Undeterred by countless questions and pressure for the real reason behind parting ways with manager Don Mattingly, Los Angeles Dodgers president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman and general manager Farhan Zaidi remained firm in their stance the split was mutual.
“Well I don’t want to get into the exact specifics of it, but it really was mutual,” Friedman said of separating from Mattingly as Dodgers manager.
“It was something that as we talked through the weekend and kind of got to Monday, there were things that were being discussed in how things were going, we kind of looked at each other and felt maybe this was the right time to do it.”
After days of mulling over the situation, Friedman said the two sides resumed talks before arriving at the decision that, “we felt it was what made sense for both sides.” On a conference call following the press conference, Mattingly repeated much of what Friedman and Zaidi had to say.
However mutual the separation may have been, the Dodgers obviously now are in need of a manager. They’re replacing one who had the respect of the clubhouse, and guided the team to three consecutive division titles for the first time in franchise history.
Multiple names have been mentioned as a potential replacement, including Chicago Cubs bench coach Dave Martinez and Dodgers minor league director. Experience, or lack of it, won’t be a hindrance.
“We’ll have candidates who have managerial experience and others who don’t,” Friedman said. “For us to cast as wide of a net as we want to, we’re going to go into it with an open mind.”
Zaidi expanded on the notion the Dodgers’ search won’t be limited to candidates who are ardent supporters of advanced stats. “I don’t think fluency with [analytics] is as necessary as just openness to ideas,” he said.
“One of the things we enjoyed with Donnie was that he was very open to new ideas. Our communication was very good both ways. He learned some from us, we learned some from him. We’re looking for someone that can lead.”