Obsessive New Manager Watch: Sandy Alomar, Jr. is Today’s Interview

Cleveland Indians bench coach Sandy Alomar, Jr. will interview with the Chicago Cubs today, and then, like the candidates before him, will meet with the media thereafter. Alomar is the Cubs’ fourth interviewee – Pete Mackanin, Dale Sveum, and Mike Maddux before him – and the third who is coming fresh off of an interview with the Boston Red Sox (Mackanin, Sveum).

While his coaching experience is limited – Alomar, 45, has been a coach since 2008 – Alomar was a catcher in the bigs for some 20 seasons. With that comes a great deal of “managing” type experience. Indeed, Alomar was a finalist for the Toronto Blue Jays’ managerial opening in 2010 before the team selected John Farrell.

Alomar, a Chicago resident, is considered a natural leader and coach. He’s a guy who will have his shot managing a team, assuming he continues to want it, at some point in the future. Additionally, the fact that he is fluent in both English and Spanish is not a superficial credit – in today’s game, that skill is increasingly valuable.

Alomar says he’s ready for the grueling interview the Cubs are going to throw at him.

“After spending the day interviewing in Boston, I know those guys leave no stone unturned,” Alomar said. “I know that Theo is a guy who has a lot of new ideas, so I assume this process will be the same way. I’m really looking forward to meeting with the Cubs.”

On his candidacy, Alomar says his experience is both a strength and a weakness.

“I have learned a tremendous amount of baseball from [my managers and coaches] and my father has been very influential in my career in the coaching department. I feel like I can help an organization,” Alomar said. “The only weakness that I have, to be honest with you right now, is that I haven’t managed anywhere in the past. That’s the main concern for everybody. But I’ve managed myself, and I’ve managed people throughout my career with leadership, and I feel like I could do it.”

Alomar also says he can readjust to the National League.

“I’ve been removed from the National League for three years now,” Alomar said, “so I don’t know all about their players, but I can learn quickly.”

On the subject of following a home run interview – at least the media part – by Mike Maddux, Alomar was complimentary.

“Mike’s a great guy and a great coach,” Alomar said. “I can be funny, too, but I don’t think I’m going to try to be as funny as Mike was.”

Brett Taylor is the editor and lead writer at Bleacher Nation, and can also be found as Bleacher Nation on Twitter and on Facebook.

49 responses to “Obsessive New Manager Watch: Sandy Alomar, Jr. is Today’s Interview”

  1. johnbres2


    Here is his press conf with the Red Sox.  I say again, get Maddux!

  2. die hard

    If him then why not Sandberg?

    1. pfk

      For one thing, Sandberg has never coached in MLB, Alomar, jr. has. And Theo said they had to have MLB experience.

    2. MontelleW

      plain and simple – he’s a bench coach in the bigs – he has ML experience as a coach. Sandberg has NONE. Let it go already.

  3. bhannon

    can we let go of sandberg…theres no way he’ll be joining the cubs staff in any capacity-the coach would be looking over his shoulder at the first sign of trouble

    1. MichiganGoat

      Sadly there will still be fans clamoring for him after every losing streak, he may one day turn into Dick Tribow in legend on Cub message boards

  4. Mike F

    I don’t think they will choose him. He’s light year’s ahead of PM though. I can see him as a dark horse because he’s got some charisma, leadership and presence, but he’s raised the some reflags with some of philosophies that are unlikely to make him the pick in this situation. The one thing we don’t know is how they will react to his honesty and he’s one of those guys, who appears blatantly honest and someone people would want to win for. That said, there could be some accountability issues and I don’t think his philosophy of managing to the situation SOP vs intellect will get him this job. But he is a very appealing guy in terms of leadership. Wrong guy for this situation though. This job is probably Maddux or Sveum’s to lose or say no to.

  5. BD

    My question- aren’t some of the best managers former catchers? How many good managers are out there that were pitchers?

    1. Dave H

      Tom Lasorda, Roger Craig, Bud Black and even our own Larry Rothschild progressed to the manager’s chairs.

      1. BD

        I didn’t mean it to sound like a pitcher can’t be a manager. Just that there have been quite a few catchers who turned into pretty good managers (just off the top of my head, guys like Connie Mack, Jim Leyland, Scioscia, and Joe Maddon).

        1. Dave H

          Oh yeah understood.  I think it becomes the make up of the person rather than the position that they played.  Catchers would seem to have the upper hand in becoming a manager because they are in the game a lot differently than other position players.

  6. Dave H

    The Sandberg thing is tough.  Honestly, no one is going to give him a real chance.  The best chance he has is to become a bench coach then progress up to the big chair.  Anywhere he goes, that manager will be looking over his shoulder. Yes, the Cubs new manager will not consider him for a bench coach for that main reason.  But someone like Tito could actually give ryno a chance here in Chicago.  I always thought Lou should have given him the shot when he finished AA.

  7. Edwin

    Didn’t Sandy catch Kerry Wood’s 20K game?

    1. Luke

      That was Sandy Martinez, who was a darn good back up catcher.


      1. die hard

        Is Sandy Martinez available?

        1. Edwin

          Does Sandy Martinez know some good jokes?

  8. clark addison

    MIke Maddux is still my choice.

  9. fearbobafett

    I think no matter what, fans are going to be screaming for Sandberg if he has any part of this staff. Sure there will be those that think he should learn from another skipper at the big level and not scream his name, but around here that is not going to happen.
    He is the Cubs version of the back-up quarterback when you don’t have a Manning starting.

