San Diego Padres hire Mike Shildt as manager

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The Padres hired Mike Shildt on Tuesday to become the 23rd manager in franchise history, finalizing a two-year deal with the 55-year-old, who spent the last two seasons as the club’s senior advisor.

The club features Shildt in a live press conference from Petco Park streamed here and above.

In his first tenure as a big league manager, Shildt led the Cardinals from 2018-2021 after spending more than a decade as a coach in the St. Louis system. He won the 2019 National League Manager of the Year award and reached the playoffs in each of his three full seasons, while receiving Manager of the Year votes in all four, including his interim campaign.

“Mike is a proven winner as a manager at the Major League level, and he brings more than two decades of professional baseball experience to the role,” Padres general manager AJ Preller said in a statement. . “During his time here, Mike has demonstrated a strong baseball intellect, a passion for teaching the game and has built relationships with minor and major league players and staff. We believe Mike is the right person to lead the Padres forward in our continued pursuit of a World Series championship.

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Shildt’s hiring comes less than a month after former San Diego manager Bob Melvin accepted the manager’s job in San Francisco after the Padres allowed him to interview with the Giants.

That began a four-week process in which the Padres interviewed several candidates, including offensive coordinator/bench coach Ryan Flaherty, Angels on-field coach Benji Gil and former Angels manager Phil Nevin. Shildt and Flaherty were the perceived favorites for the job, and it remains unclear whether Flaherty will remain with the organization on Shildt’s staff.

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Shildt is tasked with managing a Padres team looking to bounce back from a disappointing 2023 season. Despite World Series ambitions, San Diego finished 82-80 and missed the playoffs.

The offseason will undoubtedly bring some changes. But most of the Padres’ core should remain intact, particularly on offense. Shildt, having spent the last two seasons with the club, already knows this core.

This apparently appealed to Preller during the hiring process. Shildt will be the first of Preller’s five full-time managers he previously worked with in the big leagues.

“We’re definitely thinking about it,” Preller said last week. “… People who know our players, know our situation, know our organization, that’s definitely an advantage.”

The hiring process was suspended last week as the organization mourned the death of President Peter Seidler, who died last Tuesday of undisclosed causes. Owner Eric Kutsenda was named interim president and supervisor Friday.

It remains unclear which coaches will return to Shildt’s staff, although Preller recently confirmed that Ruben Niebla, under contract through the 2024 season, would return as pitching coach.

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