The Pursuit of Dave Martinez

By David Hill

When a team finds constant success despite severe payroll limitations, it is natural that a good deal of credit is given to the front office and coaching staff. Both Joe Maddon and Andrew Friedman have received credit for building the Rays from a doormat into a perennial contender, a team that has been able to compete against teams like the Red Sox and Yankees despite having a much lower payroll.

Naturally, when a team has sustained success as the Rays have had, other members of the coaching staff could be considered for other openings. With that being the case, it is no surprise that Dave Martinez has been interviewed for the open managerial position for the Chicago Cubs. Martinez, who had two separate stints with the Cubs in his playing days, said that he felt that the interview went well.

Martinez has been Maddon’s bench coach over the past six seasons, joining the staff as the Rays turnaround began. He has seen first hand what it means to be a part of a winning organization. Martinez has been considered a future manager over the past couple of years, having interviewed for several other jobs in the past. Of course, being under the tutelage of Maddon has certainly helped also. As so often happens, particularly in football, when a team starts to have success, other teams may have an interest in acquiring members of the coaching staff.

In essence, Martinez could end up being the first branch of the Joe Maddon Managerial Tree. As other teams see the success of the Rays, they may feel that hiring a coach that has not only learned from one of the more respected managers in the game, but is also coming from a team with a tradition of winning could help improve the fortunes of the franchise. Success is thought to breed success, and bringing in a coach from a successful organization such as the Rays could potentially help turnaround a team with a losing culture.

Dave Martinez has been thought of as a potential future manager for the past couple of years now. That time may be coming soon.