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Jim Furtado
Founder & Publisher
Editor - Baseball Primer


Don Mattingly Newsbeat

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Marlins, manager Don Mattingly agree to four-year deal -

Don Mattingly, long eyed as the choice of owner Jeffrey Loria to revive the Marlins, has agreed to take the Miami managing job, sources confirm.

Mattingly has seemd to be a fait accompli in Miami since he and the Dodgers parted ways late last week. Loria has been targeting him as the replacement for Dan Jennings since late summer, and the sides made it happen after what was described as a very positive meeting Monday.

Mattingly, the Dodgers manager the past five years, agreed to a four-year deal, according to Dodgers author Molly Knight, who first reported the agreement. It was reported on Wednesday that there was every expectation for a deal.

Mattingly, one of two managers to win division crowns the past three years, has known Loria, a part-time New York resident for years.

Mattingly could not be reached, and the Marlins haven’t confirmed yet.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 29, 2015 at 09:38 AM | 20 comment(s)
  Beats: don mattingly, manager, marlins

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Inside Baseball: Ins and outs of Mattingly’s exit; plus more MLB notes -

As always some good tidbits from Heyman. I love this one.

As was mentioned in this space a week ago, the former outfielder/former broadcaster Gabe Kapler is beloved by the Dodgers brass as future saber star. (Kapler was put in charge of Dodgers spring nutrition for obvious reasons – he looks like a bodybuilder – and he is said to have taken a sabermetrician’s bent to even that; he was caught counting fruit in spring training.)

See, sabermetricians are counters. How can a seemingly smart fella still not get it?

Jim Furtado Posted: October 25, 2015 at 08:31 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, don mattingly, notes

Friday, October 23, 2015

Shaikin: Don Mattingly makes a decision, and Dodgers’ Andrew Friedman gets to make his choice

There are Dodger fans clamoring for Scioscia?

In Los Angeles, ownership deflected the decision on Don Mattingly to Andrew Friedman. There was talk of Mattingly staying another year, maybe more, but not for the kind of tenure that would make the manager feel he was Friedman’s guy. So Mattingly took it upon himself to make the decision. He left. He ought to be better off for it, and so too the Dodgers, without the constant backdrop of when Friedman might bring in his own guy.

Friedman should have done that a year ago, when the Dodgers’ owners hired him as president of baseball operations, but the owners still had Mattingly’s back. By the end of this season, Friedman should have known Mattingly well enough to hand him a pink slip or a contract extension, not engage him in hours of discussions about the who, what, when, and why of future decision-making at Dodger Stadium.

No one would have begrudged Friedman the chance to say, “We’re going in another direction.” Mattingly understands how the game is played. He thought he would succeed Joe Torre as manager of the New York Yankees in 2007, but the Yankees went in another direction and hired Joe Girardi. ...

This is not about the Dodgers losing Game 5 of the National League division series; an analytically inclined front office knows better than to make a decision based on one game out of 167. This is not about a sabermetric front office against an old-school manager; Mattingly bent over backward to embrace the torrent of data flowing from the front office to the clubhouse, and the considerable input from the humans in the executive suites.

“I think it’s great, honestly,” Mattingly said. “I think the information is really good. Do I agree 1,000% with everything that comes through it? Probably not. That has nothing to do with loving information.”

Those Dodgers fans clamoring for the return of a prodigal son — Scioscia or Dusty Baker — should be reminded that a manager’s job has changed these days, and not only at Dodger Stadium. Experience as a manager is an asset, not a requirement.

Today’s manager is more of a middle manager, a politician within the organization and a corporate spokesman representing the organization, a front man for the team at a time the balance of power has shifted from the dugout to the front office.



JE (Jason) Posted: October 23, 2015 at 09:56 AM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: andrew friedman, dodgers, don mattingly, manager

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Sources: Mattingly, Dodgers part ways -

No shock here.

Don Mattingly and the Dodgers will part ways, sources tell CBS Sports.

The decision is being described as mutual.

Dodgers higherups like Mattingly very much, but it was apparent there wasn’t support for the long-term. Word is Mattingly felt he was treated very well by baseball president Andrew Friedman and others, but the sides ultimately decided it was better to move on.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 22, 2015 at 09:53 AM | 46 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, don mattingly, managers

Sunday, October 18, 2015

$310M Dodgers go bust: What’s the future for these 3 big names? | New York Post

Why don’t the Dodgers just trade Mattingly to the Marlins. Win, win.

