The Toronto Blue Jays have made it official with former Indians and Mariners manager Eric Wedge, hiring him to the role of player development adviser
The long-rumoured link between the Blue Jays and former major league manager Eric Wedge materialized earlier this afternoon as the 48-year-old will be joining the organization in the role of player development adviser.
The clear link here is Wedge’s days managing the Cleveland Indians under Blue Jays president Mark Shapiro.
In seven years managing the Indians, Wedge compiled a record of 561-573 (.495) with a 6-5 playoff record. He then managed the Seattle Mariners from 2011 through 2013, going 213-273.
Wedge also comes with some prominent links to the Buffalo baseball community, where he enjoyed an extremely successful managerial stint and has since been inducted into the Buffalo Baseball Hall of Fame.
The low-hanging fruit here is that Eric Wedge has been brought in as Toronto’s “manager in waiting” for if (nay, when!) John Gibbons is fired mid-season in 2016.
While that is by all means possible, this could just as easily represent the “more cooks in the kitchen” philosophy that is being adopted all around baseball at the moment. Not all organizations have gone as overboard as the Los Angeles Dodgers, but for baseball minds like Wedge whose salary wouldn’t be a book-breaker, it’s better to have him within the front office than outside of it.
If Wedge had of been hired in a more hands-on baseball role at this point in the offseason, perhaps back in the dugout with the triple-A Buffalo Bisons, then there would be more reason to believe Gibbons is on thin ice.