Padres' Bud Black, Twins' Ron Gardenhire win Manager of Year awards
Ron Gardenhire, who led the Minnesota Twins to the American League playoffs despite losing his closer for the entire season and his cleanup hitter for half the season, and Bud Black, whose San Diego Padres remained alive in the National League West until the final day of the regular season, were honored Wednesday as managers of the year.
Black edged Dusty Baker of the Cincinnati Reds by one point in the National League voting. Black got 16 of 32 first-place votes and 104 overall points; Baker got 13 first-place votes and 103 overall points. Baker led the Reds to their first playoff berth since 1995, but they were expected to contend. The Padres were widely projected as a last-place team.
The voting closed at the end of the regular season. Bruce Bochy of the World Series champion San Francisco Giants finished third, followed in order by Atlanta's Bobby Cox, Philadelphia's Charlie Manuel and Houston's Brad Mills.
Black, hired to manage the Padres after serving as the Angels' pitching coach, becomes the second alumnus of Mike Scioscia's staff to win a manager of the year award. Joe Maddon of the Tampa Bay Rays, formerly the Angels' bench coach, won the American League Manager of the Year award in 2008.
Gardenhire, who won the American League award for the first time after five second-place finishes, led the Twins to a 94-win season despite injuries to closer Joe Nathan and first baseman Justin Morneau. Gardenhire got 16 of 28 first-place votes and 108 overall points.
Ron Washington, who led the Texas Rangers to their first World Series, got 10 first-place votes and 81 total points. Maddon finished third, followed by Terry Francona of Boston, Cito Gaston of Toronto and Joe Girardi of the New York Yankees.
-- Bill Shaikin