4:08pm: The three-year term on Shildt’s contract includes the current season, as Shildt’s new contract runs through the 2020 campaign, per Jen Langosch of MLB.com (on Twitter). The Cardinals have formally announced that Shildt has shed the “interim” label on his title and is now the full-time manager.
2:35pm: The Cardinals will make official today what had increasingly become obvious: interim manager Mike Shildt is going to stay in the job beyond the present season. He’s slated to receive a three-year contract in addition to having the interim label removed. Bob Nightengale of USA Today (via Twitter) and Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch (Twitter link) had the news.
Since taking the helm of a club that was sitting just one game over .500 just past the season’s halfway point, Shildt has guided the Cards to a 26-12 record. The club is now firmly back in contention. Of course, numerous roster moves came along with the firing of Mike Matheny, and it’s always hard to allocate praise and blame for managerial performance, but the organization obviously had cause to be pleased with the early returns on the new skipper.
Shildt opened the year as the Cards’ bench coach, which in and of itself represented a remarkable rise in the game. He never played professionally and was first came to the St. Louis organization as a scout. Shildt rose steadily from there, ultimately becoming a manager in the lower minors and climbing the ranks to run the team’s top affiliate. He came to the MLB staff in 2017 as a quality control and then third base coach.
The Cardinals know Shildt well and are clearly impressed with his work to this point, though it’s nonetheless a bit surprising to see them remove the “interim” label from Shildt after just 38 games. Typically, even when organization have hired an interim manager on a full-time basis, he’s but one of many candidates amid a larger search at season’s end. That won’t be the case with Shildt, who has already overwhelmingly captured the hearts of many Cardinals fans and drawn praise from both his players and fellow coaches.