While we had our own opinions on who would make a great contender for the new Tigers manager when Brad Ausmus leaves at the end of this season, but rumor has it Al Avila might have his own favorite already. According of Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports, the manager search may be focusing on Phil Nevin.
Nevin played for the Tigers from 1995-97, and in 2010 took over as manager of the Erie SeaWolves — a role previously filled by Tom Brookens. After a season with the SeaWolves he went on to manage the Tigers’ Triple-A affiliate Toledo Mud Hens, but was fired in 2013 when he failed to produce winning results.
He has since worked with the Triple-A Reno Aces, and at one point interviewed for the manager role for the Houston Astros. For the 2017 season he was the third base coach for the San Francisco Giants.
In his playing career Nevin was a utility man who played several positions, and in his 12 years hit a .270/.343/.472 line. As a manager his Triple-A record over six seasons is 518-563. He has only had two seasons over .500, both with the Reno Aces. In the past he has interviewed for major league jobs not only with Houston, but also the Nationals, Marlins, Padres, and Diamondbacks.
It is Al Avila’s familiarity with Nevin, and Nevin’s experience within the Tigers’ organizations that are likely making him such a “strong candidate” for the role.
While this is by no means a done deal and the interviews are ongoing and extensive, Nevin is certainly one name to keep an eye on over the coming month as the search narrows.
Lots of other names are being tossed around for the manager position, and all current coaches are interviewing, according to Wednesday’s Fox Sports broadcast, meaning Lloyd McClendon, Omar Vizquel, and Dave Clark will all get a chance to state their cases.