Veteran baseball man Dave Magadan can be counted as one vocal supporter of Mets managerial candidate Tim Bogar, as the longtime MLB coach spoke of Bogar’s virtues to Mike Puma of The New York Post (link). Magadan, who has worked with Bogar on several coaching staffs, describes Bogar as a “sharp”, “attention-to-detail guy” capable of integrating analytics while still relating to players. Magadan says that coaches and players were very surprised that Bogar didn’t get the Rangers managing job that he held in an interim capacity after the resignation of Ron Washington in 2014. “We all thought he was going to get the job there in Texas,” Magadan says in Puma’s article. “Especially after we turned things around that last month, and it didn’t happen and we were all kind of surprised.” The Rangers ultimately gave the full-time gig to Jeff Banister despite Bogar’s 14-8 interim record, while Bogar ended up undertaking some front office work with the Angels before a coaching stop with the Mariners and, ultimately, the Nationals. Bogar interviewed with Mets leadership for the second time on Thursday, although Eduardo Perez has since been described as the “front runner” for the position.
More manager-centric notes from around the game…
- The Red Sox, Padres, and Indians are speculated as three potential landing spots for Bruce Bochy if the former Giants manager decides to make a 2021 dugout return, reads a piece from Grant Brisbee of The Athletic (link). Brisbee sees current Sox manager Alex Cora as “probably safe, but not with another disappointing season”. While it may seem odd at first glance to envision a Cora-Bochy transition, the writer is probably justified in believing that Boston’s leadership will likely have World Series-or-bust aspirations under new GM Chaim Bloom, given that the club has shown a willingness to move on from championship-winning executives like Ben Cherington and Dave Dombrowski in recent years.
- Rustin Dodd of The Athletic identifies Dave Martinez’s bilingual capabilities as a key ingredient to the manager’s success (link). Dodd relays a tale from Martinez’s experiences as a player in the Puerto Rican winter leagues, where his lack of Spanish fluency did nothing to endear him to local fans and media (one game saw a 6-foot piece of barbed wire thrown in Martinez’s direction, according to the story). These early struggles promoted Martinez to turn to Benito Santiago and Juan Nieves for Spanish instruction. Nationals GM Mike Rizzo, for one, believes that those skills have been vital to Martinez’s relationships with young players like Juan Soto and Victor Robles. This piece comes just days after–according to reports–the Spanish skills of new Padres manager Jayce Tingler were considered a decisive factor in his hiring. In 2019, game-wide Opening Day rosters featured 251 players of international origin, with 102 of those players hailing from the Dominican Republic. It stands to reason that Spanish-speaking managers like Martinez and Tingler may soon become the overwhelming norm as the demographics of MLB continue to evolve.