Mattingly clearly has grown annoyed about job status questions — it is not as if his resume is littered with last-place finishes. Jon Heyman of has reported that if let go by the Dodgers, Mattingly would become a frontrunner to be the Marlins’ manager as their owner Jeffrey Loria continues to adore anything that has a Yankees background.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 18, 2015 at 09:06 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, don mattingly

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Heyman Baseball Insider: Mattingly deserves to stay in LA, but will he? Plus MLB notes

JH ♡ DM.

Mattingly, it is said, has been quite cooperative on the lineup input he receives from above, and word is, it’s substantial. The club is blessed with terrific positional depth at full strength, giving them options galore, though Mattingly doesn’t always make the call. (That might explain why he answers questions about lineup decisions with “We thought it gave us the best chance to win.”

Under normal circumstances, Mattingly should easily be safe. But he also knows his job comes with no guarantees, and the one year to go on his three-year contract brings no certainties, either (if anyone’s shown they’re wiling to eat money, it’s the Dodgers).

Dodgers people haven’t said much, if anything, about his situation, and they may just keep him after weighing all these factors. But if they aren’t sure he’s their guy long-term, it’s possible they could allow him to talk to other interested teams, and there is at least one that’s interested, maybe more. ...

In the event of the Dodgers move on—and it’s hard to say how likely that is—the new regime could look close to home. First year director of player development Gabe Kapler is one who’s been speculated on by the Los Angeles press, and he makes some sense. And the new regime does love Kapler, a very smart man who has a sabremetric bent. But that’s just a guess.

Mattingly is a big boy. Even with the consistently strong regular seasons, he’d probably understand if the Dodgers made a change, at least to a degree. And at this point, he himself probably wouldn’t be shocked.

But that doesn’t mean it would be the right things to do. And it wouldn’t be.

JE (Jason) Posted: October 17, 2015 at 02:17 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, don mattingly, jon heyman, manager, managerial openings, marlins, nationals

Friday, October 16, 2015

Plaschke: Large payroll isn’t enough to get Dodgers further in postseason

Plaschke is up to his “old-fashioned” tricks, this time pretending never to have heard of Ted Williams.

For $300 million, you would also think the Dodgers would always be covering third base — there’s only four bases to watch, right? — yet in the fourth inning they inexplicably left it open after Zack Greinke walked Lucas Duda with the infield shifted to right. Daniel Murphy, who had earlier singled and jogged to second on the walk, saw the free base and sprinted to it. Moments later, Murphy scored the game-tying run on Travis d’Arnaud’s deep foul fly ball, a 2-all tie that remained until Murphy won the game with a home run into the right-field seats in the sixth.

Mattingly blamed the naked base caper on rookie Corey Seager, but, in a broader sense, the blame will be felt by new Dodgers baseball boss Andrew Friedman. This was a case of old-fashioned hustle beating the sort of new-age baseball shift that has been implemented here by the Friedman regime. It is a shift that has sometimes succeeded but still requires more work, especially on a team with a rookie shortstop.

“We should all be kind of ... communicating, ‘Get to third, get to third,’” said Mattingly after this expensive team was once again felled by 10-cent fundamentals.

Finally, for $300 million, you wouldn’t think the Dodgers players and their manager would engage in a shouting match in the middle of their most important moment.

The enduring image of Thursday’s loss will probably be Andre Ethier waving off Mattingly and screaming, “Shut up and manage!” after Mattingly had tried to calm him down after Ethier flied out with a runner on second in the third.

JE (Jason) Posted: October 16, 2015 at 09:01 AM | 56 comment(s)
  Beats: andrew friedman, bill plaschke, dodgers, don mattingly, old school, shifts

Monday, October 12, 2015

Don Mattingly: David Wright would get away with hard slide - NY Daily News

If Utley plays and gets a game-winning hit, there will be mass hysteria in New York.

Mattingly said he had been considering starting Utley, who is 6-for-18 (.333) with one home run against Harvey, while Howie Kendrick is only 1-for-6. Lefties hit 15 home runs and had a .676 OPS in 377 plate appearances this season against Harvey, who limited righthanders to three home runs and a .544 OPS in 378 plate appearances.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 12, 2015 at 07:57 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: david wright, don mattingly, mets

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Plaschke: Chase Utley’s slide was late, high and arguably dirty

The slide was late. The slide was high. The slide was questionably legal and arguably dirty.

Even if you were watching it through blue-colored glasses, you had to admit that the slide was recklessly dangerous, so much that it broke another man’s leg.

