Manager Bob Geren of the Oakland Athletics looks on from the dugout in the game with the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim at Angel Stadium in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)
The Oakland Athletics fired manager Bob Geren today after just 63 games of the 2011 season with a 27-36 record.
Plenty of managers have had records like that and survived to finish the season, or even multiple seasons beyond a poor start. Geren, though, hadn't done well in his four-plus seasons in Oakland -- his best year being a .500 finish -- so the A's likely figured, pull the plug now rather than later.
This appears to be an early firing -- but there have been plenty of others this early in the season, and some even earlier. Going back to 2000, there have been 16 other managers who were fired before the All-Star break, and some before the snow melted in their town.
There's little or no snow in April in Tampa, but Larry Rothschild was dumped as Devil (yes, they still had some of that in them) Rays manager after 14 games in 2001. Three 93+ loss seasons and a 4-10 start didn't help him. He has had a long and successful career as a pitching coach since his firing from Tampa Bay. There was one other early firing in 2001: John Boles, known mostly for his googly-eyed stare, was fired as Marlins manager 48 games into the season. Johnny Oates also departed from the Rangers after 28 games that year, but his was a resignation, not a firing.
Lasting only one more game than Rothschild, Davey Lopes was fired by the Brewers only 15 games into the 2002 season. He'd come off a 94-loss year in 2001 and the Brew Crew was 3-12 when he got the ax. It wasn't likely Davey's fault -- the 2002 Brewers were the worst team in franchise history, losing 106 games. Lopes has also made a nice career for himself as a coach for several teams.
One of the most famous early firings in recent years was Jeff Torborg, who was fired from what was seen as an underachieving Marlins team after going 16-22 in 38 games in 2003. That Marlins team did all right under Jack McKeon. Oddly, Torborg had also been fired after 38 games as Mets manager in 1993.
Here's the rest of the early firings from 2004-2010:
|Manager||Team||Games (Record)||Year fired|
|Bob Brenly||Diamondbacks||79 (29-50)||2004|
|Tony Pena||Royals||33 (8-25)||2005|
|Dave Miley||Reds||70 (27-43)||2005|
|Sam Perlozzo||Orioles||69 (29-40)||2007|
|Jerry Narron||Reds||82 (31-51)||2007|
|John Gibbons||Blue Jays||74 (34-39)||2008|
|Dave Trembley||Orioles||54 (15-39)||2004|
|A.J. Hinch||Diamondbacks||79 (31-48)||2010|
There is one thing every single one of these managers have in common: not one of them managed another game in the major leagues after their early-season boot. Bob Geren likely won't, either.