miami. The Marlins, who acquired Guillen from the White Sox a year ago, finished the 2012 season 69-93, last in the NL East. They'll now seek a replacement for Guillen and complete the transition they've been mulling for weeksMike Lowell's name has come up in connection with the Marlins, but he won't be considered, the Miami Herald reported early in October.

Guillen made controversial comments about Fidel Castro early in April, as his team played to an 8-14 record. Later in the season Guillen and Heath Bell publicly debated the manager’s decision to remove Bell from the closer’s role. Bell has since been traded, but evidently the deal didn’t affect Guillen’s job security.

Guillen, a 16-year MLB veteran who made three All-Star teams as a player, managed the White Sox for eight seasons before joining the Marlins. He led the White Sox to a World Series title in 2005 and compiled a total record of 678-617 in Chicago.

Bench coach Joey Cora has also been dismissed, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports (on Twitter). 

Marlins Still Weighing Leadership Changes

Not only is Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria deciding whether to fire manager Ozzie Guillen, he is considering restructuring his team’s front office, MLB.com’s Joe Frisaro reports. Loria probably won’t make a decision until the Marlins’ organizational meetings take place later in October.

Earlier this offseason, reports surfaced that the Marlins would dismiss president of baseball operations Larry Beinfest and replace him with vice president of player personnel Dan Jennings. As of late last month, Beinfest's job appeared to be safe. Like Guillen, he’s under contract through 2015.

There’s a “very strong chance” Guillen returns, Frisaro reports. The Marlins haven’t decided whether to fire Guillen, but they’ve started considering possible replacements. ESPN.com’s Buster Olney reported last week that the Marlins are aggressively seeking a replacement for Guillen. Mike Lowell doesn’t appear to be a fit in Miami at this time.

Managerial Notes: Tracy, Leyland, Reds, Twins

The Red Sox officially dismissed Bobby Valentine yesterday, ending months of speculation about his job security. Of course that hasn’t put an end to rumors about managerial openings and potential openings around MLB. Here are today’s managerial notes…

  • Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com hears that there will be no decision made about Jim Tracy's future with the Rockies tonight (Twitter link). The team's front office will continue to discuss things, however.
  • Tigers GM Dave Dombrowski told James Schmehl of mLive.com that they will address manager Jim Leyland's contract "at the appropriate time." Leyland's deal expires after the season.
  • Peter Abraham of The Boston Globe lists some off-the-grid candidates the Red Sox could consider for their managerial opening.
  • Dusty Baker hinted he'll return as the Reds' manager in 2013, MLB.com's Mark Sheldon reports. Baker said “this is my team, you know,” when asked about his future with the Reds.
  • Twins GM Terry Ryan explained to manager Ron Gardenhire that a contract extension for Gardenhire doesn't make sense right now, Phil Mackey of 1500 ESPN reports (on Twitter). Gardenhire is signed through 2013.
  • The Indians announced that Terry Francona arrived in Cleveland for his job interview today. The former Red Sox manager is a leading candidate for the position along with longtime MLB catcher and current Indians coach Sandy Alomar Jr.
  • It’d be a surprise if Francona doesn’t accept the Indians job and name Brad Mills his bench coach, Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe writes (on Twitter). The Astros dismissed Mills, Francona’s former bench coach in Boston, toward the end of the 2012 season.
  • People who know Francona well say the Indians are a "slam dunk" for him, Pete Abraham of the Boston Globe reports (on Twitter). Francona knows he can work with Indians executives such as Chris Antonetti, Abraham notes.
  • The Rangers won't fire manager Ron Washington even if they lose today's play-in game against the Orioles, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports (on Twitter). Washington is under contract with Texas through 2014.
  • Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria is mulling whether to fire manager Ozzie Guillen, Clark Spencer of the Miami Herald reports. The owner has kept front office executives “out of the loop” on the decision, which will be entirely his own call. ESPN.com’s Buster Olney reported yesterday that the Marlins are aggressively seeking a replacement for Guillen.

Mike Axisa contributed to this post.

Marlins Seeking Replacement For Guillen

It appears that the Marlins’ disappointing season will cost Ozzie Guillen his job. The Marlins are aggressively seeking a replacement for Guillen, ESPN.com’s Buster Olney writes (on Twitter). It’s not clear if Miami executives will fire Guillen before finding a replacement.

The Marlins acquired Guillen from the White Sox toward the end of the 2011 season, but the team fell short of expectations, finishing last in the NL East with a 69-93 record. Guillen has three years remaining on the four-year, $10MM contract he signed with the Marlins a year ago. Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reported last month that the Marlins would likely hire a low-priced alternative if they dismiss Guillen. Owner Jeffrey Loria will make the final call.

The Marlins talked extensively about Bo Porter before the Astros named the longtime coach their manager. Mike Lowell's name has come up in connection with the Marlins, but he won't be considered, according to the Miami Herald.

