2014 Reds

AP: Dusty Baker Out

About 15 minutes ago, the AP broke the news that Dusty Baker is out as manager of the Reds. John Fay has since confirmed.

I, personally, support this move. I think it was time for Dusty to go. That said, he is, by all accounts, a pretty excellent guy, and we here at the Nation wish him the best.

I have a feeling it’s going to be an interesting offseason. Bob Castellini does not mess around.

277 thoughts on “AP: Dusty Baker Out

  1. Where’s the party at? I’ll bring the cookies!

    I too support this move. While it is impressive making the postseason three times under Dusty, it really seems like two (if not three) of those teams underachieved severely in the playoffs. You’re right Jason, I think it’ll be a wild offseason for sure.

  2. Be careful what you wish for! I am going to happily rip every single mistake the new manager makes.

    • @gschiller13: Good grief. This seems rather petty, particularly since the replacement has not yet been found/announced. For the most part, criticism of Dusty around here’s been rather fair and level-headed. I’d think you should afford the new skipper similar respect.

      Have you provided your list of pre-requisites for the new manager and/or your list of acceptable candidates?

  3. I hope we, as Reds fans, show some class and let the man leave with dignity. He took the team to 3 post season appearances and that is saying something. I wish Dusty nothing but the best. Thanks for all of your efforts.

  4. I’m pretty surprised. Who’s taking over? Brian Price? Someone from the outside?

    • I’m pretty surprised. Who’s taking over? Brian Price? Someone from the outside?

      Corky Miller.

    • @JMac1984: Probably Brian Price, guy’s done a great job. I think it’d be interesting to bring Barry Larkin in. I am a pretty big fan of bringing players back to help run the team. Joe Morgan helping in the front office, Barry Larkin managing, and who knows.. maybe in 2015 (when Selig retires and uses his last act to unban him) Pete Rose as hitting coach? Guys who are Reds through-and-through and know what needs to be done to be successful.

  5. The Dustytax is now a thing of the past! Now WJ can bring in HIS choice for manager. It’s about to get interesting around here!

  6. This is the first win in over a week. Step in the right direction. Hope they are able to keep B Price.

    Thank you Dusty, for your efforts. While I won’t miss you, I salute your 90 win seasons.

  7. Thanks to Dusty for being a huge part of making Reds baseball relevant again. That said, I’ve been vocal that it was past time to move on, and I’m glad the move was made sooner rather than later. I wish Dusty nothing but the best in his future endeavors.

  8. I think that since 2008, Baker was the right manager for the Reds. With that said, I wholeheartedly agree with Steve’s post following the Wild Card loss.

    The big question is who… There are a lot of big names out there right now. Girardi, Gardenhire, possibly Scioscia, and Manuel. I’m very interested in who is brought in to take this 90 win team over the top.

      • @gschiller13: A few names that are actually available are Eric Wedge (underrated I believe) and Manny Acta. Jim Leyland’s contract is up, so whether he’s available will depend on how the Tigers do. I know Leyland is old school like Dusty so you may get aggravated with things like bunts, BUT he holds everyone accountable and is fiery when he needs to be.

        A lot of managerial candidates out there would take the Reds seriously because of the talent level. I think of this as a 1989-type moment. Eric Davis wrote in his autobiography that the first thing Lou Piniella said at the first Spring Training team meeting was that there was way too much talent in that room to not have won a World Series. Four 2nd place finishes and the downer that was 1989 with Pete had held them back. Lou knew what he had an an incoming manager will no doubt see the same and more.

        • @ColgateCrew:

          I don’t thin that anyone has issues with playing “small ball” when necessary, but when the man continuously bunts men over with a runner on second, NO ONE OUT, IN THE FIRST INNING, it is nothing but a wasted out! He did this continuously. If you’re facing Kershaw, I could MAYBE understand it, but with Dusty, that was well beyond “small ball” it was idiotic!

  9. Want to remind everyone about the commenting guidelines here. No personal attacks on each other or members of the Reds organization, and in this case, Dusty Baker. Keep it classy, Nation.

  10. One clarification, the article says it is not clear if he was fired or stepped down. I cannot imagine him stepping down, but he has had health problems.

