6:40pm: Despite his connection to Machado, Showalter is not currently in the mix to become the next manager, Kevin Acee of the San Diego Union-Tribune writes.
1:05pm: Padres star third baseman Manny Machado is “letting it be known he would like [the] Padres to at least take a look at” his former skipper Buck Showalter, ESPN.com’s Buster Olney writes on Twitter. Showalter managed Machado for seven seasons in Baltimore.
It’s somewhat unusual to hear of a player suggesting a possible managerial hire. But Machado inked a $300MM deal to join the San Diego organization last winter, so he and the club are joined at the hip for ten seasons (barring intervening developments). That whopping contract perhaps gives him an unusual level of standing in the Padres franchise. And there’s no hint here that he’s demanding Showalter be the chosen candidate.
Showalter would certainly suit the Padres’ desire for an experienced helmsman. The 63-year-old is a grizzled veteran of twenty MLB seasons as a manager. A notably old-school presence around the diamond, Showalter has certainly still had success in the modern game. His O’s teams outperformed expectations and had a notable run of success from 2012 through 2016. After sitting out a year, Showalter is obviously itching to get back at it, as he has previously expressed interest in interviewing for the Mets opening.
At this point, it isn’t known whether Showalter is a realistic candidate for the Padres — or even whether they’ll seriously consider him at all. But it stands to reason the club would at least take a look, particularly now that its highest-paid player has made his preference known.