Jaffe: Dan Jennings and other managers who never played the game

From SABR member Jay Jaffe at SI.com on May 18, 2015:

That Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria fired Mike Redmond as the team’s manager wasn’t a huge surprise: Rumors have been going around since last month that Redmond was on the hot seat after Miami’s 3–11 start to the season. That he did it at the 38-game mark—the same point at which he dismissed Jeff Torborg during the 2003 season with an identical 16–22 record—might have looked downright reasonable from the owner’s twisted viewpoint. His solution, on the other hand, is much harder to understand.

At the same juncture in 2003, Loria tabbed grizzled 72-year-old Jack McKeon to pilot the team, which he did, all the way to an unlikely world championship. This time, he’s turned to somebody who has no qualifications for the job: general manager Dan Jennings. While the 54-year-old Jennings has 31 years of professional baseball experience as a scout and executive—the last 13 of which have come with the Marlins as vice president of player personnel (2002–07), assistant GM (’07–13) and GM (’13–15)—his professional playing experience consists of having been to spring training with the Yankees’ Class A Greensboro affiliate back in 1984. His previous field experience, meanwhile, is that he “briefly coached in high school in Mobile, Ala., in the 1980s,” according to the Associated Press.


Jennings won’t be the first man to lead a major league team without having ever picked up a bat or glove for a professional squad. Here’s a quick rundown of other MLB managers with no previous professional playing experience, based on a list compiled by the Tampa Bay Times back in 2008.

Read the full article here: http://www.si.com/mlb/2015/05/18/hit-and-run-miami-marlins-dan-jennings-jeffrey-loria-atlanta-braves-shelby-miller

Originally published: May 19, 2015. Last Updated: May 19, 2015.