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Tigers Fire Entire AA Staff

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Good riddance.

To bad rubbish. I think the pitching coach was good according to Micro.... but other than that it is a good move to get rid of them.

Interesting note that Maybin is expected to play in AA. I wonder if that means start in AA or just play there eventually.

Starting him there would be a very interesting and good development.

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From the Erie Diary thread:

Dyer ending to season

Tigers fire Erie manager, staff after rough year

By Ron Leonardi

ron.leonardi@timesnews.com

Duffy Dyer told his wife Sunday that he thought his chances of being retained as SeaWolves manager after this season were 50-50.

Those odds were a long shot at best.

The Detroit Tigers fired the Dyer, 61, hitting instructor Pete Incaviglia and pitching coach Mike Caldwell Monday after the club finishedits season with a 5-4, 10-inning loss to the Akron Aeros at Jerry Uht Park.

Their firing comes on the heels of a 60-81 record and a second consecutive last-place finish in the Eastern League's Southern Division. Dyer's 2005 team finished 63-79 and ended that season by losing 28 of its last 35 games.

Glenn Ezell, the Detroit Tigers' director of player development, notified Dyer and his staff of their firing in Dyer's office shortly after Monday's game.

"I don't believe we as an organization here in Erie accomplished what we needed to accomplish this year," Ezell said.

Asked what he felt the club needed to accomplish under Dyer, Ezell said, "That's it for right now."

Ezell said he would address questions about Dyer and his staff at a later date. Incaviglia, 42, and Caldwell, 57, each served in their respective positions the past three seasons.

The SeaWolves were 123-160 in Dyer's two years as manager. Erie's 60-81 record is the third-worst single-season record since the franchise began Double-A play in 1999.

"They didn't give me any reasons for the firing, but it's because we didn't win as many games, I guess, and because the players didn't do as well as they anticipated they would do," Dyer said. "They thought we didn't develop well enough, That's probably the reason I got fired, because they didn't make any adjustments, I would assume. I can't blame them. The record here for two years was terrible, so I'll move on."

Dyer said he had been retaining hope of keeping his job beyond this season.

"I thought we all might be back," Dyer said. "My wife and I were talking about it last night (Sunday). I said I really can't read this one. I admit I was shocked when Ezell walked into the office. I didn't know he was here. As soon as he walked in, I was pretty sure what was going to happen."

Fielding a team loaded with Double-A rookies, the SeaWolves never got untracked this season.

The SeaWolves were hampered by inconsistency at the plate, were a fundamentally inconsistent and unsound team and showed little development as the season progressed.

"He definitely had trouble communicating with the guys," SeaWolves designated hitter Kurt Airoso said. "He definitely has his own style. Was it right for this team? I don't know. Some people say no. The younger players didn't connect with him, but there are a lot of managers like that where you're not going to connect with them. They're not there to be your buddy. They're there to try and help the team win. From the manager to the trainer to me, everybody, we didn't win. You can't blame it all on him or any one person. It was us together. We didn't win."

The SeaWolves began the season with 12 Double-A rookies on their roster, many of whom had outstanding seasons a year ago leading Single-A Lakeland to an 85-47 record and the Florida State League regular-season championship.

"We all came in here together - a lot of guys who played at Oneonta, West Michigan and Lakeland - and we're not used to having a losing season," SeaWolves first baseman Kelly Hunt said. "This is a first for us. It was a long year and it wasn't fun losing a whole lot. Time will tell if we come back strong next year and prove that it made us tougher, but right now it's hard to tell."

After a rough start, Erie seemed to be turning its season around when it won nine straight games in late May.

However, after evening their record at 27-27 on June 2, the SeaWolves took a nosedive and never recovered, going 33-54 the remainder of the season.

"Baseball is a game of failure and you have to fail before you learn and become a good player," Airoso said. "A lot of these guys never faced failure before. Now they have and hopefully they'll learn from that and work on their shortcomings during the offseason and be better players next year."

Ezell left the SeaWolves' clubhouse immediately after delivering the news to Dyer and his staff. While that meeting was taking place, players scurried to pack their belongings in anticipation of going home.

Dyer said his farewell to several players, then addressed the media.

"I didn't ask him why I got fired," Dyer said. "I just said, 'Thank you, it was a great opportunity for me and sorry that I disappointed you."'

Dyer said he and Ezell parted on good terms.

"They're good people and it's a great organization," Dyer said. "I enjoyed my two years with them. I wish I could have been here longer. I'm happy to see what they're doing at the big league level. I think they'll turn it around here real soon because I hear there are some good kids in (low Single-A West Michigan) and that. I imagine a lot of the kids who struggled a little bit here this year will be back and should do better their second year here. I think things are looking up."

