The topic of who might manage the Giants next season just keeps on coming up. Even as long ago as last season, there was agitation to fire Felipe and speculation as to who might replace him. But I thought a little more depth on the various candidates might be more interesting fodder for discussion. The first installment covers current Giants bench coach Ron Wotus.
Born: Colchester, CT
Age in 2007: 46
Managerial Experience: 7 seasons in Giants farm system; reached the postseason six times. Managed Shreveport to Texas League championship in 95. Named Manager of the Year twice (Cal League 91, PCL 97). Overall .574 winning percentage (554-412).
Coaching Experience: Giants 3rd base coach 98, bench coach 99-06. A former infielder, he also works with the infield defense.
Playing Experience: As a middle infielder, he had an 11-year minor league career, and two cups of coffee with the Pirates in 83 and 84.
Buzz: He has to be considered the favorite among internal candidates. He was a candidate for the job in 2002, and was also under consideration by the Dodgers after last season. Sabean has acknowledged him as an "up-and-coming" managerial candidate.
Pros: He has managed before, even though only in the minors, and teams he has managed have won consistently. Knows the players and the organization well. His coaching specialty, infield defense, has been one of the Giants strong points.
Cons: No big league managing experience, in particular no postseason experience. Never a star player, which some might feel would make it harder to command respect of players.
Quotes: "His knowledge of the game is second to none. [...] He's had nothing but success at every level, and he's learned the game from some great people." - Rich Aurilia
"I always manage in my mind." - Ron Wotus on being ready to fill in for Felipe during a suspension.
LADugout.com profile from last year when he was a candidate to manage the Dodgers.
See the diary My Beer With Ron Wotus by the Mayor of 311 for a first-hand account of a brief talk with Wotus.
Along with Erik Johnson and Joe Millette, he runs Get Up and Go Baseball and has co-authored a book on coaching youth baseball.