  10. Mike F

    I think that’s correct, no matter who the choice, he’s going to have the Sandberg thing over his head. And point of fact, a lot of teams have had the opportunity so there must be something that holds him back.

    I still come back to PM, he’s out of place in this group. I understand the other 3 and all have some intriguing qualities, but I see nothing in PM that makes me say, oh yeah, I understand why. He’s the retread’s retread and frankly seems droll compared to the other 3, stands out like a sore thumb. If he’s the choice, and it goes wrong, I can see the sandberg thing being even more pronounced and problematic.

    But I’m hopeful he was nothing more than a baseline, would be really out of step with what they represent. And the other 3 are very intriguing.

  11. Cheryl

    I’m getting tired of hearing about Sandberg. Let’s move on!!!

    1. johnbres2


  12. Todd

    I don’t know if he’s the best guy for the job right now, but I just have a feeling Alomar will have the best career of all the candidates. Almost every article I read about him has some quip about how his reputation as a bright baseball mind is growing quickly. I remember reading the same things about Guillen and Giardi.

  13. Cliffy

    it appears that Paplebon is signing with the Phillies. Does that open the door for a Cus/RedSox trade? Marmol for a couple of RedSox prospects. Could be a good move for both teams.

    1. Fishin Phil

      Sounds good to me Cliffy!

    2. Kyle

      Marmol’s backloaded contract is about to escalate and his shoulder is held together with chewing gum. I don’t think anyone’s going to give anything of value for him at this point.

      1. Fishin Phil

        Shhhh!!!!  Loose lips sink ships.

        What Kyle meant to say is that Marmol is a dominating closer and would be a great fit for Boston!

      2. Cliffy

        Please elaborate on Marmol’s supposed bad shoulder. I dont recall any such injury. Also with Papelbon signing for 12.5 per year he’s affordable. The 2 years on hia contract is preferable to most teams rather than longterm (4 year) contract for a closer.

        1. Kyle

          Brett covered it.

          He lost a clean 2.5 MPH off his average fastball last year. For a pitcher his age, that’s a dead giveaway for an impending shoulder injury.

          It’s the old adage: Elbows blow out, shoulders wear out. He can still pitch with it, but it’s just going to get worse.

  14. hansman1982

    One thing that he could have said that would make me want him more than Maddux:

    Instead of:

    “I’ve been removed from the National League for three years now,” Alomar said, “so I don’t know all about their players, but I can learn quickly.”

    “With free agency and the high frequency of trades you are constantly having to relearn and adjust to new lineups and new players each year.  You have a situation in the NL Central where the two biggest bats could be out of the Central or even out of the NL next year and with the advanced stats that are out there and all the resources the Cubs are putting into scouting each year I have no doubt in my mind that returning to the NL will be any more of a task than preparing for the 2012 season with the Indians.”

  15. BetterNews

    I just cant see the interest in Alomar. Like I stated yesterday, Ryno
    jast better credentials for the position and was not even considered.
    What gives?

    Please repond Brett

  16. BetterNews

    Ryno “has” managed, maybe not in the “Bigs”, but his managerial skills
    seem to outweigh Alomar’s by far. You can’t tell me because someone
    is bi-lingual he’s a better asset.

    1. Kyle

      You can’t tell me that because someone had a few decent minor-league seasons with vet-laden teams, they are a potential big-league manager.

      1. BetterNews

        Kyle—That’s absolutely what I am implying! He has all the “potential
        in the world. Lets hope he does not up with the Deadbirds because
        I will be sick to my stomach.

  17. BetterNews

    I hate to keep beating the Sandberg “drum” because I know its a
    dead issue(for now!) but my point was Ryno has managerial skills,
    is well liked in baseball circles(loved), and is just as good a leader,
    as Alomar. O.k. I might be a little “biased” but I just don’t buy
    the reasoning that Theo has laid out on this one.

    1. Todd

      My speculation on Ryno is that while he’s a tireless worker and probably the best example for a young professional baseball player to emulate day-to-day, he’s not a strategy guy. That’s why he’s not getting consideration from the front offices that know him best.

      1. BetterNews

        Todd—I can appreciate that. However how much strategy does baseball
        take? For the most part the manager is playing the odds, especially
        when just starting out.

    2. johnbres2

      I wasn’t too impressed with Alomar’s press conference, and my two favorites were Maddux and Sveum.  You are right that Sandberg has a the credentials on paper; but for some reason he simply isn’t on the short list that Theo developed in Boston.

      1. BetterNews

        Thats my question. What gives?

        1. johnbres2

          The only theory I have is that his dead-fish personality kept him off the list.

        2. Lou

          Maybe Theo and Co want Maddux because of their focus on the Cubs as a pitching/defensive team.

  18. johnbres2

    Interesting that Hoyer met the media alone after the completion of the Alomar press conf.  First time, I believe, Jed has been put out there by himself.  I like it, as he is, after all, the GM, and should be out front handling things like that.

  19. Mike F

    Yeah with Alomar, you can see the command presence, the charisma and fire of a competitor. But you have to balance that against some of the stuff he says he holds as a philosophy. And most of all we only know what he says, not how he did.

  20. Katie

    I liked Sandy’s interview today. He seems like a great fit if Maddux doesn’t want to move from
    TX. Sandy already lives in the Wrigleyville neighborhood. I think he has some great qualities and if the Cubs don’t move Big Z, I think if he’s the manager he could kick Z’s ass.