Detroit Tigers to hire Ron Gardenhire as next manager

Ross Houston
October 20, 2017

The Detroit Tigers intend to hire Ron Gardenhire as their next manager, pending the completion of a contract, according to Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic.

The Tigers' 2017 season was marked by the release of Brad Ausmus after one of the worst win-loss records in team history, slumping attendance and a talent dump. He has since interviewed with the Boston Red Sox, who also have a vacancy.

The sense on first glance is a mixed reaction to the move, specifically on the point of analytics.

Gardenhire won't have an easy task ahead of him if he's to lead the Tigers to the postseason anytime soon.

He was named AL Manager of the Year in 2010 and guided the Twins to six American League Central Division titles from 2002 to '10, including an ALCS appearance in 2002.

Two playoff bench coaches, Dave Martinez with the Cubs and Alex Cora with the Astros, were likewise on Detroit's interview list.

For all the misery his Twins teams brought the Tigers, Gardenhire's relationship with Detroit's front office and opposing skippers was extraordinary.

Gardenhire rejoined the Twins as a special assistant to general manager Terry Ryan in 2016 before joining the Diamondbacks last season.

Ausmus' predecessor, Jim Leyland, said publicly and repeatedly that the manager he most respected was Gardenhire. Gardenhire certainly has plenty of that. As of Tuesday, the team had not yet interviewed Lloyd McClendon, though he was believed to have a contingent of support among players within the Tigers clubhouse.

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