MLB: AZ Diamondbacks Extend Kevin Towers and Kirk Gibson
On Monday afternoon the Arizona Diamondbacks made it known to the media and their fans that Manager Kirk Gibson and General Manager Kevin Towers had been signed to contract extensions. The Diamondbacks’ front-office did not announce monies or years on either deal. We might speculate the reason for the signings is the front-office wanted to avoid a “lame duck” status this season.
Keep in mind last year Don Mattingly was not offered a contract extension and he was still able to take the LA Dodgers to the NL West Division title.
The contract extensions were rather unexpected because back in November both Gibson and Towers had their options for 2015 declined. No real reason was given at that time, but the feeling was that the team would need to show some major advancement in 2014 for either or both to keep their jobs after this season and be offered new contracts.
On July 1, 2010, Gibson replaced A. J. Hinch as manager on an interim basis. After the season ended he was named permanent manager and given a three-year contract with club options. His overall managerial record is 290-279 and it includes one NL West Division title and a Manager of the Year award.
Towers has been the General Manager since September of 2010 and has made some questionable trades with the departures of Trevor Bauer, Justin Upton, Kelly Johnson, Jarrod Parker, Ian Kennedy, Adam Eaton and Tyler Skaggs; while acquiring more “seasoned” players like Cody Ross, Martin Pardo, Heath Bell (since traded), Addison Reed and Mark Trumbo.
The extensions for both Gibson and Towers will hopefully stabilize this team as it heads into Spring Training for 2014 on Thursday. Gibson has the respect of the players and he did a good job of juggling some very difficult playing time challenges in 2013.
But with the Dodgers bringing back nearly their entire roster from last season’s division-title winning squad, the Giants looking to rebound from their disappointing season, the possibility of a healthy Rockies team, and an up and coming Padres squad, it could be a tough season for teams in the NL West.
Only time will tell if keeping Gibson and Towers will work-out, but here is hoping for a great Diamondbacks 2014 season.
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