Last week it was reported that Red Sox bench coach Ron Roenicke would be named the team’s new manager. Today the Boston Globe is reporting that that is finally becoming official. But there’s one caveat: he’ll be the interim manager. He’s only on board through the 2020 season.
There is no legal distinction between “manager” and “interim manager” in the rule book. Calling someone an “interim” manager is simply a signal that you intend to keep looking around for a better one. It’s like the open marriage of managerial titles. It’s like picking a Soviet Premier in the early 80s, back then they used to drop like flies. Which is to say that neither the Red Sox’ nor Ron Roenicke’s futures are exactly etched in stone with this hire. Not that that’s totally crazy given that the Red Sox have now had five different managers in the past ten years, two of whom won the dang World Series.
Roenicke managed the Milwaukee Brewers from 2011-15, compiling a record of 342-331. His best season with the Brewers was his first, when the club won the NL Central with a record of 96-66 and made it to the NLCS, where they fell to the St. Louis Cardinals. After being dismissed by Milwaukee he coached with the Dodgers and the Angels. He also coached for the Angels for several years prior to taking the Brewers’ job.
How long he’ll be in Boston, we have no idea.
On Sunday, we learned that while the Nationals would continue to pay their minor leaguers throughout the month of June, their weekly stipend would be lowered by 25 percent, from $400 to $300. In an incredible act of solidarity, Nationals reliever Sean Doolittle and his teammates put out a statement, saying they would be covering the missing $100 from the stipends.
After receiving some criticism, the Nationals reversed course, agreeing to pay their minor leaguers their full $400 weekly stipend.
Doolittle and co. have not withdrawn their generosity. On Wednesday, Doolittle released another statement, saying that he and his major league teammates would continue to offer financial assistance to Nationals minor leaguers through the non-profit organization More Than Baseball.
The full statement:
Washington Nationals players were excited to learn that our minor leaguers will continue receiving their full stipends. We are grateful that efforts have been made to restore their pay during these challenging times.
We remain committed to supporting them. Nationals players are partnering with More Than Baseball to contribute funds that will offer further assistance and financial support to any minor leaguers who were in the Nationals organization as of March 1.
We’ll continue to stand with them as we look forward to resuming our 2020 MLB season.
Kudos to Doolittle and the other Nationals continuing to offer a helping hand in a trying time. The players shouldn’t have to subsidize their employers’ labor expenses, but that is the world we live in today.