    All the same, I share the sentiments above. I think it was time, but I wish him well and thank him for all the positive impact he did have on the team.

    • @GRF: AP was quick to point out in the story that I read — Dusty is under contract so it was not likely that he resigned.

  11. Although seemingly a good person and good manager, it is apparent that Baker’s style wasn’t going take the team over the hump. The Reds have had 3 playoff appearances in 4 years. Have won 90+ games in back to back seasons. What do they have to show for it? Heck, the Rangers got to play the same number of games as the Reds this year, and the Rangers didn’t make the “playoffs.” A payroll above $105 million. The Reds now have a two year window with this core group of players. I am celebrating the recognition by ownership that a change was needed to win a World Series.

  12. A few comments were taken down this morning already. The way the software works, when we strike a comment, all the comments that replied to the struck comment also have to be removed and sometimes that means getting rid of comments that otherwise would have been okay.

    Bottom line: while this is big news that likely stirs strong emotions one way or another, try not to be provocative this morning.

    • @Steve Mancuso: Thanks for keeping it classy. In the past there has been a lot of hatred spewed at Dusty that went beyond acceptable criticism and was uncalled for. By all accounts Dusty is a decent and honorable man who genuinely cares about his players and tried his best. Having said that, I do think it was time for a change.

  13. It was time. I hope they hire well. I’m sure they have someone in mind. How about the Oakland manager?

  14. I see the hire being Price Larkin or Riggleman. Riggleman is a quitter I don’t want him. Ivy said my peace about price so I would take Larkin.

    • @gschiller13: Larkin is probably my favorite Reds ever, but for some reason I don’t think he’d be a good manager at this time. I can recall him talking on Baseball Tonight this season about outdated baseball ideologies (importance of RBIs, I think he even said that BP was the teams MVP at some point this year).

      While his allegiance to Cincinnati is about as good as it gets, I don’t think he has the mindset of a good manager yet. I want someone who will think outside of the box. Gimme the guy who won’t be afraid to bat Votto second, who won’t be afraid to use relievers (coughChapmancough) for multiple innings and in any situation. And hopefully the guy who can refresh this team’s memory on how to run the bases better than high schoolers (that shouldn’t be too hard, right?).

      That being said, I think Larkin would be an improvement over Baker, and no matter who they hire I’ll be cheering just as loud as always.

  15. There will be a lot of challenges for the next manager. Namely, who will they bring in to crack a very tight and talented clubhouse? He would have to be a strong personality without disturbing the chemistry.

    • @TC: how talented? No center fielder and bad at ss, 3b, and lf and first baseman had a down year

      • @gschiller13: 2nd year guys at 3rd and SS. They did fine for year 2. Cozart finished strong with numbers I will take and I projected Todd at 20 HRs and 80 rbis. He was not far from that and his glove was better than I expected.

        those 2 get better in year 3. Unfortunately, Mesoraco is still in year 1 due to a former manager who does not like young players

      • @gschiller13: Maybe you have a different view of what the word “talent” means. We have no CF? Maybe. But Billy Hamilton is one the the most talented players in all of baseball. Whether or not you think he translates well into a starter in 2014 is irrelevant (I tend to think he should start in AAA and get promoted if he’s doing well) because the fact is he has tons of talent.

    • @RedZeppelin:

      Good!I got so sick of seeing him strikeout with men on base.

      His “be aggressive and swing at everything/walks clog the bases” approach may have had something to do with the wild flailing at crappy pitches.

      • @Kurt Frost: Correct. Dusty’d philisophy, quotes, and actions actually convinced me that he would rather a player attempt to get a hit and strikeout than walk with a runner on 2nd. That, of course, is folly.

  16. I’m suddenly much more excited for the 2014 season. I wonder what else is in store for the Redlegs this winter.

  17. 100% the right move. Without a doubt. Yes Yes Yes and more Yes.

    We’re not celebrating Dusty getting fired. We’re celebrating the Reds future. There is a difference. This absolutely needed to happen.

    • @brandon11: One more YES! Dusty delivered us from the darkness and helped make us relevant again but the time has come for the torch to be passed.

