Tag: Bob Melvin

Bob Melvin, Athletics Agree to New Contract: Latest Details and Reaction

The Oakland Athletics are in the midst of a down year, but the team has remained steadfast in its commitment to manager Bob Melvin

According to the team’s official Twitter account, the A’s agreed to terms with Melvin on a two-year contract extension that will keep him in Oakland through 2018. Financial details of the new pact were not disclosed. 

The 2012 AL Manager of the Year led the franchise to playoff appearances every season from 2012 to 2014, and he reiterated Wednesday that he’s looking forward to a future in the Bay Area. 

“I’m fully committed to this team, this organization, and this fan base,” Melvin told reporters Wednesday, according to the team’s official Twitter account.  

Bleacher Report’s Scott Miller was quick to note that Melvin remains one of MLB‘s best managerial minds: 

A’s players—including catcher Stephen Vogtseemed to agree with that sentiment based on their reactions to the news, according to the San Francisco Chronicle‘s Susan Slusser: 

Melvin broke into the managerial ranks during the 2003 season with the Seattle Mariners, and he’s established himself as one of the league’s best baseball minds over the past 12 years.

According to Baseball-Reference, Melvin owns a career winning percentage of .509 with the Mariners, Arizona Diamondbacks and A’s, and that figure has ballooned to .532 since he arrived in Oakland. 

(Bob Melvin) comes in believing he’s going to win,” general manager Billy Beane said at Wednesday’s press conference, according to the A’s Twitter account

With Melvin at the helm, Oakland is primed to throttle back into contention in the AL West as it gets ready to shake off a disappointing 2015 campaign. And given his esteemed track record, fans shouldn’t expect anything less.   

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Making the Case for Bob Melvin as Manager of the Year Again

Though Boston Red Sox manager John Farrell appears to be a runaway for AL Manager of the Year, Oakland A’s manager Bob Melvin has a strong case to pull off the upset.

The Baseball Writers’ Association of America announced the three candidates: Farrell, Melvin and the Cleveland Indians‘ Terry Francona. The winner will be announced on Tuesday, Nov. 12 at 6 p.m. ET on the MLB Network.

Of course there are those who will claim he has no chance, so let’s take a look at the others first. In fact, this tweet doesn’t even list Melvin in the debate:


In his first year with Boston, Farrell led the Red Sox to a World Series victory. Not only that, Boston finished last season with the worst record in the AL East, the third-worst record in the AL and the seventh-worst record in the league. From 69 wins in 2012 to 97 one year later.

You might make the argument that 2012 was a down year. The talent was the same, but the season was marred by dysfunction.

Then again, Farrell proves how much of an effect a manager can have on a team. Good talent with Bobby Valentine? Fail. Same talent with Farrell? World Series winners.

Still, the list of superstars on that team is large.

Their rotation is filled with guys who could all be aces. David Ortiz, Dustin Pedroia, Jacoby Ellsbury, Mike Napoli—these are all big-name guys. As long as they’re happy, they’re expected to compete at a high-level.

Boston.com writer Matt Pepin thinks it’s no contest:


The Indians had the fourth-worst record in the league. With one less win in 2012 than Boston, Francona managed the team to 92 wins this season. That’s an equally impressive turnaround, and Francona did it with less talent.

Terry Pluto of The Plain Dealer explains why he chose Francona:

“Did anyone really believe the Indians would win 90 games this season? Especially if you knew that ace Justin Masterson wouldn’t make one start after September 2? Or that closer Chris Perez would have a nightmare second-half? Or that big-ticket free agents Nick Swisher and Michael Bourn would have seasons that are slightly below their usual standards?”

Then there’s Melvin.

Few expected the A’s to compete in 2012, and in Melvin’s first full season, he led them to 94 wins and a postseason berth. Even so, entering 2013, there were talks of 2012 being a fluke, and the Texas Rangers and Los Angeles Angels still were viewed as heavy favorites for an AL West crown.

And yet the A’s won it again, with ease this time.

Additionally, Oakland improved on last season’s record—albeit not by 20-plus wins like Boston and Cleveland—by two wins, from 94 to 96.

That’s just it, though.

The Red Sox and Indians had those expectations. They have the talent. They have the big-name superstars and big-name managers. If all three teams had the same record, you can guarantee the A’s would come up short in power rankings and in odds.