NL East Links: Guillen, Phillies, Lerner, Mets

As Adam Greenberg enjoys his second career Major League at-bat, here's the latest from the NL East…

  • Ozzie Guillen hasn't been told anything about his status with the Marlins' and while he has spoken to owner Jeffrey Loria over the last few days, Guillen's job status hasn't been discussed, writes Clark Spencer of the Miami Herald.  Spencer speculates that Loria won't make a "formal announcement" if he decides to retain Guillen as manager.
  • The Phillies may be more cautious with how they spend this winter, as GM Ruben Amaro hinted to reporters (including MLB.com's Todd Zolecki).  "There are some guys who have some track records, but what guarantee do we have that some of the guys that we may sign for a significant amount of money are any better than the players we have in this clubhouse?" Amaro said.  The general manager also complimented his scouts and said no changes will be made to the scouting department in the offseason.
  • The Nationals' division title is the culmination of owner Ted Lerner's vision, writes Stephen Whyno of the Washington Times.
  • Earlier today, ESPN New York's Adam Rubin reported on several of the Mets' offseason plans.

Managerial Notes: Guillen, Valentine, Varitek, Rockies

The 2012 regular season ends one week from today, and a slew of front office and coaching staff changes are sure to follow. It happens every year. Here's the latest managerial news from around the game…

  • The job of Marlins manager Ozzie Guillen "appears to be in serious peril," reports Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com. President of baseball operations Larry Beinfest appears safe, however.
  • "We've talked – not about that … Which makes me think I'm coming back," said Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine to WEEI.com's Alex Speier when asked if ownership has given him any indications about next year (Twitter link).
  • While the Red Sox and Jason Varitek are discussing a role in the organization, they are not talking about the manager's position according to Heyman.
  • Heyman hears that the Rockies plan to discuss their managerial position even though Jim Tracy agreed to an "indefinite" contract earlier this year. The club makes is sound like he is safe for the time being, however.

NL East Notes: Nationals, Guillen, Phillies

Congratulations to the Braves, who clinched a postseason berth with a win over the Marlins last night. Though Atlanta still has a shot at the NL East title, they're more likely to play the National League's second Wild Card team in a one-game playoff once the regular season ends. Here are some links from the NL East…

Managerial Notes: Tracy, Astros, Ausmus, Indians

Marlins right-hander Heath Bell told Jim Duquette and Mike Ferrin on MLB Network Radio that he made a poor choice of words yesterday when he implied he doesn't respect Miami manager Ozzie Guillen. Bell said he does respect Guillen, but repeated that he doesn't like hearing things through the media. Here are some more notes on managers and managerial openings from around MLB…

  • The Rockies and Jim Tracy could agree to a role change for Tracy within the organization, leaving the team free to hire a new manager, opines Troy Renck of the Denver Post.  Tracy's "handshake deal" with Colorado only guarantees him the manager's job through 2013, Renck notes.
  • The White Sox and Cardinals' decisions to hire inexperienced managers Mike Matheny and Robin Ventura has thus far paid off for both teams, writes Jeff Gordon of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
  • Astros owner Jim Crane says his team has narrowed its search for a manager down to three or four candidates and they hope to have their new field boss in place within a week, reports MLB.com's Brian McTaggart.  An announcement could come later than that if the new manager is currently working for a team going to the playoffs.  Tony DeFrancesco, Tim Bogar, Dave Martinez and Bo Porter appear to be the final field of candidates.
  • While Brad Ausmus is open to interviewing for managerial positions this offseason, he has withdrawn his name from consideration for the Astros’ position, Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports reports (on Twitter). Ausmus, now a special assistant with the Padres, had interviewed for Houston’s managerial opening.
  • Nothing has been decided regarding the future of Indians manager Manny Acta because the organization must first decide on the future of general manager Chris Antonetti, Paul Hoynes of the Cleveland Plain Dealer reports. CEO Paul Dolan and President Mark Shapiro are expected to decide on the future of Antonetti, Hoynes writes.

MLBTR's Mark Polishuk also contributed to this post

NL East Notes: Johnson, Bell, Guillen, Phillies

The Braves' magic number for clinching a playoff spot is one, so they can punch their postseason ticket with either a win tonight over the Marlins, or if the Dodgers and Brewers both lose their respective games this evening.  Atlanta sits five games behind Washington for first place in the NL East, so barring a major collapse from the Nationals, the Braves will have to settle for a wild card, though they're on pace to earn homefield advantage in the wild card game. 

Here's the latest from around the division…

  • Nationals GM Mike Rizzo wants Davey Johnson to return as the club's manager next season and said the two sides have had "initial discussions" about the subject, reports MLB.com's Bill Ladson.  "We both feel comfortable where we are at in that process," Rizzo said. "I said it before, Davey is part of the furniture as long as Mike Rizzo is general manager of the team. I definitely want him back for '13."  Johnson is under contract only as a team consultant for 2013 and the veteran skipper recently said that he was satisfied with current talks and would address his position after the season.
  • Marlins reliever Heath Bell spoke to reporters (including Joe Capozzi of the Palm Beach Post) about his recent comments about manager Ozzie Guillen, saying his remarks were "totally taken out of context."  Bell said he had to "earn the respect back of my teammates [and] my coaching staff" and that he wanted to keep pitching in Miami.
  • Guillen, meanwhile, told reporters (as per Capozzi's Twitter account) that several Marlins players called and texted their support for him in the aftermath of Bell's comments.
  • Though Domonic Brown and John Mayberry have played well for the Phillies down the stretch, there's no guarantee either will have a starting role in 2013, Sam Donnellon of the Philadelphia Daily News.