  18. You know Morgan and Price are on the short list. I’d take either of those. I’ve also seen Larkin’s name being bounced around above in the comments. He has a great job already, but YES, of course, he’s be awesome.

    Price would be my pick. Mostly because he already has the respect of the players, he’s would have input into the next pitching coach, and another team won’t be stealing him.

    • @TC: @WVRedlegs: @TC: Bryan Price would not make a good manager, probably. Pitchers, with some exceptions, rarely do make good managers. I do not know who they bring in as manager, but Charlie Manuel is one of the best hitting instructors in baseball and could really help this team. I would not mind if Speier got an interview or Mark Berry. If you want someone from the Reds system that would be available and has the experience of making teams better, how about Rick Sweet.

  19. BTW – they’re not done yet. I have a feeling there will be a lot of changes up and down the system from a hitting coach perspective.

  20. I think we just need a more cerebral and adaptable version of Dusty to be honest. I don’t think a bull dog is what this team needs, they need a professional who treats them with respect but makes it clear that the needs of the team come first. A Davey Johnson or Felipe Alou type, not a Lou Pinella.

  21. Nice guy. Finished last in the playoffs. Again.

    Couldn’t be happier for our Reds. Soooooooooo curious who the next manager is going to be!

  22. With all due respect to Dusty, this is the move a championship organization makes. The Bengals keep bringing Marvin Lewis back, content to finish 9-7 and lose in the first round of the playoffs. That is the sign of a complacent organization. But the Reds are different and we expect more than an early exit. When an organization comes up short, change at the top is required. Thanks Dusty for your efforts, but it’s time to take this talented team to the next level and bring home a World Series.

  23. I am just very confused why so many think Price would be so great. He has no experience. Please font mention Matheny anyone could manage that lineup

    • @gschiller13: I think the Reds need to do whatever it takes to keep Price. If that means making him mngr, so be it. If he doesn’t want mngr, pay the man to stay as pitching coach.

    • @gschiller@gschiller13: I don’t even know where to start with this. Do you think it’s possible that the Cardinals lineup is so good because of the manager and coaching staff and organizational philosophy? Good grief. It’s not like their lineup is full of Bryce Harper-type hitting prodigies straight from the top of the draft. Guys like Adams and Carpenter and others were low picks who were coached and taught to hit. Baker and Jacoby are happy to let guys just keep doin what they’re doin.

      • @down with dusty: Matt Adams had a 0.900+ OPS in the minors, Carpenter’s OPS was 0.850 (with an OBP >0.400)…both guys were going to hit in the majors given enough time, let’s stop pretending Matheny and his staff “coached” them up and taught them to hit. Adams just crushed the ball in the minors, but Carpenter, in particular, was a lock to perform well given his on base skills.

        That said, the Cards smartly (or a cynic would say, were forced to) put their prospects in position to succeed. The Reds & Dusty Baker have basically put Mesoraco, their best hitting prospect since Jay Bruce, in a terrible position.

        • @CP: Excellent post, I like numbers. I think there may be some middle ground, though. They weren’t top round sort of picks, as DownWithDusty stated, but they did excel very quickly in the Cardinals minor league system. I’d be open to the possibility of a minor league coach and/or organizational philiosphy just making them develop quickly and/or more effectively than they would have on their own. They were good hitters and are good hiiters, so they were going to hit, as you said.

          I think a nice parallel to Mesoraco is Evan Gattis in Atlanta. He wasn’t going to take McCann’s spot, so they tried him out in left field. He wasn’t good, but the idea was still there. “Here’s a great hitting catcher who is behind McCann. We need to get him on the field more often to let him get some ABs.” I know McCann is way better hitter than Hannigan, but I think letting Meso play left a few times wouldn’t have hurt a whole lot.

          • @prjeter: I think if you are going to hire a first time manager this is the situation to do it, not when your team is performing like the Marlins. Give him a chance at early success. Matheny might not be the reason the Cards excel, but he is probably learning his craft better for the Cards than he would for a minor league team or a poor MLB club with no hope.

  24. While Baker might be the best guy in the world, while Baker might have been at one time a great manager, he just didn’t have it anymore. It’s not a bad thing; it happens to all of us.