Melvin improved even though he lost key locker room guys like Brandon Inge and Jonny Gomes. He also lost Brandon McCarthy, Stephen Drew and Chris Carter. Likewise, he had to welcome in and figure out where to play Jed Lowrie and Chris Young.

Beginning the season, Melvin—the entire A’s organization and fanbase really—figured Hiroyuki Nakajima would be the starting shortstop. That didn’t pan out from the start, and Melvin successfully found the solution quickly.

Because he didn’t have the superstars, he turned back to platooning. And that may be the strongest argument in favor of Melvin as Manager of the Year again.

Melvin found a way to do as much damage, with less.

As tweeted by 95.7 The Game, MLB Network’s Greg Amsinger agrees:


Parker started out awful. Melvin stuck with him and he rebounded. Tommy Milone faltered. Melvin adjusted the rotation accordingly. He lost Carter and inserted rookie Nate Freiman into a platoon. Josh Reddick, Yoenis Cespedes and Coco Crisp all missed a big chunk of time, but he made it work.

Writing lineups and running a team is like a puzzle. Farrell inherited a large, eight-piece, colorful and distinct puzzle. Francona put together a 40-piece puzzle of a mostly clear picture.

Melvin chipped away at a 100-piece puzzle with bland colors.

Ultimately, Farrell finished his puzzle first, and it’s prettier. However, Melvin should be heavily considered just based on how well he did constructing his much more difficult puzzle.

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9 Reasons Bob Melvin Is the Key to the Oakland Athletics’ Success

A repeat as AL West champions for the Oakland Athletics starts with manager Bob Melvin. Without him at the helm, it’s not happening this year and it wouldn’t have occurred last season either.

The team is talented, but Melvin pulled the right strings at the right times throughout the 2012 season. With the first base platoon returning and five outfielders for four spots, he’ll have to hope his magic touch hasn’t waned.

Take comfort, A’s fans.

There’s a reason Melvin is a two-time Manager of the Year winner. After nine years of coaching in Major League Baseball, he holds a .502 winning percentage. Furthermore, he’s managed teams to 90 or more wins three times, including in his first full year as Oakland’s manager.

In 2012, he did it with low expectations. Now he’ll have plenty—from fans and management.

The roster hasn’t seen much turnover in the offseason, so Melvin will face similar challenges. However, this time he’ll be more accustomed to the pieces he’s playing with.

These are the nine reasons Melvin holds the keys to the green and gold machine.

You might find that most are no-brainers. Nearly all of these reasons should be written in a manager’s job description. But with a team this young, the role becomes that much more important for success.

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Why Oakland A’s Are Like Baltimore Orioles

Monday, Fox Sports MLB writer Ken Rosenthal wrote a piece that described the Oakland Athletics as a “revolving door of misfits.” He also used a couple other not so inviting words to describe A’s general manager Billy Beane’s highly-performing team. 

From Rosenthal:

If the “Moneyball” A’s were, in the words of author Michael Lewis, baseball’s answer to the island of misfit toys, what the heck is this bunch? An archipelago of All-American rejects, plus one Cuban defector?

Misfit toys?


Cuban Defector?

Come on!

Way to take an inspiring team that has defied expectations and rip it to shreds.

This was my initial reaction of course. But with a few deep breaths and a second read of Rosenthal’s article revealed subtle expression of how Oakland is beautiful for the game of baseball.

Spot on, led by Beane and manager Bob Melvin, this resolute cast of rookies and journeymen has truly been a blast to watch this season.

The Athletics are the West Coast version of the Baltimore Orioles. They are young. They are energetic. And they are a challenge to match up against every day because opposing managers rarely know who will take the hill or what the starting lineup will entail.

Like the Orioles, the Athletics do tons of things that will not show up in the box score.

What this team lacks in headline-grabbing names, it makes up for with outstanding leadership, excellent followership (i.e. leave those egos at the door) and more importantly—a young, vibrant renegade-like psyche that oozes quiet confidence. 

Like the Orioles, the Athletics have mastered the art of resource management. Put the right players with the right skills in the right spots. Manage them effectively, mentor them with sincerity and watch them grow—both as men and as ballplayers.  

This is called professional development. It is rare to see in sports driven by individualism, constant pampering and social networking. But Oakland and Baltimore have instituted this as a way of business.

Like the Orioles, the Athletics have also shown great ingenuity in the face of a troubled economy. Contrary to the Detroit Tigers, Los Angeles Dodgers and New York Yankees, Oakland and Baltimore have traded loading up rosters to win now for creative, outside the box thinking.  

