In my 2015 MLB Predictions piece, I wrote the following about Milwaukee Brewers manager Ron Roenicke:
Don’t be surprised if skipper Ron Roenicke gets the ax before the season is done.
Well, tonight the Brewers fired Roenicke.
The Brewers’ 7-18 record was the worst in MLB and already 11 1/2 games back of the St. Louis Cardinals in the NL Central.
In 2014, the Brewers led the NL Central for most of the season, but would experience an epic collapse beginning in late August in which they lost 22 of their final 31 games and finished a distant third behind the Cardinals and Pittsburgh Pirates (who ended up with their second consecutive NL Wild Card spot).
Most teams don’t recover from a thing like that the following season and thus needed a change in direction.
Roenicke took over the team in 2011 and took the Brewers to the NL Central title only to lose to the eventual World Series champion Cardinals in the NLCS.
The Brewers will announce Roenicke’s replacement tomorrow morning. My guess it will be an internal selection. Bench coach Jerry Narron has managed the Texas Rangers and the Cincinnati Reds while hitting coach Darnell Coles, third base coach Ed Sedar and first base coach Mike Guerrero have all managed in the Brewers’ minor league system.
UPDATE: The Brewers will announce that they have hired Craig Counsell as their new manager. Counsell has been a special assistant to Brewers GM Doug Melvin since 2012. He also occasionally fills in for Bob Uecker on color commentary for Brewers radio broadcasts.
Counsell has no previous managerial experience. He is best known for scoring the winning run in both the 1997 and 2001 World Series for the Florida Marlins and Arizona Diamondbacks, respectively. A Wisconsin native, Counsell played for the Brewers in 2004 and again from 2007 through 2011.
The Brewers are taking a shot in the dark. But perhaps Counsell can provide the kind of counsel that takes them to the top of the NL Central.