Mar 16, 2013; Greensboro, NC, USA; Former Cincinnati Reds and Hall of Fame player Barry Larkin watches his son, Miami (Fl) Hurricanes guard Shane Larkin (0) play against North Carolina State Wolfpack. The Hurricanes defeated the Wolfpack 81-71 during the semifinals of the ACC tournament at Greensboro Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports
When Joe Maddon abruptly dumped the Tampa Bay Rays last month, potential managerial candidates lined up around the proverbial block to get a shot at the Tampa gig. On Friday, the team announced their three finalists for the position, and former Cincinnati Reds Barry Larkin and Dave Martinez both missed the cut.
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As great as Larkin was in his career for the Reds, he really has no business being interviewed for Major League managerial jobs at this point in his career. His only high-level coaching experience came during a stint as manager of the Brazilian team in the 2013 World Baseball Classic. According to David Clark at Cincinnati.com, Larkin would someday like to manage a team “with more talent.” If he really has designs on a managerial career in the Majors, Larkin should take the path that Ryne Sandberg did, managing in the minors or coaching in some capacity at the Big-League level in order to earn his chops.
Martinez, on the other hand, has plenty of experience coaching in the Majors, having served as Maddon’s bench coach since 2008, and he was a favorite to earn the job. By not selecting him as a finalist, the Rays seem to be ready to move on from the managerial style that took them so far and put Maddon in the upper echelon of managers. That decision also almost certainly will mean that Martinez moves on next season, so it will be interesting to see where he ends up. Maybe a reunion with Maddon, now manager of the Chicago Cubs, is in the cards.