Don WakamatsuThe Rays have released eight names as their “preliminary” list of managerial candidates:

  • Dave Martinez
  • Charlie Montoyo
  • Manny Acta
  • Ron Wotus
  • Don Wakamatsu
  • Raul Ibanez
  • Craig Counsell
  • Kevin Cash

President of baseball operations Matt Silverman said he expects other names will be added in the near future.

“This is a preliminary list of candidates,” said Silverman. “We expect it will grow as we continue through the process.”

Martinez is the obvious candidate, having served as Joe Maddon’s bench coach. Kevin Cash also has ties to the Rays, having played 33 games for the Devil Rays in 2005.

It is nice to see Charlie Montoyo’s name on the list as he has enjoyed great success managing Rays minor leaguers in Durham.

The name that stands out to me is Don Wakamatsu. When he was hired by the Mariners prior to the 2009 season some called him “the next Joe Maddon.” When he was fired after the 2010 season, I even wondered if Wakamatsu would end up as the Rays’ bench coach if Martinez was hired to be a manager by another team. This past season, Wakamatsu served as the bench coach for the Royals.

The surprising name on the list is Raul Ibanez who just finished his 19th season as a player and has not indicated yet that he is done playing. He has been linked recently to the Yankees hitting coach position.

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9 Comments

  1. Chris says:

    Raul Ibanez may not have indicated he is done playing, but his play this year has.

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  2. Matt says:

    Definitely a very "rays-like" list of candidates. If they give it to Martinez I would imagine Montoya gets promoted to the bench coach role. Wotus certainly intrigues me, and has been the Giants bench coach for ever a decade, so he's been apart of their success from the get-go. I wouldn't touch Acta with a 50 ft pole. He reeks of failure, and has been fired twice as a manager, by the Nationals and Indians. I don't know why teams would still think Acta has anything left to offer in a manager role.

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  3. paco says:

    Do teams normally release a list of candidates like that? Seems odd to me...

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  4. Mr. Smith 1980 says:

    Martinez was my initial choice, but the longer I think about it the more intrigued I am to see Montoya get his shot after a very successful run in Durham. He already has relationships with and respect from his former players in addition to his familiarity with a winning atmosphere.

    I agree with Matt, Acta CANNOT be the next manager!

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  5. TOM says:

    Originally I thought it should be Martinez or Montoya but I also think Wotus is very interesting. Right now I think Montoya would be there best bet.

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  6. Gus says:

    I think some combnation of two or three of these guys should be the core of the staff. Keep Hickey, make one of them (Ibanez?) 1b coach or batting coach. Kick Tom Foley upstairs and make room for Montoya as 3b coach.

    I also like Topkin's idea of a larger role for Baldelli. Something about that guy that people really like.

    At the end the coaching staff should reflect a 50-50 mix of people currently in the Rays system and some fresh thought. I think Davey is always going to be Robin to Maddon's Batman, and just might as well let him go there (and use some minor league player "compensation" for him as a way to settle the tampering case in a face-saving way for both the Cubs and Rays).

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  7. monte says:

    I didn't know the president was into baseball. I thought basketball was his thing. I mean basketball and golf.

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