View Full Version : Article on Louisville manager Rick Sweet

02-12-2009, 03:51 PM
Just like his Bats players, Sweet wants shot at Show
Louisville boss could be an asset in majors

February 11, 2009

Rick Sweet is perfectly happy as the manager of the Louisville Bats.

But everyone wants to be in the big leagues.

Coming off the best season in franchise history and his second Manager of the Year award in a Triple-A league, Sweet is no doubt a hot commodity for a job in the majors. He wants that chance, and he doesn't care who knows it. After all, players need ambitious role models.

"I think it's important that my players know I have that goal," he said yesterday at the Bats' pre-spring news conference. "The last thing you want from me is somebody that's just stagnant, that's content with where they're at. I'm looking to better myself all the time."

Sweet was the Seattle Mariners' bullpen coach in 1984 and the Houston Astros' first-base coach in 1996. He's spent most of his pro coaching career as a minor league manager, including being named Pacific Coast League Manager of the Year with Tucson in 1994. That earned him the No. 3 ranking on Baseball America's now-defunct list of managerial prospects in the minors.

Last year Sweet was named the International League's best skipper, leading the Bats to an 88-56 mark -- a franchise record for wins and tied for the best in the IL -- before they lost in the first round of the playoffs to Durham.

His contract doesn't allow him to look for other jobs, but that doesn't mean he's not on the big league radar.

"If I were a major league general manager, he would certainly be on my list," said Terry Reynolds, director of player development for the Cincinnati Reds, the Bats' parent team.

Reynolds said he most appreciates Sweet's interaction with players and staff. His 20 minor league seasons as manager don't hurt, either.

"That experience is priceless," Reynolds said.

Despite his aspirations to move up, this will be Sweet's fifth season in Louisville, his longest stint anywhere as a pro player or coach. The Washington native listed Rocky's Italian Grill in Jeffersonville as one of his favorite restaurants and said he's becoming attached to the area.

"Who knows?" he said. "I may end up living here one day."

-- Rick Newkirk


02-12-2009, 03:59 PM
Wow you beat me to it OBM, I was just coming to post it. Anyway I was thinking he might be Dusty's replacement after the season. It would be interesting to keep an eye on him this season and to get together some info on his style and philosophies. Seems like when he has something to work with he does well. Donnie Scott I liked too bad he got canned.

02-12-2009, 04:35 PM
I can see the Dave Miley pt II threads/posts already...

02-12-2009, 05:59 PM
I can see the Dave Miley pt II threads/posts already...

I agree, I can see them too.. But would it really be the same?

The younger guys such as Bruce, votto, cueto, etc might give him a better chance than the griffey, Dunn, and kearns did miley.

02-12-2009, 07:48 PM
I love Rick Sweet as a Manager. Always have. I think he's been one of the best in the game the last 7 years. He'll succeed wherever he goes. Would love to see Baker run himself out of town and have him be replaced by Sweet.

02-13-2009, 09:17 AM
I'm not sure I'd assume Baker will be gone after this season. That's the wish of most of RZ, but I don't believe that's what Castellini's feelings are.

Likewise, as BRM noted, the Dave Miley comparison's are inevitable, but many a manager has moved from the minors to the ML level with little problem. In continues to be a mystery how Miley never was able to assert himself more when with the big club because he has a tremendous record in the minors. Perhaps that's his forte, but it doesn't necessarily translate to others who aspire to moving up.

If and when the Reds need a new manager, I'd like for Sweet to have a shot.

02-13-2009, 10:40 AM
Not that it relates directly to his skills as a manager, but I've observed and spoken to Rick Sweet several times during Spring Training. He is a genuinely nice guy that took the extra step to talk to the fans (and especially kids) watching the practices.

03-17-2009, 11:28 AM