We knew at some point the Dodgers were going to give manager Don Mattingly an extension, it was just a matter of when and for how long. Mattingly had been very vocal after the season about not wanting to manage as a lame duck under a one-year contract. His option year on his contract had automatically extended once the Dodgers beat the Braves in the NL division series.
Ken Rosenthal is reporting this afternoon that the Dodgers are nearing a contract extension with Mattingly. Donnie Baseball had expressed his displeasure at a press conference while sitting opposite of GM Ned Colletti after the Dodger brass decided to initially decline an extension and instead offered to just pick up his option year.
Mattingly wasn’t having any of that, and if you remember had told the Dodgers basically in so many words, sick it where the sun don’t shine. Ok, well he didn’t say that exactly, just that if they don’t know by now after three seasons, then what’s the point? I think Donnie kind of had a point there.
Los Angeles Dodgers manager Don Mattingly (8) hands the ball to former manager Tommy Lasorda before throwing the first pitch before the Dodgers play against the St. Louis Cardinals in game four of the National League Championship Series baseball game at Dodger Stadium.- Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports
Despite initially being a huge critic of Mattingly, my stance on him has softened after the recent season. He’s stuck around this long, and the crippling injuries were much more detrimental than his horrible addiction to bunting and horrendous bullpen management. We’ve discussed about his mentorship to younger players, and his knowledge of hitting as his strengths. This includes his ability to keep together a solid clubhouse.
Mattingy isn’t perfect but he seems to have grown into the job, and that’s basically all we can ask for out of him. Mattingly had no managerial experience before he was hired as manager save for a half season in the Arizona Fall league. Mattingly was a hitting coach for the Dodgers and Yankees before being promoted to skipper.
The spotlight seemed to shine even brighter on Mattingly after he made some very questionable moves during the 2013 postseason.
Mattingly is entering his fourth season as Dodger’s manager, and has a managerial record of 260-225, and led the Dodgers to a NL West division crown in 2013. He also led the Dodgers to their tenth NLCS appearance since 1969.
Whether you love him or hate him, Donnie Baseball will be here to stay for a while.