Arizona Diamondbacks have announced the eight candidate shortlist for their new manager and just one has previous experience at Major League managerial level.
The Diamondbacks are looking for a fresh start and new ideas after sacking Kirk Gibson on September 26 after suffering a disastrous 2014 campaign. Arizona struggled with injuries and abject performances throughout the season and ended the year bottom of the National League West division bottom with the worst record (64-98) in the entire MLB.
Wildcard playoff update
The shortlist, which was announced via the Diamondbacks Twitter account, includes Jim Tracy, Sandy Alomar Jr, Jay Bell, Andy Green, Phil Nevin and Turner Wood, Joe McEwing and Don Watamatsu.
58-year-old Tracy is the only member of the shortlist to have previous MLB managerial experience, having spent 11 of the past 13 seasons leading the Los Angeles Dodgers, Pittsburgh Pirates and Colorado Rockies respectively.
Tracy was named NL manager of the year by the Baseball Writers’ Association of America in 2009 and has been out of work since he stepped down as Rockies manager at the end of the 2012 season.
The seven other options have never managed at Major League level.
Sandy Alomar Jr was Cleveland Indians bench coach in 2013 and acted briefly as interim manager at the back end of the 2012 season. Alomar, 48, who was a six-time All-Star as a player and won AL rookie of the year in 1990, is currently out of work and looking to make the step up into management.
Jay Bell, 48, is Cincinnati Reds’ bench coach after accepting the position in November 2013. Bell, who is also a member of the advisory board of the Baseball Assistance Team, played for the Diamondbacks between 1998 and 2002, winning the World Series in 2001. The shortstop is an icon at the D-backs after he scored the World Series-winning run in Game 7 off a Luis Gonzalez bloop-single.
Green, who briefly played as a backup infielder for the D-backs between 2002 and 2004, led Missoula Osprey to the Pioneer League Championship in 2012. The 37-year-old was named Southern League’s Manager of the Year in 2013 and 2014 after taking Mobile BayBears to consecutive division titles.
Nevin, 43, has been working his way up through the minor leagues as a manger and is billed as a potential major league star. The former versatile outfielder took charge of the D-backs Class AAA affiliate club, Reno Aces, in 2014 and has already been interviewed for the vacant Houston Astros manager post.
Ward enjoyed two years in Arizona as a player and was appointed assistant hitting coach at the start of the 2013 season. The 49-year-old also holds minor-league managerial experience, having taken charge of State College Spikes and Mobile BayBears.
The Diamonds have also been given permission to interview Joe McEwing, third base coach at Chicago White Sox, and Kansas City Royals bench coach Don Wakamatsu by their respective clubs.