John Gibbons departure as manager
When a team is coming off back to back disappointing seasons and is on the cusp of a rebuild, that’s a pretty sure recipe for a change in coaching staff, especially in the manager’s seat. That’s exactly what happened in Toronto, as the front office and Gibbons agreed to part ways with a year left on his contract, and the team hired former Tampa Bay Ray bench coach Charlie Montoyo as his replacement.
As far as the on-field production of the team, Gibby was always a polarizing figure among fans and critics of the Jays. Some felt that he was a little too relaxed at times, or any other criticism you can think of for a losing club, really. That’s what happens in baseball, but I always felt the skipper took things in stride and was generally good for the organization. To that end, I don’t think there are many Blue Jays fans that would say they don’t like John Gibbons, the man. To me, he’s always seemed like a guy that would be a blast to sit down and chat with, and he was very respected among players and media.
It’s bittersweet seeing someone like Gibbons depart, as it’s obvious that the team could probably use a fresh voice, even if he can’t be blamed for the rosters that were to handed him by the front office, or the multiple injuries that happened to the veteran group. He was a leftover face from the Anthopoulos era as well though, and now Atkins and Shapiro have a candidate of their choosing in the manager’s seat. That change may be even more significant than any of the veteran players who’ve moved on in recent years.
He charming Texan finished his second tenure with the organization and has a lifetime record of 793-789 with the Blue Jays, including two trips to the ALCS. That’s good for second in franchise history behind only Cito Gaston, and will have him remain a face of this club for many years to come.
He’s indicated that he would like to manage again elsewhere, but if this is retirement for Gibby, well, then I hope he enjoys it.