The San Diego Padres hired Andy Green to be the manager of their rebuild before the 2016 season and, despite a 119-159 record, the club thinks they found the right man.
San Diego gave Green a three-year contract extension that will keep the skipper in place through the 2021 season.
One of the biggest jobs for Green was not so much winning ball games (although he maintains he manages to win every night) as it was developing young players into legitimate big leaguers.
Performances from guys like 22-year-old Manuel Margot and 21-year-old Allen Córdoba, a Rule 5 draftee, have convinced the Padres brass that Green has the franchise on the right track.
“Throughout the past two seasons, Andy has consistently proven to us his leadership abilities and strong character,” said General Manager A.J. Preller. “Andy’s knowledge of the game and passion for his players has earned him respect in the clubhouse and throughout the organization. As we continue to build a system that produces winning baseball from top to bottom, I am confident that Andy provides the leadership and stability needed to deliver a championship to San Diego.”
The ownership group footing the bill for the risky reconstruction also sees Green as an asset.
“We remain committed to our plan to build a championship team with homegrown talent, and we are confident in the direction we are moving as an organization,” said Padres Executive Chairman Ron Fowler and Managing Partner Peter Seidler. “Andy is invested in the development of our players at all levels, both as athletes and as people. His managerial style is characterized by intelligence, preparation and integrity, and he has continually proven himself to be the right person to lead this young team.”
Green just turned 40 a month ago and seemed to have the ability to connect with the younger roster the Friars have committed to.
“I’m both excited and motivated by the opportunity to continue to lead our players as we build a championship-caliber club for the fans of San Diego,” said Green. “I’m appreciative for the expression of faith this extension represents. I’m confident we’re in the process of building something very special for our fans, and I’m thrilled to continue that work with our players, coaches and everyone else who works relentlessly to make the Padres great."
The majority of successful franchises have a GM and a Manager/Head Coach who are on the same page and the Padres believe they have found that dynamic in their duo.
"He makes me better. He challenges me and hopefully I challenge him," said Preller. "We're not trying to sugarcoat things. I respect him, I think he's a good baseball person. I really enjoy (our relationship), honestly."
As for the timing of the deal -- in the middle of August -- Preller said the organization has been discussing the idea for months because they did not want to let Green enter the final year of his deal, which would have been 2018, without extending him. It is a symbol and message of stability to the franchise, the fans and the baseball world that they are staying the course on their commitment to developing young players.