It used to be that there was a hierarchy to managing in Major League Baseball. Skippers had to work a few years in the minors before getting the call to lead a major league ballclub.
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But with former players like Don Mattingly, Robin Ventura and Mike Matheny having success with no managing experience, that wisdom is being challenged.
Count Cal Ripken Jr. among those interested in becoming a big league manager — so long as there’s no apprenticeship.
Ripken hasn’t exactly kept a low profile since retiring from baseball, but his pursuits mostly have been in philanthropy, along with penning a few books and doing some analysis work for TBS. However, Ripken was asked about managing during an edition of Comcast SportsNet’s "Table Manners", and he revealed that not only has he been asked to interview before, but he also isn’t ruling out managing in the future.
“I don’t know. I’ve been asked to interview for managing jobs before, not too long ago,” Ripken said. “And I’ve always thought if you have no interest in taking it, then you shouldn’t go through the process.
“But I’m curious as I’ll get out there, what questions are they going to ask? What baseball quiz are they going to give me that I can’t answer? So to me it’s interesting.”
Ripken doesn’t think his lack of experience would be an obstacle.
“We’ve seen Ventura, who was a surprise pick, Mike Matheny, who’s done a really great job with St. Louis and he had no experience whatsoever,” Ripken said. “Donnie Mattingly was a coach under one of the great managers in Joe Torre.
“You gotta sit in the hot seat to learn yourself and the hot seat is that manager seat.”
Would Ripken make a good manager? It’s nearly impossible to say, but with the way the Orioles have played well under Buck Showalter, the Baltimore job may not be opening up any time soon.
Could you picture Ripken wearing colors other than orange and black? Check out everything Ripken had to say in the video below.