There’s a mutual respect between White Sox manager Robin Ventura and Jim Leyland, who stepped down as the Detroit Tigers’ skipper on Monday.
Leyland, 69, announced his retirement on Monday but said he made the decision in early September. The long-time manager cited the energy needed to man the position as a reason for leaving and said he would join the Tigers front office in a soon-to-be-determined role.
“I don't feel be fair to organization for me to continue,” Leyland said. “Fuel was starting to get low. … I can't imagine the thrills I've had in the last eight years.”
The Tigers had a 700-597 (.540) in Leyland’s eight seasons. Leyland, who led the Florida Marlins to a World Series title in 1997 and two American League pennants with Detroit, finishes with a career record of 1769-1728 (.506). He also managed the Colorado Rockies for one season and spent 11 seasons with the Pittsburgh Pirates.
“He’s been in different places and done well,” Ventura said in September. “We’ve done it in different routes. I don’t have anything but respect for him. Where he’s been and what he’s done speaks for itself.”
Leyland asked Ventura to be part of his All-Star coaching staff in July. The veteran manager has been complimentary of Ventura since he joined the White Sox in 2012.
“Robin Ventura is one of the great guys in the game,” Leyland said. “He was a great player and he’s going to be a great manager and he’s a total professional in every sense of the word. I really like him a lot.”
As for why Leyland thinks Ventura would fare well as a manager:
“He’s got good instincts for people. He’s got a good disposition about him. He obviously knows the game. He’s not really excitable. I think he’s going to be a terrific manager.”