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.