Mike Shildt will have to find his cardinal path to the unemployment line.
On Thursday, the first stun of the offseason came when the Cardinals sacked Shildt, handing him his marching papers after a 90-game winning season that featured a 17-game winning streak in the later stages of the 2021 campaign. President of St. Louis, John Mozeliak, formalized this decision at a press conference.
The Cardinals would gain a wild card spot in the NL in 2021 but lose 3-1 to the Dodgers with 106 wins, which would prove to be the last time Shildt would manage a game for St. Louis.
The Redbirds will be looking for a long-term solution again after sacking Shildt after three seasons, all of which ended in the playoffs.
Here’s why the Cardinals decided to leave Shildt:
Why did the Cardinals fire Mike Shildt?
Cardinals president John Mozeliak said the team decided to leave Schildt because of a “philosophical difference” in the direction of the team at a press conference on Thursday.
Cardinals president John Mozeliak said he fired manager Mike Shildt earlier today because of a “philosophical difference” in the direction of the team. “We’ve decided internally that it would be better to go our separate ways now,” he said, even though Shildt had a year left.
– Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) October 14, 2021
John Mozeliak makes it official, announcing that Mike Shildt will not be returning as manager of the Cardinals. “We have determined that we have a philosophical difference in the direction our Major League club is taking.”
– Mark Feinsand (@Feinsand) October 14, 2021
Mozeliak would not explain what precisely these “philosophical differences” are. Mozeliak would also say that the team have several candidates in mind to replace Shildt.
The Cardinals manager still had a year on his contract and reached the playoffs in his three years as full-time manager of the team. Shildt replaced the dismissed Mike Matheny in the 2018 season.
With the way front office analytics departments are getting closer and closer to the day-to-day running of organizations, Shildt may not have seen it the same way the front office has. Mozeliak added that no discussion of an extension had taken place prior to Shildt’s dismissal.
Shildt’s management came under fire in the wild card game, when several bullpen maneuvers were questioned in real time by viewers and fans alike, although it was later revealed that closer Cardinals Gio Gallegos had a nail problem and had to be pulled out after the eighth inning. The Dodgers hit a two-out winning home run in the 9th.
In total, Shildt had 252-199 (0.559 winning percentage) as a manager and helped guide the Redbirds to a single NL Central crown, during his first full season as manager in 2019. The squad moved to the NLCS that season.