    Now, his demeanor might have been because of his health. His health may have meant for him not to get too enthusiastic, etc., in certain situations, quite understandable. However, when posed with that, a person needs to recognize that he can’t fully perform his job then if he needs to be more active and step down.

    I know I myself have called Dusty the ultimate “utility fielder” of managers. Another analogy, probably better, would be the “Doug Collins” of MLB. For those not aware, he was Michael Jordan’s first NBA coach. He could never get the Bulls “over the hump”. It took Phil Jackson to do that. Coincidence? That’s what I thought, until Phil did it again with the Lakers and Kobe and Shaq.

    Just remember, odds are drastic we aren’t going to get a “Phil Jackson” to step in here. However, I do think we can get a better person in here, someone who can light some fire around here. Most prominent names out there who I like are Gardenhire and Giraldi. But, I would by no means limit it to those. Like I said before, I would be willing to bet the D-backs weren’t thinking of Gibson when they fired their previous manager, nor the Pirates thinking of Hurdler, nor the Orioles thinking of Showalter. Now, have those managers won a WS? No, but I do like how their team plays day in and day out. If the Reds played like that, even with the same exact record and same finish, I would have supported Baker coming back.

      • @Jason Linden: You may be right. I may be stuck on the fact that Gardenhire did have success with the Twins, I believe a similar market team as ours, like one of the last 3 GM’s we hired (I believe it was Krivsky) from the Twins to develop our club like the Twins were then, who brought in a lot of the players we have here now. It could be possible Gardenhire might be a dinosaur by now, also.

  25. What I can’t understand is the people who make comments like ‘it’s the players fault’ (which it is) and that the manager has nothing to do with the team winning, so are they trying to say that there is no need for a manager?

  26. Personally, I think it would be best if there were no remnants left over from the Dusty regime. As I said yesterday the new manager should be allowed to chose his own staff.

  27. I would like to thank Dusty for all his work these last few years, that being said can-not hire with-in just because we “like” them or they were a “great” player. We need a guy who knows how to win. I trust WJ has his guy already picked. I like Price but I think this team needs a new attitude and I don’t know if he can do that. I’m excited for the REDS and hopefully the new direction and winning path we are about to go down! GO REDS! and once again, goodbye, good luck, and GOOD DAY! Mr. Baker!

  28. For those asking why Bryan Price, it’s because of the job he’s done with the Reds pitching staff the past few years. This article on Price by Mark Sheldon offers a decent window into how Price has operated with the pitching staff.

    That said, being a pitching coach isn’t the same thing as being a manager. It will be up to WJ and BC to figure out if the qualities from one job translate to the other.

    • @Steve Mancuso: Steve I respect your opinions and enjoy your writings. I just cannot agree with you about Price. I would be mad if he gets the job.

      • @gschiller13: You’ve said that a couple dozen times the past few days. But never with an explanation. It would help understand your viewpoint if you could give some reasoning why you don’t think he’d make a good manager. Price has certainly, by all accounts and measures, succeeded at his job with the Reds pitchers.

        • @gschiller13: You’ve said that a couple dozen times the past few days. But never with an explanation. It would help understand your viewpoint if you could give some reasoning why you don’t think he’d make a good manager. Price has certainly, by all accounts and measures, succeeded at his job with the Reds pitchers.

          I agree that Price will be a good manager, But one of if not the biggest problems with this team has been attitude and approach, I just don’t know if a guy you have seen the last 4 or 5 yrs on a daily basis is the guy to bring that. That being said WJ has to look long and hard at him.

        • @Steve Mancuso: I dont like the idea of hiring a pitching coach as manager. Few have succeeded. I want a manager with experience. I dont want someone who is currently a coach. If makign a chance, lets make a change and go outside the organization. And just something about him I just do not like, a gut feeling. Its just my opinion, but I will be grumpy if he gets the job and will criticize every mistake he will make.

          • @gschiller13:
            Go read the Mark Sheldon link about Price. He is EXACTLY THE RIGHT GUY.

