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Manuel Getting in Shape, Hoping for Another Shot

Posted by Pat Gallen, Wed, October 23, 2013 08:06 AM | Comments: 8
Analysis, News, Opinion, Posts

World Series Trophy

Five years ago to the day, Charlie Manuel led the Philadelphia Phillies into the World Series, eventually beating the Tampa Bay Rays roughly a week later. Yesterday, Manuel was talking about job openings around baseball.

Charlie Manuel popped up on a Detroit sports radio station, 105.1, and spoke with The Diesel show, expressing interest in the Tigers managerial opening. Manuel said he is getting himself in shape and hoping to score one of the vacant jobs.

At nearly 70 (he hits that number in January), Manuel says “Condition-wise, I feel tremendous,” Manuel said. “I’ve still got the fire. I’ve got a full tank. I’m still very much in the game.”

Whether or not other teams will believe that is another story. Ryne Sandberg, Mike Matheny, Bryan Price, Walt Weiss, Mike Redmond, Robin Ventura, and Bo Porter are all recently-hired managers that are much, much younger than Ol’ Chuck. It’s becoming a younger-man’s game at the managerial spot.

Take for instance the man Manuel would like to replace, Jim Leyland. He’s retiring at 68 – although I think we can all agree he seems much older. Davey Johnson spent two-plus seasons as Nationals manager, and decided he’d had enough following this year at 70.

We hope for the best for Charlie Manuel, but it seems to me it’s a long shot a team will want to hand the reins over to him at 70 and beyond.

Here is the interview on 105.1 in Detroit.

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About Pat Gallen

Pat Gallen has written 1704 articles on Phillies Nation.

Pat is Editor-in-Chief of Phillies Nation. He also covers the Phils for 97.5 FM in Philly.

 
 
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    • Posts: 0 Philsmania

      Counterpoint: Didn’t Jack McKeon win a WS when he was in his ’70′s?

       
      • Posts: 0 George

        That may be true, but it was also a few years ago when teams weren’t always signing young guys as managers. Most ML managers are younger these days.

        It’s too bad that so many people undervalue the experienced person, calling him “old” or “set in his ways.”

         
  • Posts: 0 wbramh

    Stengel won a pennant in 1960 and was summarily fired after the season; not because the Yanks lost the series to a scrappy Pirates team but because of his advanced age.

    Stengel’s wonderful response to being fired because he had turned 70 was, “I’ll never do that again.”

    Charlie isn’t quite the character Casey was but none are and few ever were. Still, he’s a bona fide character in his own right and in a game filled with cardboard cut-outs on the bench. The game may or may not be poorer without Charlie but it sure will be duller.

     
  • Posts: 0 Ken Bland

    “We hope for the best for Charlie Manuel, but it seems to me it’s a long shot a team will want to hand the reins over to him at 70 and beyond”

    Tell ya a little secret. While the door appears to be closing on Charlie’s managerial aspirations for next year, with it, the high number of people who thought he was through as a skipper is expanding.

    I’m quite for sure rock solid certain I’m like the only guy on the planet that thinks that a year from now he might have a fairly half decent chance despite the extra year of age.

    He needs right place, right time. His age, to me is pretty secondary.

    2 years out might be different, but I’m not one to write his chances off for 2015 because of old getting older. Some team basically just has to think he’s the man to run their club.

     
  • Posts: 1135 EricL

    Avatar of EricL

    Buster Olney has a good article up today about the changing managerial landscape in baseball. Front offices are now looking for guys who are willing to implement the strategies their analysts consider optimal. This means the job of being a manager is changing from one in which he makes all the on-field decisions into being the guy who serves as the conduit through which the front offices’ strategies are implemented.

    I think that’s why you’re seeing a shift away from the traditional, “old school” type managers, and it probably doesn’t bode well for Charlie’s job opportunities. That said, there are still a few clubs around that don’t worry too much about research and advanced statistical analysis, so he might have a shot in some of those cities.

     
    • Posts: 0 wbramh

      Buster Olney probably has it right and that would dim Charlie’s chances but I think unfairly. Since the manager is less the implementer of statistics than the GM and more limited to the role of player conduit you would think that Charlie’s decisions wouldn’t necessarily be too much different than those of a younger manager who grew up in the computer age. Plus, players love and respect him as a leader.

      If his mind is still alert and his body is willing he might even learn a new trick or two. It would be interesting to see him coach the Nationals to a division championship next year. Ruben’s eye’s would tear up again and stay that way. If I were the Nationals’ GM I’d choose Charlie over Mattingly (who’d jump at the chance to leave LA before LA leaves him) or any of the untried coaches currently with the team or around the league whose names have been dropped as candidates.

      Charlie is sharper at 70 than Danny Ozark was a 50 – and Ozark took the team to 3 straight division championships. Has the game really changed all that much on the field?

      Maybe I’m prejudiced being 65 and still feeling (semi) useful in the World but I suspect Casey would have lead the yankees to 4 more pennants had they not released him after the ’60 season… and just for the Charlie’s crime of turning 70.

       
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