The San Diego Padres fired manager Jayce Tingler last week after he failed to take a team with a $185 million payroll to the postseason. It was a disappointing year for a franchise that many predicted could go deep into the playoffs this season. Tingler was hired in October 2019 to replace Andy Green, who was brought on by president of baseball operations A.J. Preller back in 2015. Neither Tingler nor Green had major-league managing experience when they were hired by the Padres, and both owner Peter Seidler and Preller have said that it is not a requirement for the current role.
Here are 12 potential candidates who I think they should consider hiring. From personal experience, I believe a manager who has a proven track record is what this team needs right now, but that doesn’t mean a rookie manager couldn’t potentially do well if given the opportunity. (And even though Preller is signed through 2026 and is not on the hot seat, I think he’ll be the first to tell you that his next managerial hiring might be the most important move he’s had to make since taking the job.)
Bruce Bochy, 66, is a future Hall of Fame manager with three world championships and four National League pennants. He started his managerial career with the Padres from 1995-2006, finishing first in four different seasons, and was voted NL Manager of the Year in 1996, his second season with the team.
From 2007-19, he managed the San Francisco Giants and finished in first or second place six times, winning the World Series in 2010, 2012 and 2014. He was well known for his deft handling of a pitching staff and provided calm, strong leadership throughout his career and learned to embrace analytics during his time in San Francisco. He has told his friends that he is open to returning to managing, and a reunion with the Padres could be a great match. There are some parallels to Tony La Russa returning to manage the ready-to-win White Sox at age 77 and that’s worked out so far on the South Side. The Padres will be in a similar position in 2022 and the steady hand and championship experience of Bochy would play well for the short term.
Ron Washington, 69, managed the Texas Rangers from 2007-2014, and in his time there, the team won two American League pennants in 2010 and 2011 but failed to win the World Series in either year. His overall managerial record is 664-611, including four consecutive 90-win seasons (2010-13). Washington finished in the top 5 in AL Manager of the Year voting on three different occasions before his surprising resignation in 2014. He was a finalist for the Braves’ managerial opening in 2016 but lost out to Brian Snitker. He has an aggressive style that would work well with the Padres offense, as he’s always trying to push the envelope on the bases. He’s presently on the Braves coaching staff and deserves a lot of credit for his hard work with the best defensive infield in the sport. He has a tremendous work ethic, strong communication skills and a high baseball IQ and is respected throughout the game.