The Mets made a significant investment in Max Scherzer during 2021 free agency. Now, he’s hoping that the team will make another significant investment as the Mets try to become a World Series contender once again.
New York still needs to hire a manager to replace the departed Luis Rojas. If Scherzer has it his way, that man would be Buck Showalter, according to Sports Illustrated’s Pat Ragazzo.
Sources: Mets ace pitcher Max Scherzer has made it known that he prefers Buck Showalter to be the team’s next manager— Pat Ragazzo (@ragazzoreport) December 7, 2021
It’s unclear whether Scherzer’s preference will be taken into account for filling the vacancy, but it’s worth noting that the Mets signed him to a record-breaking deal. He will make $130 million over three years. That average annual value of $43.3 million makes him the highest-paid player per year in MLB history.
As such, Scherzer’s opinion probably carries some weight, even though the 37-year-old has only recently joined the team.
Showalter, 65, is arguably one of the better manager candidates on the market. He has 20 years of MLB manager experience and has coached the Yankees, Diamondbacks, Rangers and Orioles during his career. He has won AL Manager of the Year three times and has a career record of 1,551-1,517.
The only blemish on Showalter’s resume is that he has never appeared in a World Series. He has guided his teams to just five postseason appearances but came within a win of going to the World Series with the Orioles in 2014.
Showalter has worked as an analyst for MLB Network since departing the Orioles, so that’s something worth considering. However, he has had several multi-year layoffs while managing. That includes a couple of years during which he helped build the expansion Diamondbacks in 1996 and 1997, a three-year stretch with ESPN after leaving Arizona and a few years during which he consulted with the Guardians and returned to ESPN.
So, Showalter has experience with long-term absences from the dugout. He should do fine if called upon to return.
The Mets aren’t only considering Showalter for their vacant manager spot. Six candidates are expected to be interviewed for the job, per MLB.com. They are as follows:
- Buck Showalter, former Orioles manager
- Brad Ausmus, former Angels, Tigers manager
- Joe Espada, Astros bench coach
- Bob Geren, Dodgers bench coach, former A’s manager
- Don Kelly, Pirates bench coach
- Matt Quatraro, Rays bench coach
We’ll soon see if Scherzer gets his wish or if new Mets GM Billy Eppler selects another man for the job.