The Oakland Athletics have fired manager Ken Macha after the team was swept out of the playoffs by eventual ALCS champ Detroit.
Macha leaves Oakland after four years as the team’s skipper and having compiled a 368-280 record. He took the A’s to the playoffs twice, but couldn’t get them to the World Series.
GM Billy Beane pointed to a “disconnect” as the reason behind Macha’s firing — whatever that means.
“Not to fault either side, but I felt a disconnect on a lot of levels,” general manager Billy Beane said. “Once again, it’s not to point the finger at Ken or anything like that. But that disconnect was there and it was something we needed to address as soon as possible.”
Regardless of what Beane says, a winning team fires its manager for one reason and one reason only: it thinks it can get somebody better. That’s why the Tigers fired Alan Trammell. It wasn’t because Trammell was doing something wrong. It was because Jim Leyland was available.
In this case, there are several guys out there who could be considered desirable manager candidates. Lou Pineilla is technically still available, but rumor has it he is on the verge of signing with the Cubs. That leaves Buck Showalter, Frank Robinson, Moises Alou, Bob Brenly, Joe Girardi and Jim Fregosi as possible replacements for Macha.
Fregosi would be a good fit in Oakland. His laid back demeanor would help him manage Milton Bradley’s hot temper. Girardi would also be a good candidate. He is probably baseball’s smartest young manager. He’d make an intesting fit with Beane, himself a(n aging) boy wonder.