Last, like the Orioles, they make no excuses for injuries. When one man goes down, another picks up the flag, puts his chest out and marches toward victory.

All of this combined, it is no surprise the Athletics and Orioles are proving themselves as true contenders for the postseason.

As a baseball writer (and fan), it will be really exciting to see how loud these little engines will roar down the stretch.

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New York Mets Managerial Search Is Putting Fans to Sleep

According to Mets GM Sandy Alderson, the announcement of a new team manager may come as soon as this Tuesday. The Mets have narrowed their field of possible candidates to four names: Terry Collins, Wally Backman, Chip Hale and Bob Melvin.

Alderson conducted second-round interviews with Bob Melvin and Chip Hale on Tuesday and is expected to finish his meetings with both Wally Backman and Terry Collins on Thursday.

At the moment, the front runner for the position seems to be Terry Collins due to his relationship with Paul DePodesta, who wanted to hire Collins as the manager of the Dodgers at the end of the 2005 season before he was fired as GM. It’s no secret that DePodesta has a lot of confidence in Collins and is pushing hard for his hiring.

If there is anything to be excited about while this process is going on, it is that Wally Backman is still a candidate. The majority of fans favor Backman because of his history with the Mets and his fiery attitude. Hiring Backman would definitely excite the fans the most, and while most baseball insiders dismissed the idea of the Mets selecting Backman, he’s still standing amongst the finalists.

As a fan, none of the possibilities excite me. I guess Backman does, but he doesn’t have any real big league experience as a manager, and the fact that I still don’t expect him to be chosen as the manager prevents me from investing too much in him.

Chip Hale doesn’t make me feel very confident either. I understand he has a good relationship with the players, having been the third base coach last season, but he is just another piece of the Mets’ failures over the last few seasons. According to reports, Alderson was impressed with Hale during the interview process, but I wouldn’t expect Hale to bring anything new to the table.

That leaves just Collins and Melvin. They are the only two candidates with past big league managing experience. Collins managed the Houston Astros for three seasons from 1994-1996, finishing in second place all three seasons before being fired at the end of the ’96 season. He then managed the Angels from 1997 to 1999, but with just 29 games left in the season Collins resigned.

Why did he resign so near the end of the season? Well, because the players basically petitioned ownership to fire him and he decided to resign instead. The Angels were devasted by injuries that season, and if Collins was so unable to handle that locker room to the point where his own players wanted him out, I don’t see how he could possibly handle the current state of the Mets.

Melvin should be the choice only because the other three wouldn’t get the job. The state of the Mets is such that they shouldn’t take a chance on the fiery Backman, the plain Chip Hale, or the player-hated Collins. Melvin is the best choice because he gives the team stability within the clubhouse so that Alderson can begin to focus on rebuilding the roster.

Melvin worked with the Mets in an advisory role last season, and Alderson said he was impressed with his ideas about what the Mets need to do.

No matter who the Mets select on Tuesday, nothing is going to make me do a backflip. Maybe it’s because I’ve sealed myself up to prevent any further disappointment from my baseball team: There’s been just too much over the last four seasons. Backman might excite me, but I don’t think the Mets can afford to take on his baggage right now. If he didn’t work out, then what would they do? Repeat this entire process? No thanks.

The whole process is just a yawn.

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New York Mets Manager Search Update: Melvin and Jauss Complete, Alderson to Cali

The Mets released this press today from GM Sandy Alderson:

“We had productive meetings today with Bob Melvin and Dave Jauss as we begin the interview process for our Manager position.

We”ve scheduled interviews with Wally Backman, Terry Collins and Chip Hale this weekend in California.”

As round one of the managerial search completed today in New York, we can almost see the light at the end of the tunnel signifying the end of a search for a manager and the beginning of the search for players on the field.

The two interviewed today, Bob Melvin and Dave Jauss, is an indication of what we can see for the next week or so: an internal search for a manager.

That’s not to say that the Mets will not be looking elsewhere to fill their managerial void, but to begin the search off, Alderson is content with interview those who have spent time within the organization.

Bob Melvin was brought to the Mets this past season as a scout monitoring the AL East and West. Previously, he managed the Seattle Mariners in 2003 and 2004 and then the Arizona Diamondbacks from 2005 to 2009.

He sports a career 493-508 record as a manager, highlighted by the prestigious NL Manager of the Year for 2007.

His nickname, “The Mad Scientist,” was derived from his ability to switch things up in he clubhouse and in the lineup, which resulted in a certain amount of success.

