Twins let go of entire coaching staff

REUTERS/Rebecca Cook
Ron Gardenhire

Remind me, was it Gardy who signed Ricky Nolasco? Reaction to the Twins firing Ron Gardenhire and his staff is easy to come by. The AP says, “[GM Terry] Ryan gave Gardenhire a two-year contract after last season, blaming himself for the roster he assembled. But this winter, the Twins spent big on Hughes and fellow right-hander Ricky Nolasco in an attempt to upgrade the rotation. Veteran catcher Kurt Suzuki was added, too, and made the All-Star team. But despite the emergence of prospects Danny Santana and Kennys Vargas, the Twins simply didn’t make enough progress to avoid a shakeup. Nolasco’s rough debut season and Joe Mauer’s down year in the switch to first base were major disappointments, but bringing Gardenhire back for another year would not have gone over well with an increasingly frustrated fan base.”

At SBNation, Grant Bisbee writes, “Instant reaction: The move feels just a touch unfair. Call it the Lousy Team Paradox: What would another manager have done with the roster Gardenhire was given? Bruce Bochy, Tony LaRussa, Earl Weaver … pick the manager of your choice and give him an Opening Day roster with Pedro Florimon on it. The Twins decided to spend on free agents this year and came away with Ricky Nolasco. That’s going to hose them for the next three years. That’s not Gardenhire’s fault.”

Josh Hill at FanSided says, “According to Jon Morosi from FOX Sports, the Twins will strongly consider Hall of Famer Paul Molitor to replace Gardenhire as manager. Molitor would be a great choice for the Twins, as he’s been with the team for what seems like forever and knows what the club represents. He played for Tom Kelly back in the 90s for the Twins and has been in the organization for over a decade. He’s not the only choice out there, as the Twins may look at some bigger names, but Molitor seems like the type of hire the ballclub could make … .”

The Strib’s LaVelle E. Neal says, “Two names the Twins could be interested in, according to someone with knowledge of the Twins’ thinking: Tory Lovullo and Joe McEwing. Lovullo currently is Boston’s bench coach and is considered a hot commodity. He recently met with the Houston Astros about their vacancy. McEwing is the third base coach for the Chicago White Sox. He has a relationship with Brian Dozier from the time Dozier spent in the Arizona Fall League. And he’s well-respected in the game.” I’d think the Latin guys would love to work for Ozzie Guillen. Besides Ozzie’s always a good quote.

Tyler Conway at BleacherReport says, “Firing Gardenhire is not a surprise from a performance standpoint; the Twins are nearly a half decade into their recent futility. It is, however, a change of course from an organization that hasn’t fired a manager since Ronald Reagan’s first term. General manager Terry Ryan also told reporters last month that Gardenhire was not in any danger of losing his job. ‘Same stuff. He is signed for next year, so you don’t have to worry about him,’ Ryan told Sid Hartman of the Star Tribune. The Twins were not appreciably worse in September than in other months, so it’ll be interesting to see the team’s overall reasoning.”

MPR’s Brett Neely is the latest to wade into this fall’s remarkably unengaging campaigns. He writes, “Jobs, terrorism, health care: Just what is this year’s election about? Unlike past years, when campaigns focused on the Iraq War or the recession, it’s a little harder to find a clear campaign theme this year, especially in the races for Congress. Few candidates are talking about what they actually plan to do. In a time of deep political division, perhaps it’s no surprise that there’s not even any agreement about what issues to fight about. It’s easier for campaigns and their allies to play to the public’s discontent with Congress.”

He’s big in the Midwest … Says Patrick Condon of the Strib, “New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, who is campaigning Monday in Hudson, Wis., for Gov. Scott Walker’s re-election bid, also has plans to campaign for Jeff Johnson in Minnesota in two weeks.  Johnson’s campaign confirmed Monday that Christie, the chairman of the Republican Governors Association, would appear with Johnson on Oct. 13.”

Spring ACT testing of state high school kids still has people upset. In the St. Cloud Times the story says, “The tests replace the Graduation Required Assessment for Diploma, or GRAD, that lawmakers phased out. Minnesota is the 12th state to give every high school student the ACT and one of a handful of states to require it for graduation. That requirement doesn’t sit well with everyone. Lakeville school board members debated the merits of requiring the college-entrance test, ahead of a required public hearing to discuss the district’s college- and career-readiness plans. Board member Michelle Volk questioned why there was no way for parents to opt out of the test if their child already had taken it or they felt it was unnecessary.”

Well, keep the thing away from that Vikings stadium … . Vicki Gerdes of the Forum News Service says, “For the past 60 years or so, the beautiful songbird known as the golden-winged warbler has been in serious decline. ‘We’ve lost about 60 percent of their population over that time,’ says Peter Dieser, public lands coordinator for the American Bird Conservancy. ‘That’s about 2.5 percent per year.’ ” Roughly half of the remaining population of Golden-Winged Warblers comes to Minnesota to breed, however. ‘We’re a stronghold for the population,’ Dieser said. So for the past year, he has been working on a project at Tamarac National Wildlife Refuge to expand and strengthen its habitat.”

The Strib’s Jon Bream checks out Prince’s two new albums: “ ‘Art Official Age,’ the Prince record, and ‘PlectrumElectrum,’ with 3rdEyeGirl, are his first U.S. albums since 2009’s ‘LotusFlow3r/MPLSound,’ a triple-CD that was a Target exclusive. The following year, he offered ‘20Ten’ only in Europe, distributing it via newspapers and magazines. The two new discs are his first for Warner Bros. since 1996, when he acrimoniously left the label that signed him as a teenager and was his home for 19 years. ‘Plectrum’ is the more fully realized and satisfying disc. It’s more energetic, emotional and exciting.”

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Comments (2)

  1. Submitted by David Wintheiser on 09/29/2014 - 04:02 pm.

    Poor Bleacher Report

    Can’t buy a break. I realize that “Reagan’s first term” sounds better than “Reagan’s second term”, but the Twins have actually fired two managers since Reagan’s first term (January 1981-January 1985):

    – Billy Gardner, fired 62 games into the 1985 season
    – Ray Miller, fired with 23 games remaining in the 1986 season

    Not looking forward to a return to those days.

  2. Submitted by Paul Brandon on 09/29/2014 - 07:02 pm.

    How about firing

    the guy who hired all the players who didn’t produce?

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