Late last week the Detroit Tigers announced Brad Ausmus won’t return in 2017. Who will take the role as the Tigers’ skipper in 2018?
Detroit Tigers‘ fans everywhere are rejoicing as the days of seeing Brad Ausmus in a Tigers uniform is set to end this season. Ausmus will be remembered for literally doing nothing. He always sat on his butt in the dugout, was unemotional, and failed to teach young players how to play the game. Ausmus’ reign took the Detroit Tigers from one of the most feared teams in baseball, to a team competing for the #1 overall pick in 4 seasons. He was a disgrace to this team and to the organization.
Okay, rant over. We are rid of him. He is gone and thank God for that. Now we will have a chance to see what a real manager is like. Whoever the Tigers’ organization decides to hire will have a lot on his plate. The Illitch family wants to compete, but realizes the next few seasons will be rebuilding years. The next Detroit Tigers’ manager will be responsible for heading this young team, and teaching the next generation of Detroit Tigers to be the best players they can be. But who would be capable of such a responsibility?
The number one option.
If the Tigers decide to keep in house, Omar Vizquel would be the number one option to replace Brad Ausmus. He has incredible passion and love for the game of baseball. In fact, he has been involved in the MLB for the last 27 years. As soon as Vizquel retired from the MLB he became a infield instructor in the Angels‘ minor league system. Since then he has been the first base coach for the Detroit Tigers and is now the leading candidate to be their manager.
Vizquel even wants to be a manager. He said, “I always wanted to manage after I retired, so obviously you’ve got to start somewhere. This is a baby step towards becoming a manager, so I really have to absorb as much information as I can… how to treat guys, how to handle different aspects of the game, the pitching and the outfielders and everything. I’m striding in the right direction right now.”
Now Vizquel has done just that. He has been with the organization for the last three seasons and has learned how to interact with players and how to teach the game of baseball. Even at just 49 years old, he would have more knowledge about baseball than any other candidate. The players also know him, and love him as a coach. This would be the easiest, and most logical move to fill the position.
Who else is available?
Another viable option is Ron Washington. Washington was the manager of the Texas Rangers for seven years. In that time frame he lead the Rangers to two AL Pennant victories and a World Series. He is a very good manager and has a record of 666-611 (52%). The downsides to this hire would be that he hasn’t managed a major league club in 3 seasons, and is 65 years old. These two things definitely would not be in line with the youthful movement the Tigers are going for.
The Detroit Tigers could also go with another in-house name in Lloyd McClendon. McClendon is not someone that has seen a lot of success as a major league manager. He was the Pittsburgh Pirates manager, at the age of just 42, from 2001-2005. Then he was an assistant under Jim Leyland in Detroit until the Mariners hired him for two season. Yet, McClendan’s record is just 499-607 (45%). I am not a fan of hiring McClendon, and if we do, I could see many more years of bad baseball coming from Detroit.
While these three options are probably the most favorite, fans were totally wrong four seasons ago after Leyland retired. Many thought Ron Gardenhire would be the man along with other names like Dusty Baker. However, we hired some no name with no experience in Ausmus. Look how that turned out… I believe that Al Avila is the right man to be searching for a new manager. And whoever he chooses will be an upgrade from Ausmus.