Melvin could bring a lot to this Mets team as they go through a stage of transition in management. His experience and knowledge of the game, and also the fact that he fits Alderson’s outline for a manager, is something that the Mets need in a leadership role.

If Melvin did get hired, there could be no objection solely based on Melvin’s track records of boosting mediocre teams back to relevancy, which is something we hope the Mets are aiming for.

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Dave Jauss on the other hand is someone who I had previous thought was out the door after Alderson took control of the Mets.

With previous ties to ex-manager Jerry Manuel from the 1980s Montreal Expos, Jauss looked like a goner as soon as ownership dismissed his friend Manuel.

This was not the case and he was interviewed today with Melvin, further representing Alderson’s desire to hire from within.

Jauss served as the Mets bench coach this past season under Manuel and word on him is he is a very baseball-smart, very hands-on type of coach. He would be a decent option to serve as a bridge from this past year’s team to where the Mets vision themselves in the future.

Alderson seems to have a clear-cut description for how he views the next New York Mets manager, and the fact that Jauss is a candidate certainly makes me think that he has got a legitimate chance at landing the job. Either way, the search continues.

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Up next for Alderson, he travels to California on Monday to complete a sports-marketing lecture at Cal Berkley, and while there, as he is quoted, he will be interviewing Wally Backman, Terry Collins and Chip Hale.

As interviews continue to take place, I will be here to break down those candidates who are in the running for managing the Mets with continual posts and breakdowns.

Check back later to read my analysis.

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Bring Back Bobby V: Top 11 Candidates For Mets Skipper

Now that the search for their general manager is over, the Mets can now concentrate on getting a manager.  At the moment, they are in the early stages.  Many names are being mentioned, and we all know that only a few will become serious contenders for the job. 

Sandy Alderson said in yesterday’s press conference that he would like a fiery manager.  That gave this whole situation new life.  Now people are saying that Wally Backman has a real shot to get the job because he fits Sandy’s description of a fiery guy.  The truth is that there is not one front-runner for getting the job.  Everybody has an equal chance right now, and interviews are just beginning to take place. 

Here are 11 people who the Mets might be interested in for their new manager. 

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Mariners Introduce Eric Wedge To Skeptical Seattle Fan Base

This week, the Seattle Mariners rebuffed fan demands and shunned fan favorite Bobby Valentine in favor of former Cleveland manager Eric Wedge.    

Perhaps it’s not the end of the world, because the last time the fans had a favorite, it was for the bench-riding, manager-in-waiting Joey Cora of the Chicago White Sox. Not exactly a household name known for multiple pennants, and not someone other teams have jumped to hire, Cora is known more for cute pins on his baseball cap than his management prowess. 

In Seattle, most fans feel they know more about hiring baseball managers than the Mariners‘ team management does.  

Long-suffering Seattle fans have been very patient with their sports teams, but that patience seems to be wearing thin if initial reactions to the hiring of Eric Wedge is any indication.  Most were aghast with worry, with some older fans still gnashing their teeth at the bad-luck loss of the beloved and cherished Lou Piniella nearly a decade ago.  Nobody seemed to be in a mood for parades or celebrations.   

Yes, we all giggled at the press conference yesterday, with all the witty comments made by kiss-up pundits.  

Yes, we patted Chuck and Howard on the back and thanked them for saving baseball in Seattle and their wonderful two decades of stellar leadership.  

Yes, we acknowledged the seven years of Cleveland bliss under Eric Wedge.  

Yes, we heard all of the futuristic comments of what winning will be like. 

But nevertheless, fans clearly are not buying the sales pitch like they have in years past.

Now I gotta admit, neither was I, which is very odd because normally I’m such a positive guy budding with optimism.  When a used car salesman tells me “this car was driven by an old lady to church”  in spite of the clearly tampered-with odometer on the dented 1973 Dodge Dart, I celebrate!   

When Bill Clinton said he “did not have sexual relations with that woman” and that he used the cigar for smoking and not for—well, you know—I believed Bubba. 

When George W said the “Mission was Accomplished” and the troops would soon be home soon and the world was saved from unsavory terrorists with WMDs, I believed that too! 

When Obama promised the new health care bill would cover everyone in this country and possibly others for “not a dime more than we’re now spending,” I was so very happy!    

Why? Because I am an optimist. That’s just how I am. I believe what most people tell me.