Wednesday, October 07, 2015

Bill Plaschke: It might be World Series or bust for Don Mattingly - LA Times

Is this a repeat from last season?

Mattingly has led the Dodgers to three consecutive NL West championships, but the guess here is that if he can’t lead this team to a World Series his locker will be empty by Halloween.

Somebody is going to have to take the fall if baseball’s richest team still can’t find the Fall Classic after 27 years of classic falls, and Mattingly is the one wearing the target.

Management demoted Ned Colletti, traded Matt Kemp, let Hanley Ramirez walk. The Dodgers have rid themselves of every perceived problem from the previous two seasons, and now, if they fail again to survive two rounds of the tournament, it would figure to be Mattingly’s turn.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 07, 2015 at 12:31 PM | 12 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, don mattingly, managers

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Schoenfield: Trying to figure out Don Mattingly and the Dodgers

I agree with Schoenfield: Absent a World Series ring, Mattingly is going, going, gone.

That brings us to the latest maneuverings of manager Don Mattingly. After Mattingly spent a few weeks screwing around with Yasiel Puig by occasionally sitting him to get Carl Crawford some at-bats, the manager has now benched rookie center fielder Joc Pederson, with Enrique Hernandez—who had been filling in at second due to the injury to Howie Kendrick—moving to center so Chase Utley can play second. The Dodgers, who emphasized better defense with their offseason acquisitions (although that hasn’t worked out as planned, since the Dodgers are 23rd in the majors in defensive runs saved), arguably weakened their defense at two positions, right when they’re playing a crucial stretch of baseball. (I don’t say that with certainty; Pederson is probably average-ish defensively and Hernandez may be as well, despite limited experience at the position. Utley’s diminished range is almost certainly a drop from Hernandez at second, however.)

It’s easy to see why Mattingly benched Pederson. The rookie hit .169 in July. He’s hitting .122 in August. Pederson, however, has drawn 20 walks in August and has a .413 OBP. He told Mark Saxon that he understands the demotion. But ... well, I’ll turn it over to Joe Sheehan, who wrote yesterday:

“What makes Mattingly’s decision all the more incomprehensible is his continued commitment to Jimmy Rollins at the top of the lineup. Rollins has been a replacement-level player this season, batting .223/.275/.361 with below-average defense at shortstop and an abysmal 9/7 [ratio of stolen bases to caught stealing]. It’s Rollins who replaced Pederson atop the Dodgers lineup, leading off in 21 of the last 22 games. In that time, he’s batting .269/.299/.398—a performance inferior to Pederson’s in that time. A leadoff hitter with a .299 OBP is actively hurting your offense. It’s 2015, and there’s an MLB manager unable to see past batting average to build his lineup.”

That’s what’s most stunning to me: The Dodgers, with like 26 general managers in the front office, are watching Mattingly bat his worst hitter leadoff. How does that make sense? As he did with Puig, Mattingly seems to get easily frustrated with young players, and can’t look past a small sample size to see long-term production trends. The roots of Pederson’s recent struggles with his batting average and his current benching go back in some fashion to spring training, when the Dodgers were concerned about his violent, all-or-nothing approach at the plate.

Of course, keep in mind that Mattingly’s style as a hitter was basically the exact opposite of Pederson’s. Mattingly rarely walked and rarely struck out. Pederson waits and waits and waits for his pitch and tries to jack it out, but he pays the price with a high strikeout rate. Mattingly’s swing was smooth and effortless. Note: Even with his recent struggles, Pederson has a .357 on-base percentage on the season. Mattingly’s career OBP? .358.

JE (Jason) Posted: August 27, 2015 at 12:47 AM | 16 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, don mattingly, on-base percentage

Monday, June 29, 2015

Mattingly challenges Puig to adjust to pitchers

I don’t know what Mattingly is on about.  Puig had a 159 OPS+ in year 1, 143 last year, 141 so far this year.  His K-rate has improved every year (16.5% in this year’s small sample), the walk rate is high.  OK, he probably won’t see that first-year HR rate again but in the article, Mattingly says he’s not a HR hitter anyway.  Puig’s 1200 PA into his career and if pitchers haven’t found the solution yet ...

Walt Davis Posted: June 29, 2015 at 07:53 AM | 16 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, don mattingly, yasiel puig

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Dodger Dogged: How Don Mattingly Has Shaken Off the Critics and Embraced the Challenge of Managing in L.A. «

Jonah Keri looks at Don Mattingly in Los Angeles.

Jim Furtado Posted: June 10, 2015 at 11:30 AM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: dodgers, don mattingly



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