The Cleveland Guardians were a perennial contender under manager Terry Francona, who took over in 2013 and announced his retirement after the 2023 campaign.
After intense postseason battles, a World Series appearance, some health-related setbacks, and earning the love and respect of thousands of fans, Francona is stepping away from the game to focus on his health and family.
He leaves a huge void in the franchise’s clubhouse and dugout leadership.
With 921 wins, he is the winningest manager in Guardians history.
Now, the organization is tasked with bringing in the right candidate to succeed him.
They need to be well-versed in analytics and a student of the game with enough personality to manage certain situations.
According to MLB insider Jeff Passan, one name is starting to gain some separation in the race to become the next Guardians manager.
“Longtime major league catcher Stephen Vogt is emerging as a serious candidate for the Cleveland Guardians managerial job, sources tell ESPN. Vogt, 38, is a coach with Seattle and previously interviewed for San Francisco’s job, where Bob Melvin is the leading candidate,” Passan tweeted.
Longtime major league catcher Stephen Vogt is emerging as a serious candidate for the Cleveland Guardians managerial job, sources tell ESPN. Vogt, 38, is a coach with Seattle and previously interviewed for San Francisco’s job, where Bob Melvin is the leading candidate.
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) October 23, 2023
Vogt is a former MLB catcher with a career .707 OPS and 82 home runs.
He played for the Tampa Bay Rays, the Oakland Athletics, the Milwaukee Brewers, the Arizona Diamondbacks, and the San Francisco Giants.
His last season as a player was 2022.
On January 10, 2023, he was hired by the Seattle Mariners to be their bullpen and quality control coach.
He has had managerial aspirations for a while now, and it’s looking more and more likely that the Guardians are going to be the team that will give him his first chance.