As Tampa Bay continues their search to replace recently departed manager Joe Maddon, the Rays have informed all of Maddon's former assistants that they will be retained in 2015, as reported by Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times. Topkin notes that although most new managers are typically given the opportunity to bring in some of his own coaches, Tampa Bay would like to keep the seven remaining assistants in hopes of keeping some continuity in place.
With the news of Tampa Bay wanting to maintain continuity, this could mean good news for bench coach Dave Martinez. Martinez worked side by side with Maddon for the last seven seasons, serving as Maddon's bench coach. Martinez played 16 seasons in the MLB, including with the first Tampa Bay Devil Rays team in 1998. Martinez was hired by Tampa Bay on October 11, 2007, and his seven-year stretch as Tampa Bay bench coach is the longest tenure of any bench coach in the Rays' short history.
A few other names that have been linked to the Tampa Bay job include:
Kapler played thirteen seasons in the MLB, finishing his career in Tampa Bay in 2010. Kapler has served as an analyst for Fox Sports 1 since the summer of 2013. Although Kapler does lack MLB managerial experience, he did serve as the manager for Team Israel in the 2013 World Baseball Classic qualifier.
McEwing, a former MLB utility infielder for eight years, is currently an assistant for Robin Ventura and the Chicago White Sox. McEwing just finished up his third season as Chicago's third base coach, and he also has three years of minor league managerial experience on his resume. McEwing was twice named the Carolina League Manger of the Year during his time with the Winston-Salem Dash.
Bogar just wrapped up his first season with the Texas Rangers, serving as the interim manager for the final month of the season after the resignation of Ron Washington. Bogar is another former Maddon assistant, as well as working for Terry Francona and Bobby Valentine in Boston. Bogar served as the Ranger's bench coach before taking over as interim manager.
Montoyo's experience with Tampa Bay goes all the way back to 1997, before the Devil Rays had even played a game. Montoyo's 18 seasons in the Tampa Bay system include seven division championships, and a two-time winner of Manager of the Year while managing Triple-A Durham.
While Topkin notes that as many as twenty managerial candidates have contacted Tampa Bay, the next manager will have big shoes to fill. Maddon was a two-time AL Manager of the Year, and brought plenty of success to an organization that was consistently financially strapped.