I checked the comments on this blog throughout the day and night, and I’m so appreciative of the many kind words. Please don’t think for a minute that they went ignored. They meant a lot to me.
I plan on watching football today and perhaps consuming a drink that includes an olive or two. There could be a cigar in my future. But I wanted to revisit a few of manager Buck Showalter’s comments from yesterday.
I spoke to Showalter toward the end of the season about his contract and whether extension talks had started. He gave the exact same response as the one he offered up to reporters yesterday while standing in the Orioles’ dugout.
Showalter provided a reminder that he has a year remaining on his deal. He had no interest in engaging in negotiations during the season, and he’s not going to lose sleep over it during the winter.
“I have a contract for next year,” he said yesterday. “We have people in our country and our city, they don’t know what’s going on tomorrow. I mean, really? I’ve got a contract for next year. (Owner Peter Angelos) and the organization committed to me long before they had to. They had a great deal of faith in me just to put it beyond a week.
“That’s a non-issue to me. I’m committed and I’ve fallen in love with this city and we’ll see what happens. That would be an honor. You take every job with the idea that it’s going to be your last one. But to me it’s a non-issue in any form or fashion.”
Showalter is saying all the right things, of course. He’s not consumed by the almighty dollar and he dropped the “L” word on Baltimore. No wonder fans want to name their first born “Buck,” whether it’s a boy or a girl.
Has there been a more popular manager here who’s initials weren’t EW? I guess Davey Johnson rivaled him, though he was dealt a much better hand than Showalter. Compare the rosters and payrolls.
Angelos wants to keep Showalter in Baltimore. He confirmed those feelings after Game 5 and I was told the same thing shortly before the playoffs. Extension talks haven’t taken place, but they will, and it’s just a question of whether Showalter will be receptive to them.
Showalter always talks as if he knows that he has a short shelf life. He’ll make references to something that’s due to happen in the next few years and act as though he won’t be around to see it. But it’s hard to imagine Showalter wearing out his welcome anytime soon in Baltimore.
Maybe the same words were typed in Arizona and Texas, but he’s the face of this franchise. He’s the miracle worker without Patty Duke. On paper, this team never had a chance. In the dugout, it was good enough to come within one win of the American League Championship Series.
What could sway Showalter in another direction and lead him to pass on an extension? A burning desire, and an offer, to become a general manager.
Showalter takes great pride in his role in building the expansion Diamondbacks. He was intrigued by the Orioles’ job before the arrival of executive vice president Dan Duquette. Ownership deemed him too valuable in the dugout and wanted a more experienced hand in the front office.
After what Showalter accomplished this year, he’ll have a tough time shedding the manager label, if he so desires.
The Orioles would be wise to start those extension talks, which will be done privately, with as little attention placed on them as humanly possible in this age of social media.
I’m guessing most fans would “L” word for it to happen.