Whack-a-Manager With Ron Gardenhire

After letting Pat Murphy know he would not be getting the job, the search began for a new manager of the San Diego Padres. Sources are telling us who is being interviewed for the position, so let’s take a closer look.

It’s time to play Whack-a-Manager with Ron Gardenhire!

The New York Mets drafted Gardenhire in the sixth round of the 1979 amateur draft. He played for the Mets for five seasons from 1981 to 1985. In his career, he played shortstop, second base, and third base. Only twice did he play in more than 70 games in a season, in 1982 and 1984. Following the 1986 season he was traded to the Minnesota Twins, where he played one season for their Triple-A affiliate before retiring.

On January 4, 2002, Gardenhire was named manager of the Twins, replacing Tom Kelly, who had won two World Series titles with Minnesota. In contrast to Kelly’s relatively calm coaching style, Gardenhire was a very active and aggressive manager, frequently exiting the dugout to argue with the umpire, leading some to joke that “Gardy” got ejected more times in a season than Kelly did in his entire career.

Gardenhire won the 2010 American League Manager of the Year Award (Bud Black won the National League’s award that same year) and has finished as runner-up five times, in 2003, 2004, 2006, 2008, and 2009. He finished third in the voting in 2002, his first season as manager.

In thirteen seasons as the Twins manager, Gardenhire’s team had losing records five times (2007, 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2014), and won the division six times (the Twins lost a one-game playoff to the Chicago White Sox to determine the division champion at the end of the 2008 season). Despite all of the team’s regular season success under Gardenhire, the Twins advanced to the ALCS only once, and never to the World Series. He is the only manager in MLB history to take a team to the playoffs at least six times and never make it to the World Series, and only one of four with at least four playoff appearances to never appear in it.

Gardenhire earned his 1,000th managerial victory on April 5, 2014 with a 7-3 victory over the Cleveland Indians at Progressive Field. He became the 60th manager in major league history to top one thousand wins. He is only the tenth manager to accomplish this feat with only one team.

On September 29, 2014, Gardenhire was fired after 13 seasons as Twins manager. The last four years of Gardenhire’s tenure were the worst in Twins history. This includes 383 losses and a record of 78-148 from August 1 to the end of the season. His overall regular season record was 1,068–1039 and his playoff record was 6–21

Information compiled from Wikipedia and Baseball Reference.

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