Don Mattingly may yet get a contract extension to manage the Dodgers beyond 2014, but in the meantime he’s going to have to be content with a second-place finish in voting for National League Manager of the Year.
Pirates manager Clint Hurdle, who took his team to its first postseason appearance since 1992, was the runaway winner, drawing 25 of 30 first-place ballots from a panel of voters representing the Baseball Writers Association of America.
Mattingly finished second ahead of Atlanta Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez. Mattingly had two first-place votes compared to three for Gonzalez but finished with more total points, 68 to 43. Hurdle had 140 total points.
Mattingly had 17 votes for second and seven for third. Two members from each NL city take part in voting.
Before the announcement, Mattingly appeared on MLB Network and said talks are progressing on an extension. The option year on his contract kicked in when the Dodgers made the playoffs, but he has nothing beyond next season.
“We’re in talks right now and things are going good,” he said in his first comments since an end-of-season press conference turned sour last month. “No real hurry or rush for me at this point. I don’t think for the Dodgers either. So things are good. Just working, moving forward, hoping to put something together more in the long term.”
Mattingly was criticized for his managerial moves in the playoffs, but his quiet, steady approach kept the Dodgers in contention through a slow start caused by injuries. The team was last in the Pacific Division on July 1 but went on a 42-8 run and took over first place on July 22. Their 11-game margin over second-place Arizona was their largest in a division or league race since they moved to Los Angeles in 1958.