Former catcher Redmond tabbed as next Marlins manager
(MCT) — Former Marlin and Fox Sports Florida analyst Preston Wilson recently joked during a radio interview that the back of Mike Redmond’s first baseball card said he would make a good manager someday.
The Marlins have come to that conclusion.
Thursday, they announced the hiring of Redmond as their next manager. He will be formally introduced Friday during a 1:30 p.m. press conference at Marlins Park.
Late Wednesday, Redmond, 41, and his representatives from CAA Sports agreed to a three-year contract. A Marlins catcher from 1998 to 2004, Redmond becomes the 13th manager in franchise history and sixth in four years.
Ozzie Guillen, the man Redmond is replacing, was among those to offer well wishes via Twitter. Guillen wrote: “congrats mike redmond for u new job. good luck buddy. u have great guys going to play for you.”
The Marlins last month fired Guillen after a 69-93 record and last-place finish in the National League East. Guillen has three years and $7.5 million remaining on his contract.
In addition to the poor record, Guillen had a major communication breakdown with the front office, namely Larry Beinfest, the Marlins’ president of baseball operations.
“Red can get along with anybody,” said former Marlins teammate and Fox Sports Florida analyst Cliff Floyd. “The one thing he also brings is he’s a good teacher. He’s a student of the game. He’s been setting himself up for this opportunity since he was playing, even back with me.”
The Seattle-born Redmond, who resides in Spokane, Wash., with his wife, Michele and two sons, didn’t need much time to make it back to the majors. He retired after the 2010 season and spent the next two years managing in the Blue Jays’ organization, including last season in the Florida State League.
Former Marlins hitting coach John Mallee was a special advisor in the Blue Jays’ player development department and worked closely with Redmond.
“Red is a players’ manager who will be able to get the best out of his players’ ability,” said Mallee, hired this offseason to be the Houston Astros’ hitting coach. “He has the unique ability to hold the players accountable for doing their jobs and the knowledge and experience to show them how.
“He is a winner with just enough personality to lead the charge without distracting from the process.”
In 2011, Redmond led the Lansing Lugnuts to a 77-60 record and a spot in the Midwest League finals. Last season the Dunedin Blue Jays went 78-55 under Redmond. They lost in the first round of the Florida State League playoffs to eventual champion Lakeland.
After his interview with Marlins officials last week in New York, Redmond said: “Going in there was a definite comfort factor for me knowing all the guys and knowing the organization, and knowing their philosophy. We told a lot of stories about the 2003 World Series championship team...I was going in to talk to guys that knew me and my personality, and what I brought to the table as a player. They just had to hear what I could bring to the table now as a manager.”
The first seven seasons of Redmond’s 13-year major league career came with the Marlins. He also spent time with the Twins (2005-09) before concluding his playing career with the Indians in 2010.
“When I retired, an opportunity came up with the Blue Jays and I took a long, hard look at it obviously knowing I had just gotten released,” Redmond said. “I don’t think any of us anticipated it would happen that fast.”
The Marlins also are expected to name Reid Cornelius, their bullpen coach the past three seasons, as their pitching coaching and announce the return of infield instructor Perry Hill. Third base coach Joe Espada was retained from last year’s staff as well. The Marlins still need a hitting coach and bench coach.