With the largest payroll in all of American sports, the Los Angeles Dodgers had no shortage of talent and large personalities throughout the roster.

Off-the-field distractions began early in 2014 as Yasiel Puig arrived late for the Dodgers’ home opener and was subsequently benched. While Puig appeared to become less of a headache as the season wore on, there were egos and a crowded outfield to manage.

Since becoming manager of the Dodgers, Don Mattingly has been regarded as one who is able to connect with players and help diffuse situations. On Tuesday, Washington Nationals rookie manager Matt Williams was named NL Manager of the Year.

Mattingly appeared on 10 of the 30 ballots — receiving nine second-place votes and one third-place vote. Pittsburgh Pirates manager finished in second place and Bruce Bochy of the World Series-champion San Francisco Giants came in third. Mattingly finished second in the voting to Hurdle in 2013.

Following the announcement, ESPN contributor Molly Knight revealed a current Dodger believes Mattingly would win the award had it been known the troubles he dealt with:

While Knight only referenced one player’s opinion, she acknowledged others share a similar sentiment:

When Matt Kemp yelled at Puig in the dugout during a road game in Colorado, Mattingly implied multiple incidents had transpired behind closed doors; he would later say dealing with the team in 2014 was a tedious task.

The aforementioned outfield logjam was seemingly an issue that never quite subsided last season. It ended with Andre Ethier accepting a role of the bench, which a source credited Mattingly for selling the outfielder on.

Despite the Dodgers falling short in the postseason for a second consecutive year and Andrew Friedman’s former manager, Joe Maddon, suddenly departing from the Tampa Bay Rays, Friedman continued to provide unwavering support for Mattingly’s return in 2015.

If recent reports are correct, the outfield may not be as much of an issue for Mattingly next season as the Dodgers are said to be shopping Carl Crawford, Ethier and Kemp.

About The Author

Matt is a journalist from Whittier, California. A Cal State Long Beach graduate, Matthew occasionally contributes to Lakers Nation, and previously served as the lead editor and digital strategist at Dodgers Nation, and the co-editor and lead writer at Reign of Troy, where he covered USC Football. You can follow Matt on Twitter @mmoreno1015

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