            Young Player development



            Already has THE BEST relationship with half the team

    • @Steve Mancuso: I still have questions on Price, also. I don’t know; it may be something the strength and training staff or the medical staff does, but from what I see, I do believe Price has done a good job with the pitchers, but from what I see, also, it seems to me a good number of our significant injuries are coming from pitchers. Masset’s been out. This year with Cueto, Marshall, and Broxton. The 2011 debacle. I believe all seemingly in Price’s second year with the player. Like I said, it could be the strength and training staff or the medical staff and just a coincidence that Price has been the pitching coach at the time. Not that I don’t want Price out, not that at all; I believe he has done a good job with the pitchers. Something just doesn’t sit right me about Price getting more control. I am still getting use to his development of the pitching staff.

      • @steveschoen: Show me a pitching staff that has no injuries. Did you already forget about last year, when 5 starters never missed a start?

        • @VaRedsFan: First, a starter did miss a start last season. Second, like I specified, which of that group was in their second year with Price? Answer? None of them. Third, have you ever heard of a fluke? You know, those things that fate just sort of wills them into being, then immediately takes them back? You talk like an entire staff of starters not missing a start happens every season for every team, or even every season for Price, which it of course hasn’t happened. Lastly, yes, everyone gets injured. I specified that it’s just seemed to me that a majority of our significant injuries have been to pitchers.

  29. The Fed Ex guy came in and ask me if I’d heard the news. I thought he was pulling my leg. I would be willing to bet he quit because they wouldn’t give him a contract past next year.

  30. Reason prevails.

    I logged in to relay what I just heard, on replay, during the LA/Atl game. The announcers were talking about Mattingly almost getting canned in June. Someone said that Baker said he likes to slow the game down during the playoffs… Then they talked about how Mattingly has said that the game is fast, and you have to always be thinking, on your toes. That there was a sense of urgency in June, and that they (the announcers) think that certainly applies to post-season play.

    Sense of urgency all year round.

    I vote for Bryan Price, unless someone has a better idea.

  31. I wonder how close (if at all) Jocketty was to getting the “axe” ? Ask any reds fan and they will bring up his shortcomings in a heart beat

    • @zab1983: All GM’s make mistakes. Where would this team be though without the big (surprise) deals he’s pulled off the last few years. Starting with Rolen and Chapman, and more recently Latos and Choo.

      • @Greg Dafler: Rolen helped us for 1/2 season in 2010. After that he was constantly hurt, and performance was awful. was that the deal when we traded Encarnacion? You think toronto is happy about that deal?

        • @VaRedsFan: Toronto was so happy with Encarnacion that they let him go on waivers to Oakland after the 2010 season. But yes, after Oakland later released Edwin, the Blue Jays have been happy with the free agent contract they signed him to.

          Yes Rolen’s bat contributed to the Reds losing September/October, but I don’t know if the Reds make the playoffs that year without Rolen’s defense and first half offense.

          • @Greg Dafler: I’ll be honest with you, with his uptick the second time around in Toronto I was surprised that Encarnacion was not on the Biogenesis list.

    • @zab1983: I just read an article that said Dusty had to fight with Jocketty to get Billy Hamilton brought up to the Reds. Also the article said Dusty was disappointed in the lack of any trade deadline moves. Sounds like to me the problem with the Reds not improving is the front office.

  32. WWWWOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  33. I think myou have to take a hard look at morgan. as much as he sits with Castellini during games… you know they have had lots of discussions. I also think price bears a look though I do not want the hiring to be based on whether we lose him to another team.
    five years ago I say no way concerning morgan… but he brings infinite baseball knowledge along with a fiery personality.
    on the other hand, he shows seemingly no interest in the new statistical way of looking at the game.

    • @wizeman: I love Joe Morgan. But as you say, if you are someone who couldn’t stand Dusty for his lack of acceptance of some of the so called ‘new’ stats behind baseball, Joe Morgan would come from the same school of thought.

  34. I sincerely wish Dusty the best. I want to thank him for changing the culture around here. No matter your thoughts on him, he brought playoff baseball back to Cincinnati and for that, I will always thank him.

    That said, I fully support this move. He had taken us as far as he could as Steve wrote. It’s time to start a new chapter.

  35. I don’t care if Dusty got the boot or if he left on his on terms (which I could see) either way it guarantees that I’ll renew my ticket package for 2014. As the saying goes in football the backup QB is the fan favorite when the starter isn’t getting the job down. Doesn’t mean the next guy up will be better, but a change is/was warranted. Go REDS Go.

