Growing up in the 1980s, Donnie Baseball was one of my favorite players to watch. Seeing him in Dodger Blue still creeps me out.
After he lost his bid in 2007 to replace Joe Torre, he followed Torre to Los Angeles and has been there ever since. There is no better person for Mattingly to be with and learn the game from.
In an article in the LA Times, Bill Shaikin writes:
Torre and the Dodgers have a mutual interest in grooming hitting coach Don Mattingly as his successor. Mattingly coached for Torre in New York, then followed him to L.A. “When it’s time for Joe not to manage the club, we would like his replacement to be on our staff,” General Manager Ned Colletti said.
If the Yankees do not return to the playoffs — after spending $423 million on Mark Teixeira, CC Sabathia and A.J. Burnett — we cannot imagine Manager Joe Girardi will be invited back. The Yankees selected Girardi over Mattingly as the replacement for Torre, and perhaps they’ll ask their beloved first baseman for a do-over.
Mattingly, who has no managerial experience, said Torre has promised him nothing. “I feel like he’s helping me prepare,” Mattingly said, “but I don’t know if that’s necessarily for here. I liked it in New York. I like it here. I like the game.”
The article has a quote from Mattingly, and he will not speculate where he wants to manage next, but I’m pretty sure everyone on this side of the coast knows he would love to don the pinstripes again and add to the championship years.
I’m more inclined to let Girardi finish his contract, and if by next year there isn’t significant progress, bring in Mattingly or another good manager to manage these players.