The Miami Marlins have had a coaching carousel over the last six years of the franchise. Five different "permanent" managers presided over the franchise, and that does not include the half-year stint of Jack McKeon. The Fish have gone through so many managers that their managerial situation has become comical. The latest silliness involved hiring the club's general manager, Dan Jennings, to man the bench despite only a few years of high school managerial experience. Jennings was a scout and front office man for a long time, but there was doubt he could handle the bench.
We are 28 games into the Dan Jennings era, and the Marlins are 13-15. More importantly, the Marlins' brass like him and are actually considering retaining him for the role in 2016.
The quote above shows exactly what the situation is. With any team success in the second half, the Marlins may figure that they have no reason to fire Jennings or return to him a front office role. In order to maintain continuity in the face of success, the club might as well keep Jennings around, especially if the players enjoy playing for him and are rallying behind the new skipper.
More importantly, Jennings is exactly the sort of manager the Marlins often like to have: someone who will not ruffle the feathers of the front office or of owner Jeffrey Loria. Jennings was a part of that front office just months ago, so he clearly thinks along the same lines as the rest of the staff. In that regard, he accomplishes one of the few roles of the manager, which is to translate the moves and desires of the front office over to the bench. You can rest assure that any Marlins acquisition is not going to see diminished playing time, for example, on the whims of the manager.
Also, Jennings is in strong favor with Loria. He previously was supposedly on Loria's side when there was a front office rift between then-president of baseball operations Larry Beinfest and the tempestuous owner. Loria tends to get mad at managers for not falling in line with his prerogatives. Jennings is unlikely to rock the boat given his history with Loria and his generally player's-manager nature.
Of course, this depends on whether Jennings wants to remain manager. If his goal ultimately is to return to the front office, Miami may give him that right and bump him back to his old position. If that is the case, the search begins again for new leadership for a franchise that has not had a consistent voice for years. However, even if Jennings remains manager, do not expect a long contract extension for the role. Jennings is signed to be a front office official already, and with his limited experience, you can bet Miami will find a year-to-year arrangement with him that still keeps their options wide open.
The rest of the season is Dan Jennings's to win or lose. Let's see how he does.