Dodgers manager Don Mattingly stuck up for himself yesterday afternoon as he said he wasn’t willing to be a “lame duck” manager in 2014 after his option vested when the Dodgers beat the Braves in the NLDS.
Mattingly wants a multi-year deal while general manager Ned Colletti said the matter would be taken care of shortly and that he had confidence in Mattingly’s ability to manage. However, the first shoe dropped this morning as the Dodgers are shaking up their coaching staff according to Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com:
Sources: #dodgers fire bench coach trey hillman and advance scout wade taylor. The 2 are close to mattingly.
— Jon Heyman (@JonHeymanCBS) October 22, 2013
Hillman has been the Dodgers bench coach since 2010 and was chosen exclusively by Mattingly at the time. He spent three years as manager of the Royals, compiling a record of 152-207.
At the press conference yesterday, Mattingly said he wanted the entire staff back, but Colletti fell short of saying that would happen.
Meanwhile, Bill Shaikin of the LA Times is reporting that Colletti made the decision and that Mattingly wasn’t involved in the firing, which signals the growing chances of Mattingly not returning in 2014.
Taylor joins trainer Sue Falsone as other Dodger casualties to start the offseason, though Falsone left on her own to pursue other opportunities. It’s clear that the Guggenheim Group, which just finished its first full year of ownership, wants to get their own people in place and Mattingly’s firing could be the next step.
After the news broke, Hillman spoke to the media about his firing via Heyman:
It was three great years in a wonderful organization, a real blessing to be with a franchise like this. Ned was very professional. He wasn’t that fired up about giving the news. When you feel there’s some remorse, it makes it a little bit easier to take. I think the world of Donnie. He’s got a future as a tremendous future, either here or somewhere else.
In case you missed it, here’s the Dodgers pool celebration, PLUS Yasiel Puig’s celebration dance off!