St. Louis Cardinals: Three managers to replace Mike Matheny
The St. Louis Cardinals could well replace Matheny with someone already in the organization who has managerial experience.
The statement above is a bit cryptic. Let me add some clarity to it: Matheny could and should be replaced by Mike Shildt.
Shildt has managerial experience including having managed the St. Louis Cardinals’ triple-A affiliate in Memphis in 2015 and 2016. He has eight years of total managerial experience in the Cardinals organization. When he first managed in Springfield, he took that club to seventy-seven wins which set a team record.
Speaking to his leadership abilities, sixteen of the players he managed in Memphis made MLB debuts in 2015 and 2016. Sixteen!
He was promoted during the offseason prior to the 2017 season to a newly-created position of Quality Control Coach. I covered this promotion at the time of its announcement and you can read that here. As I said in that post, I was pleased with Shildt’s promotion and believed that he would be able to intelligently navigate the Matheny-yes-men clubhouse in ways to impact change.
The changes made by Mozeliak on Friday indicate a touch more freedom for Shildt to impact change as he is now moved to coaching third base. This was something that Shildt covered after Chris Maloney had joined Matheny’s staff. Shildt was a much better third base coach than Maloney in my opinion.
Friday’s changes also indicate to me that Shildt is likely the next to follow Matheny. Why? Mozeliak has now added two members of the organization who either coached with Shildt or preceded Shildt as manager of Memphis. These two are Mark Budaska and Pop Warner (Ron Warner).
With these guys on the squad, should Mozeliak dismiss Matheny (and thereby Mabry, which I think would happen in tandem), I believe that Shildt could and very likely would slide into the interim managerial title. This very likely would last the season and give him the chance to show that he has the chops to stay.
I would wholeheartedly support this move.