The Arizona Diamondbacks announced on Monday that manager Chip Hale has been fired. No replacement has not been named and there isn’t even a list of potential candidates yet.
The next manager will be hired by the new general manager, who has also not been identified, but that doesn’t mean the speculation has to wait does it?
If the Diamondbacks want to promote someone from within the organization, they have a few options, but there is one in particular that stands out, Reno Aces manager, Phil Nevin.
Nevin doesn’t have the major league experience, but what he does have is an intimate knowledge of the core players that make up the current Diamondbacks.
Nevin was hired in 2014 to manage the triple-A minor league affiliate of the Diamondbacks. In his first year with the organization, he led the Aces to a Pacific Coast League best 81-63. He’s been a candidate for the Houston Astros and Diamondbacks, but despite having strong interviews, the jobs eluded him.
He’s remained with the Diamondbacks managing the Aces since then.
The current core of the Diamondbacks on field product is a solid one despite the disappointing 2016 season. This core of young players was groomed into major leaguers by Nevin in Reno.
He has had success with these players in the past and he’s helped them become good ballplayers.
Simply put, Nevin knows the players.
One of the biggest issues that plagued previous manager, Chip Hale, was using the wrong players in the wrong situations. It just didn’t seem like Hale knew how to maximize his player’s strengths and minimize their weaknesses. Everyday saw a different batting order, a different defensive makeup, inconsistent pitching changes and questionable substitutions at questionable times.
It’s hard to consistently win games when players aren’t given roles to settle into. Players having to do something different everyday is just the team getting in its own way.
This is where the experience Nevin has with the team is valuable. He’s already done this with the young core. As I previously said, he knows them. Grooming a player into a major leaguer requires this.
Nevin has had interviews with Arizona about this position before and he’s sure to be on the potential list. It’ll likely be a quite of bit of time before the manager position is filled, but until then, this is just a quick glimpse into one of the managerial candidates.