Posted by: gravessack | September 23, 2017

Is The Front Office Hinting At Something By Firing Mientkiewicz?

When newly acquainted Chief Baseball Officer Derek Falvey and General Manager Thad Levine started working together 11 months ago, they promised changes would be made to improve the Twins. The duo made that known when they fired two major league coaches right away, then gradually let go of several scouts. Not shockingly, their latest firing frustrated a lot of people; but more importantly, what does that mean for Manager Paul Molitor’s future with the club?

On September 15, the Twins parted ways with Single-A Manager Doug Mientkiewicz.Former Twins minor league coach Doug Mientkiewicz in dugout What enraged some people is how he was fired. Levine had one of his assistants call Mientkiewicz while he was picking up after Hurricane Irma in Florida. That assistant would not give a reason for his dismissal, frustrating him. Mientkiewicz was a head coach in the Twins Minor League system for five seasons with two teams.

In 2013 and 2014, he led the Fort Myers Miracle to the play-offs, winning the championship in the latter year. The 43-year-old jumped up to lead Chattanooga to a Southern League Championship the next year. This past year, he was demoted to manage at Single-A again. Mientkiewicz was dealt the blow, even after posting a 385-299 record. He can be credited for helping center fielder Byron Buxton through the system.

The departure should be a warning sign to current coaches that they are not safe, as Levine came here to change the direction of this ball club, and the Pohlads gave him free rein to do whatever he wants. My first thought of the firing was: Could this be a sign that Molitor’s time here is running out and that the Twins already have a plan?

When Falvey and Levine arrived here, Owner Jim Pohlad made it clear to them that Molitor will manage in 2017. Now in his final week of his three-year contract, Molitor must be feeling some pressure because managing the club to the play-offs for the first time since 2010 might not be the only factor if he is granted an extension. I would be in favor of them searching for a fresh manager only if they make the right choice. I prefer a leader who is enthralled in helping his team exceed expectations, is not afraid to tell his team what they are doing wrong, and can get the most out of his players.

Could that plan be interviewing and giving Mientkiewicz the opportunity to manage the Twins? That was one of my initial inklings, however, that does not seem likely now, as it was reported that the break-up did not go smoothly. Plus, he is now mad at Falvey and Levine. Due to this surprising news, there is no telling what they will do next and the major league staff is most likely their next project at season’s end.

Written by: Michael L. Sack

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Responses

  1. Great article….thanks for the information.


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