  36. AP already has riggleman and price thrown out there as leading candidates. Time for the stat boys to start looking up how Riggleman used to manage the cubs and nats lol

    • AP already has riggleman and price thrown out there as leading candidates. Time for the stat boys to start looking up how Riggleman used to manage the cubs and nats lol

      Riggel quit on his team in Washinton. NO!

  37. Now, I will say this isn’t the only thing needed to be done. Bringing in new players wasn’t going to the only answer. Baker needed to be replaced, also. Now, while a new manager “and hitting instructor” could help the offense, I still wouldn’t put aside that there could be some players out there who can help us. But, I’d be willing to see what the new manager “and hitting instructor” can do.

  38. most likely totally improbable but how would u people feel about larussa being the skipper round here?

  39. I stole this from an nbcsports.com article. Good stuff.

    And, no matter who it is, I hope the first question the guy is asked in an interview was what he thinks of Joey Votto‘s walks, followed by a question about what he thinks about Brandon Phillips‘ RBIs followed by a question about bunts, followed by a question about when he would have pulled Johnny Cueto in Tuesday night’s wild card game.

  40. I hope they replace him with someone that is not afraid to discipline poor effort by benching or fining the player. The attitude must change in Cincinnati. Don’t go all “Ray Knight” on them but this group could sure use a little “Lou Pinella”. Someone who has been there and done that and expects 100% effort. I heard someone mention former Red and HOFer Barry Larkin a few days ago. I think he would be GREAT for the players and fans. His youth and experience would be a great fit for this club. Barry’s played for both Lou and Pete, he’s a hometown guy and would help fill the seats. Similar to a move the Yankees made when they hired Joe Girardi. Barry, Barry, Barry!

    • @Benchwarmer: great players don’t make great coaches. I think the reds should go with somebody as least “red” as possible, break the hex

    • I hope they replace him with someone that is not afraid to discipline poor effort by benching or fining the player.The attitude must change in Cincinnati.Don’t go all “Ray Knight” on them but this group could sure use a little “Lou Pinella”.Someone who has been there and done that and expects 100% effort.I heard someone mention former Red and HOFer Barry Larkin a few days ago.I think he would be GREAT for the players and fans.His youth and experience would be a great fit for this club.Barry’s played for both Lou and Pete, he’s a hometown guy and would help fill the seats.Similar to a move the Yankees made when they hired Joe Girardi.Barry, Barry, Barry!

      I’ve heard Larkin say way too many stupid things as an analyst to want him as a manager.

        • @Kurt Frost: I think it’s an MLB Network thing.Can anyone say Harold Reynolds?I think he’s the best analyst on the network.

          Harold Reynolds comes off like an idiot. If it’s shtick it’s embarrassing.

  41. Manager – Barry Larkin
    Hitting coach – Sean Casey
    Pitching coach – Bryan Price
    Bench coach – Greg Vaughn
    Bullpen coach – Jeff Brantley

    Why not?

    • @kramer1: at this point the sports in cincy need as little “cincy” people as possible….we need to break the cincy hex

      • @zab1983:

        I disagree. I think we need to do the opposite. Like George Costanza said….”If what he did was always wrong, then the opposite must be right.”

    • @kramer1: A number of other former Reds would be on that list.

      Mario Soto
      Ron Oester
      Tony Perez

      … some of these guys are not interested in this sort of work anymore. Soto would be great as a pitching coach.

      Oester just played hard.

      Eric Davis goes on any list.

  42. A huge tip of the Reds cap to Dusty Baker. Under his watch the Reds have gone from fair to relevant, and this stretch of playoff appearances is much appreciated. The recent Reds success is not all his responsibility, nor is the inability to go deep in the playoffs entirely his fault. But this is a better Reds team and a stronger Reds franchise in part because of Dusty Baker. He seems to be a good man, I certainly appreciate his contributions to my favorite team, and I wish him every success and happiness moving forward. Thank you Dusty Baker.

  43. In all honesty, I’m glad we have Walt Jocketty to make this decision. I have full trust in him to find the right manager and Mr. Castellini to make it happen.

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