But with this new managerial change for the Mariners, like most fans, I’m finding myself just a tad bit skeptical.   Perhaps it’s because I’ve heard this so many times before? 

Half a dozen times since Lou, we Seattle fans have been told the same thing: that the losing days of old are gone, that the culture will be changed, that this is the guy who will lead us out of the wilderness and into the promised land of milk and honey and World Series rings.

Yesterday, the mystified Mariner management seemed dumbfounded over public skepticism. “Why would they not trust us, we of incredible baseball wisdom long since demonstrated?” And as radio hosts and newspaper columnists danced on tables and were downright giddy over the Eric Wedge hiring, we fans…not so much. There was a muted suspicion of being conned once again, with most fans saying they would wait to pop the corks until they saw what this guy actually did. No, they were not pronouncing judgment of impending doom, but they weren’t caught up in yesterday’s hoopla either.  

Now why would fans be skeptical?  Well, let’s take a look at the press conferences of the last seven managers hired and you might see a pattern:

On November 16, 2002, the Mariners hired 41-year-old Bob Melvin, saying “We think we’ve got a real gem in Bob, as you’ll all learn when you get to know and respect him. He’s going to bring us a winning team and a championship.” 

The local press speculated that Melvin was more even-tempered than the fiery Piniella. Mariners chairman Howard Lincoln said, “He brings to this position not only baseball expertise but high energy, good judgment, intelligence, leadership and communication skills.” Others noted that since he was a catcher and was so much younger than Lou, he would communicate better with the players.  

Less than two years later they fired him.

On October 20, 2004, the Mariners announced the signing of Mike Hargrove, who had led the Cleveland Indians past the Mariners in the 1995 ALCS. 

Mariner management said, “We went for an impact manager, one who can have immediate success on the field.” Others wrote that Hargrove “is saltier, a more savvy figure than Melvin, more along the lines of Lou Piniella, who will be the gold standard for all subsequent Mariners managers.” Still others penned, “As with Piniella, he sees season-long clubhouse management as his top priority.” 

Turns out Hargrove shared one other trait with Piniella.  He was burned out, tired of managing, and thus drove out of town in a red pickup during an eight-game winning streak on July 1, 2007.

Hargrove was succeeded by 55-year-old John McLaren, who the Mariners were again very optimistic about.   Upon accepting the job, McLaren said, “I am really looking forward to the challenge of taking over this club and continuing to build on what Mike has established here. When I came back I said I wanted to be a part of taking this team to the postseason, and back to what our fans expect and deserve. That’s still the case. My focus, and the focus of every one of my coaches is to help these players achieve what they are capable of, and that’s getting this team back to the postseason.”

McLaren had managed in the Toronto minor league system for eight years prior to working as a major league coach. He made his managerial debut with Medicine Hat in the Pioneer League in 1978. He guided Kinston to the first half title in 1981 and managed Southern League Championship clubs in 1984 and 1985. He was named Co-Manager of the Year in the Southern League in 1985. 

But on June 19, 2008, he too was fired by the Seattle Mariners, replaced by Jim Riggleman. 

What did the Mariners say about Riggleman when he got the job? “Jim’s going to bring what we think is a different style than Mac had.  Just the depth and breadth of his experience and how he presents himself.  We’re happy to have Jim!” Others in the community wrote, “He’s a pretty standard-issue manager. It’ll be a huge improvement in terms of consistent lineups and bullpen usage.”  

But apparently experienced standard-issue managers were also not what the Mariners wanted, and he too was fired at the end of the same season, replaced by then 45-year-old and relative unknown Don Wakamatsu.

Wak had no major league experience as a manager.   He had spent five years as a bench coach and third-base coach in Texas, then one year as bench coach for the A’s before Seattle called.  He had never managed above Double-A prior to the Mariners hiring him.  In fact, none of the six candidates interviewed by the Mariners had big league experience as managers.

Nevertheless, pundits exclaimed how Wakamatsu was the first Asian-American manager in major league history, and how he was the first significant hire in the new era of new general manager Jack Zduriencik. The New York Times wrote a special article celebrating how his family had overcome unjust internment during World War II and noted his heritage.

Wakamatsu himself said, “I welcome the challenge here to bring a world championship to Seattle and the fans of the Mariners” and added that “communication and leadership will be key and this will carry over to the team.”

Observers, mostly quite pleased with the hire, noted that the Mariners had a league-worst offense in 2008 and that Wak “had a daunting task to reverse the culture and performance of a team that last season became the first to lose 100 games with a $100 million payroll.” 

