It all began with a seemingly infinite number of candidates. Over the past week, the droves have been whittled down to 24, the Sweet 16, the Elite 8, and now the Final 4.
The next manager of the Toronto Blue Jays will either be Brian Butterfield, Sandy Alomar Jr., DeMarlo Hale, or John Farrell.
I’ll be honest, I was a little perturbed when we didn’t see Brian Butterfield listed as one of the finalists yesterday to take over as the Blue Jays skipper. Butterfield was arguably the top candidate from the start, so it was somewhat shocking when he wasn’t mentioned on the short list.
Luckily, that has been rectified and the Blue Jays front office now only has to work from a list of four serious contenders.
All we can really do is speculate at this point as to who will win the job, but my Spidey Sense tells me it will be one of the three coaches from outside the organization.
What’s the reasoning, you ask? While Brian Butterfield seems like the logical choice and knows both the players and organization inside and out, maybe it’s a wise choice to bring some new blood into the situation.
I think Bob McCown alluded to this a few weeks ago on PrimeTime Sports, but the issue with promoting internal candidates is even though that coach has been promoted to manager, in the eyes of the players they may still be viewed as just a coach.
I’m not saying the players wouldn’t respect Brian Butterfield, as I’m sure they think the world of him. But I relate this situation to one in the everyday workplace.
If you work with a guy or girl for 10 years as an equal, and then suddenly they’re promoted and become your boss … are you going to take them 100 percent seriously? Obviously, seeing that person in a different light is going to take some getting used to.
On that same token, these are professional baseball players who should be willing to cooperate with their superior, no matter if they have been in the clubhouse for the last 10 years or whether they’ve only been around for the last 10 minutes.
Judging by Alex Anthopoulos’ style, I’m wouldn’t be surprised to see him go outside the Blue Jays organization to name a manager. Maybe somebody with a fresh set of eyes on this group of players will be able to harness something that previous managers haven’t been able to before.
After all, if this team is going to compete with the beasts of the American League East, who better to select than one of the minds who helped fuel the machine of one of those beasts.