Give Me Paul Molitor For The Home Run
The Minnesota Twins announced Paul Molitor as their next manager on Monday morning. In doing so, social media networks exploded with opinions of both excitement and anger in the hiring of the Hall of Fame player. As Paul Molitor steps into the dugout as the Twins new leader, he represents a boom or bust opportunity that I find myself on the boom side of.
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Believed to be tabbed as the manager in waiting when brought onto the Minnesota Twins coaching staff a few years ago, Molitor had ideas of his own. Rather than having been groomed through the Twins system as with Ron Gardenhire and Tom Kelly, Molitor was brought in because of what his baseball mind was already believed to be.
Ron Gardenhire was never at the cutting edge of baseball ideals. He was never going to embrace analytics, and it took much more than an arm twisting for him to employ a shift or get runners moving.
While Molitor is no Joe Maddon at this point, he definitely has the ability to light his own path. Although it can be considered a downside that Molitor has no previous managerial experience, and that the track record is non existent, this can also be seen as opportunity. In Minnesota, Molitor can establish himself, and has the opportunity to become his own success story.
Minnesota has pieces, and many of them are young. The Twins currently have one of the best farm systems in all of baseball. Phil Hughes looked like the ace that his numbers suggested he could be outside of Yankees Stadium. Players like Danny Santana and Kennys Vargas emerged at the big league level. For Molitor, there are pieces in place.
As the rest of the coaching staff is worked out, Molitor will then get to work. As much as he represents a level of importance, those around him will also further the level of success that the Twins can reach.
As the next few weeks unfold, look for the Twins to continue to work towards making 2015 the season that gets Paul Molitor the manager on the map, and the turnaround the franchise needs underway. Hiring for a focal point of an organization is always going to be tough, putting someone without experience in the role will always be scrutinized, but in this instance, the Twins got it right.