Marlins’ Rodriguez resigns, another managerial search underway
For the second time in less than a year the Florida Marlins will have to hire a new manager. On Sunday Edwin Rodriguez announced that he had resign from his post as the skipper of the last-placed Marlins. Rodriguez will leave after only 163 games with a record of 78-85. The Marlins said that bench coach Brandon Hyde will manage the Marlins in the meantime.
The Marlins brought in Edwin Rodriguez as the interim manager on June 23, 2010 after then-manager Fredi Gonzalez was fired. Rodriguez, who had been in the organization since 2003, had managerial experience with the Low Class-A Greensboro Grasshoppers and the Gulf Coast league Marlins. Throughout the rest of the 2010 campaign rumors swirled that the Marlins would bring in a big-named manager to replace Rodriguez. Two prominent names on the rumor mill were former Mets manager and friend of Marlins owner Jeffry Loria, Bobby Valentine, and current White Sox skipper Ozzie Guillen. Talks with Valentine got ugly and he publically bashed the Marlins brass with how they handled negotiations on ESPN. As for Guillen, it was rumored that the Marlins offered first baseman-turned-outfielder Logan Morrison to White Sox general manager Kenny Williams for Guillen’s services. Guillen was previously with the Marlins as the third base coach during their 2003 World Series run.
After numerous swing and misses during the final few months of the 2010 season and during the off-season, the Marlins announced that they had re-signed Edwin Rodriguez to a one-year deal, keeping him as the manager. The Marlins 2011 season looked promising as the Marlins were leading the wild card for most of the first two months of play. The Marlins sat at 29-19 in late May. Once June came the wheels fell completely off. Coming into Sunday’s game the Marlins had only won one game in June and were 1-17 this month. An injury to the Marlins ace Josh Johnson and cornerstone player Hanley Ramirez batting around .200 didn’t help Rodriguez’s cause. Rumors started to fly that the front office of the Marlins were looking for a change. On June 8 the Marlins fired hitting coach John Mallee and replaced him with former big league Eduardo Perez, son of Marlins advisor Tony Perez.
Now that Rodriguez has resigned, the Marlins will be on the search again. Familiar names such as Ozzie Guillen and Bobby Valentine will come up again, as will former Marlins third base coach Bo Porter. Porter was offered the Marlins managerial job in the off-season but it was declined. Another wildcard name that has quickly come up is 80-year-old Jack McKeon. McKeon, who is an advisor to the owner, lead the Marlins to a World Series victory in 2003. Trader Jack, as many call him, was the Marlins manager from 2003-2005 and has stayed in the organization in his current role since then. If McKeon does return it will be only for the remainder of the season, as Loria and company would do everything they can to make a huge splash in the off-season. The Marlins came out empty handed the first time around but this time they have better bait which includes an expanding payroll and a new stadium that opens in 2012. Loria hopes that this time he won’t strike out, but hit a home run from Sun Life Stadium to his future home in the Little Havana section of downtown Miami.