Mackanin Hired By Yankees
RaysDigest.comJan 8, 2008
Pete Mackanin, the Cincinnati Reds’ interim manager for the final months of 2007, accepted a job as a scout with the New York Yankees on Monday afternoon. Mackanin enjoyed success after replacing Jerry Narron, and hoped to remain as the Reds’ full-time manager. The Cincinnati organization, however, instead opted to employ a proven manager with more experience, signing veteran skipper Dusty Baker.
Pete Mackanin, the Cincinnati Reds
’ interim manager for the final months of 2007, accepted a job as a scout with the New York Yankees
on Monday afternoon. Mackanin, who replaced Jerry Narron after he was fired on July 1, hoped to remain as the Reds’ full-time manager. The Cincinnati organization, however, instead opted to employ a proven manager with more experience, signing veteran skipper Dusty Baker in early-October. Mackanin, disappointed by the Reds’ decision, was offered a position to remain on in Cincinnati, but refused, saying that it was in his best interest to move on.
After playing for five different teams in a nine-year major league career, Mackanin has spent the last two decades coaching in the minor leagues. Following a two-year stint managing the Nashville Sounds, he was hired as the bench coach for the Pittsburgh Pirates
prior to spring training in 2003. Two years later, when Pittsburgh fired Lloyd McClendon, he earned his first shot to manage at baseball’s highest level, guiding the Pirates to a 12-14 record.
His next move brought him to Cincinnati, originally serving as an advanced scout, similar to the position he will fulfill in New York. But in the aftermath of the Cincinnati’s dismal first-half—51 losses, the highest total in all of Major League Baseball—he helped right the ship, keeping the Reds’ nucleus motivated as the franchise finished two games over .500 (41-39) under Mackanin’s leadership.
Due to the Reds’ second-half success, Mackanin was serious considered to stay, according to Cincinnati general manager Wayne Krivsky, who remains Mackanin’s close friend. But by adding Baker—a move met with mixed reactions in baseball circles, due to Baker’s poor track record of handling young pitchers, evidenced by his experience with Mark Prior
and Kerry Wood
during his time with Chicago—though, the Reds gain a marketable leader in the dugout popular with players. While many have questioned the signing, citing the need for a conservative manger who will treat the arms of top pitching prospects Homer Bailey
, Johnny Cueto
and Travis Woods delicately, he also handles veterans well, instantly commanding respect in the clubhouse. In addition, the hire was strongly endorsed by fan favorite outfielder Ken Griffey
In Mackanin, 56, though, New York, who has been courting him since the winter meetings in Nashville, adds another excellent talent evaluator to its baseball operations department.
“We had a nice discussion,” Mackanin said Monday of the Yankees’ interest. "Fortunately they were looking for somebody, and I fit the bill."
Before he retires, however, he wants to return to the dugout some day. Whether or not his wish is ever fulfilled, of course, is still up in the air.