By Nathan Petrashek
Ron Roenicke was ousted as Brewers manager tonight, and one and done pretty much sums up his tenure with the team.
Roenicke inherited a can’t-miss roster in 2011, winning 96 games en route to an NLCS appearance. He placed 2nd in manager of the year voting after the season, losing to Kirk Gibson (which should itself tell you something about manager of the year, but I digress).
Since then, the Brewers have gone 245-265, including a September collapse in 2014 that ranks among the worst in MLB history. The front office left Roenicke dangle for a while at the end of last season, but made the somewhat baffling decision to exercise the option on his contract for this year. Then, in spring training, the team picked up his 2016 option, only to can Roenicke about a month and a half later.
What should be pretty obvious from this sequence is the front office has no idea what it’s doing. Doug Melvin talked openly about rebuilding recently, and word is that the team is actively shopping its veterans. If that’s the case, there’s absolutely no harm in letting Roenicke ride into the sunset after this year. If your ship is going down, it doesn’t really matter who’s doing the steering.
But this? Dumping Roenicke at this point smacks of a temper tantrum, an impetuous move made by an angry owner who maybe, despite all evidence to the contrary, still thinks this roster has a chance to win. The team’s announcement of a new manager – scheduled for tomorrow at 10:30 am – will be telling. If rumors are true, and Ron Gardenhire is a leading candidate, Attanasio will have shown only that, despite his investment background, he knows how to throw good money after bad.