In his first year as Mariners manager, the team put up 85 victories, of which a MLB season-high 35 were one-run triumphs, as well as 13 walk-off wins.   Everyone was optimistic and giddy. 

During the spring of this past year, general manager Jack Zduriencik gushed about his own confidence in the Mariners’ clubhouse culture.  “Don Wakamatsu lets players be themselves, and the veteran Ken Griffey Jr. keeps teammates loose with biting humor and nearly nonstop commentary on everything that crosses his line of vision.”

Don Wakamatsu was fired this past August 9th because of the clubhouse culture.  This month team philosophy apparently reversed once again, and now is focused only on experienced managers with a depth of big league experience, according to the same yet unhired Joey Cora.   The Seattle Mariners have settled on Eric Wedge in spite of wailing from the fans yearning for the four decades of experience offered by Bobby Valentine.

Yesterday at the press conference, questions were fired off by hundreds by writers and TV personalities, all skippy and happy (or at least putting on a good act). Optimism was flowing. We the fans are told we should jump for joy over this wonderful new hire for the Seattle Mariners. Things will change. You’ll see. This time it will be different!

Yes, and perhaps that flat-white, dented Dodge Dart did actually only have 10,000 miles on it.

But with a league-worst offense and a spotty pitching staff, surrounded by bad-attitude underperforming free agents with multi-year contracts, this team again looks to be in trouble, and no manager is going to change that without serious help from the front office.   Like years past, and it probably wasn’t a manager issue in the first place.  

Perhaps the team is cursed by a field built over an ancient burial site? 

Whatever the problem is with baseball in this city, I wouldn’t bet your house on the Seattle Mariners going to the World Series with Eric Wedge at the helm.  And I’m sorry if that sounds negative and pessimistic, but we’ve been down this road six times since Lou.


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Brewers Look For New Manager: Pat Listach, Bob Melvin To Be Interviewed

It will be a great homecoming for Pat Listach on Tuesday.

The former Brewer and Astro was informed late last week that Doug Melvin asked the Washington Nationals for an interview for the managerial position, according to MLB.com and the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

Listach was currently beginning a managerial assignment for a Puerto Rican winter ball league, but had to change plans quickly to head back to Wisconsin. He will be meeting with Doug Melvin on Tuesday for an interview.

The situation is not new for Listach, who spent the last two years as the Washington Nationals’ third-base coach. He was passed over the Cubs’ skipper Lou Piniella after the 2007 season, but gained more notice for his work in the Chicago farm system.

If he were to become the 16th skipper of the Brew Crew, it would be his first Major League managerial assignment.

He is reportedly also on Toronto’s short list, although there is no word about whether or not he has been contacted by the Blue Jays’ front office.

Pat Listach played five seasons in Milwaukee, making his debut in 1992. He won the AL rookie of the year in ’92, and also finished 18th in MVP voting for the season. He finished his career playing for Houston in 1997.

Doug Melvin is also looking at other candidate to replace Ken Macha in Milwaukee. Bob Melvin, formerly of the Seattle Mariners and Arizona Diamondbacks, is set to meet with the team on Thursday.

Melvin has plenty of managerial experience, with a lifetime record of .493 with his major league clubs. In 2007 he garnered Manager of the Year honors, with the D-Backs winning the NL West. They cruised past the Cubs in three games before getting swept in the NLCS by the Colorado Rockies.

The playoff experience is certainly going to give him an edge going into the interviews. If the Brewers want Melvin, they may have to move quickly, as the Chicago Cubs are also rumored to be interested in having him head up their squad in 2011.

According to espnchicago.com, Melvin also asked for permission to contact Joey Cora, a current member of the Chicago White Sox coaching staff.

Cora was passed over in 2009 for the Seattle Mariners job, and is a close friend of Milwaukee hitting coach and former interim manager Dale Sveum.

All three seem like good candidates for the job, but smart money is on Melvin getting the job. With the young roster and large amount of work needed to bring this team in contention in the NL Central, experience is going to be key.

Listach would still be a good choice, considering his track record for working with young talent in the Minors, and his history with the team.

Cora seems to be the wild card in this situation, but Doug Melvin has a habit of thinking hard about these kinds of decisions, so rest assured he believes that Cora could handle the position.

It will most likely be a few weeks until the story develops further, but the wheels are in motion. Whether or not a new manager will equal success on the scoreboard is going to take even more time.

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