A new week, a new managerial candidate for the vacancy in Miami. Rick Renteria can now be added to the conversation after it was reported that the Marlins have held talks with the former Cubs skipper. However, no official interview has taken place as of yet. With all of the speculation swirling around Miami, this article summarizes the main names that have been repeatedly mentioned. Mainly, to help Marlins supporters keep track of what is going on!
Don Mattingly - the front-runner
The Marlins seem to have made it clear that Mattingly is the man they want to take charge of this team. The problem is, and he has just become available. The Dodgers were eliminated from the playoffs in the NLDS and are still chasing their first World Series crown since 1988, this was the final straw. The organization is seeking championships, and Mattingly hadn't delivered one in the five years he was manager there despite three straight NL West titles.
But, would Mattingly even consider Miami? The front office has definitely been a distraction to the team this year, and the atmosphere appears difficult from the outside looking in. On the contrary, he would have a fantastic core of young players to work with and the Marlins are not in "World Series or bust" mode; they are, first and foremost, looking to break a streak of six consecutive losing seasons. Therefore, there would be less pressure on him than when he was in the dugout for the Dodgers.
Last week I wrote about rooting for the Mets to beat the Dodgers so that Don Mattingly might become available to Miami. This came true, and Don Mattingly is the best possible candidate for Miami at the moment.
Larry Bowa - the veteran presence
Bowa, and candidate number three, are the only candidates to have interviewed twice for the Marlins so far. He has managed the Phillies and the Padres in the past, and he has been around the game for a very long time. This knowledge would be perfect in molding Miami's young core so that they can achieve their potential. At 69 years-old, his age is a double-edged sword though as the organization wants to use analytics more in the future, and Bowa is a traditional manager who does not typically utilize those strategies. He may be the clubs insurance if Don Mattingly doesn't buy what the Marlins are selling.
Phil Nevin - the promising rookie
After leading the Reno Aces (Triple-A) to a winning record in 2014, Phil Nevin has started to gain credibility as a legitimate future major league manager prospect. The 44 year-old belted over 200 home runs in his playing career and hit for a .270 career average, so he is no stranger to success. His age means that he would presumably be more open to incorporating analytics into his managerial style, which is what the Marlins are looking to achieve.
The Fish may have been left with a sour taste in their mouths over their last two rookie skippers (Mike Redmond and Dan Jennings) though, which means that Nevin may not get the job in the end. Likewise with Bowa, the Marlins may just be searching for alternative options to Mattingly, just in case they can't get their man.
In conclusion, the chase for Mattingly's signature is on. While he is clearly the front-runner for the job, Miami is doing a good job in making sure that they don't put all of their eggs in one basket. This process cannot be rushed, but it also can't take too long as the team will have to start making roster upgrades soon if they want to compete next year. The right manager can take this team to the promised land, but who will it end up being?