Pros and Cons of the Cardinals Manager Candidates


When Tony La Russa stepped down from his position just days after the World Series had ended, the Cardinals kept their names front and center on the sporting priority list of most local fans.  There was no “offseason”, rather a seemless transition from one type of drama to the next.

With the search for the fourth manager in the last three decades officially underway, we felt it necessary to offer up a look at one major pro and one significant con for each of the named candidates.

Jose Oquendo
Pro: Unlike most managers, his extensive experience as a player means he could literally teach everyone on the field something about their position.  No matter what position they play, trust me, he’s been there.

Con: Based on his extended tenure as the third base coach, Oquendo’s misguided first priority may be to suspend any player on the current roster that has repeatedly disobeyed his authority and felt it justified to cruise through his stop signs. Good luck resigning Albert when he’s got a stiff punishment waiting for him here in St. Louis, Mozeliak.

Ryne Sandberg
Pro:  Hiring the guy that Cubs fans were begging for when Mike Quade was brought on might ruffle some feathers up north. While that can’t be the sole reason to hire him, there’s nothing wrong with being a side bonus.

Con: From day one of his tenure, it would set off an avalanche of message board posters and talk show callers referencing him by the name “Ryan”. Mix in a few “Sundberg’s” too and after a few months, intelligent baseball fans in town might reach their breaking point with mispronunciations of the new manager’s name.

Mike Matheny
Pro: Some of the key personalities in the Cardinals clubhouse right now are ones that Matheny has interacted with and has earned the respect of.  That includes players such as Pujols, Molina and Carpenter. Never a bad thing when entering a team with no managerial experience.

Con: Anyone seen brandishing a hunting knife in the locker room will face immediate suspension.  Let it be known, when it comes to sharp objects that can lead to a player missing an entire postseason due to self inflicted injury, Mike Matheny will rule with an iron fist.

Terry Francona
Pro: He already has experience celebrating a World Series victory in front of St. Louis fans.  And let’s be honest, this organization will probably never call on him to manage a player as mentally fragile as Manny Ramirez.

Con: Cardinals fans who were alive in the 80′s can only accept one player/coach nicknamed “Tito” in their hearts.  And sorry, Francona, but that belongs to Mr. Landrum.

Chris Maloney
Pro:  The Cardinals roster is heavier than normal with homegrown talent and most of that has passed through Memphis at some point or another.  Relationships with the players are a big part of managing in the big leagues.

Con: Upon hearing that the Cardinals just hired someone named Chris Maloney to manager their team, fans of Law and Order: SVU will be really freaking bitter that this is the reason he left their show last year.

Joe McEwing
Pro: Being on the franchise’s Mt. Scrapmore, he would likely receive a standing ovation every time he walked to the mound to make a pitching change. Just crowd habit.

Con: He would likely receive a standing ovation every time he walked to the mound to make a pitching change.


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