Dyer said he would like to remain in baseball for a few more years in some capacity, preferably managing or coaching.

"I'm not ready to quit yet," Dyer said. "I still feel physically good. Financially, I could retire and do all right. I'm only going to work because I want to work. I don't like the fact that I have to go home and start making phone calls and looking for a job. That's not fun. I would like to get with an organization and stay there a while."

RON LEONARDI can be reached at 870-1680 or by e-mail.

http://www.goerie.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20060905/BASEBALL01/609050380/-1/BASEBALL

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One might wonder if they will move the AA affiliate to Grand Rapids. There have mumblings about same.

I think they have a contract with Erie for the next season. Also it would be a bit of a travel expense to much of the AA league with Akron, Ohio being the closest team to Grand Rapids.

Also there is a question of the facilities in Grand Rapids. At least in the past the park is terrible for hitters. The organization may want further changes to that before making such a move.

The attendance figures for WM seem like they would be enough to handle a AA team at first glance.

Who knows what will happen. This is just my opinion on the issue and I am obviously far from in charge.

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The axing of Mike Caldwell, who had seen numerous pitchers continue to make strides under him (Vasquez, DLC, Rogers, Larrison, etc.) is a little perplexing, but I suppose it's more guilt by association.

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One might wonder if they will move the AA affiliate to Grand Rapids. There have mumblings about same.

If they do move, the will have to break there contract with Erie which I believe was extended before the season started this, but I may be wrong.

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GR would love the AA franchise, but I know we already have a schedule set for Low A for 2007. It could be something down the road in 08 or beyond. I have heard our lighting system would have to be changed, but that may be the only MAJOR item to get the AA team.

It would be nice for the Tiger organization to have the AA and the AAA within a few hours of Detroit.

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Good news for Walbeck and the system.

Goods news for Walbeck or Rojas either man would be a plus for Erie, because rumor still has it Rojas won't be back as L-Tigers manager next year, so if Rojas is destined for Erie, wouldn't mine to see if Walbeck follows most of his players to Lakeland next year.

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Personally, I think Rojas should get the job. I really like what I've seen from him as a manager. Though, they may give it to Walbeck because he's threatening to leave. IMO he shouldn't be rewarded for that. You don't demand promotions and threaten to leave if they don't give them to you. He should be satisfied with moving up one level. I don't want to see Rojas tossed aside because of that. We'll see...

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Personally, I think Rojas should get the job. I really like what I've seen from him as a manager. Though, they may give it to Walbeck because he's threatening to leave. IMO he shouldn't be rewarded for that. You don't demand promotions and threaten to leave if they don't give them to you. He should be satisfied with moving up one level. I don't want to see Rojas tossed aside because of that. We'll see...

Matt Walbeck was misrepresented in that "threat." All he said was that he was not returning to WM next year, that it was time to move up.

I can't speak for Rojas. I have not seen him manage. I can only say that Matt Walbeck is going to make a wonderful manager. I like what I have seen in Matt and believe him to be deserving of a promotion (and of course root for AA). I'm sure both are very deserving of a promotion. I really hope we don't lose Walbeck to another organization. I think that would be a tragedy.

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I think if both are going to leave if they do not get promotions than the best solution is Walbeck to Lakeland and Rojas to Erie.

I really don't know much about either manager. But that would seem to be the natural progression of things.

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I'll completely co-sign this move. You can't have that many hitters flame out and not blame the staff. A few prospects fall to the wasteside(wayside??) and it's nothing out of the ordinary and to be expected, but the whole line-up means something was wrong with the coaching.

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One might wonder if they will move the AA affiliate to Grand Rapids. There have mumblings about same.

Maybe it would be the chance GR needs to rectify building a baseball stadium downtown. I can tell ya a lot of the city leaders kicked themselves in the pants over that. I doubt that would happen though.

Also, would the Tigers possible look at affiliating with Midland if they chose GR?

Heh all I can say is it'd be nice to see Maybin twice (and maybe Walbeck too..)

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I commented a few years back how I thought Incaviglia was a poor choice. His philosophy: hit the first fastball. That's not a good way to teach young hitters. As a matter of fact, it's probably the worst way.

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All he said was that he was not returning to WM next year, that it was time to move up.

How is this not a threat? I'm sure he said it in a nice way, but what he's saying is "promote me or I'm leaving". Now, I don't blame him for wanting a promotion, he cetainly deserves it. I just hope he doesn't demand a AA position, bypassing Rojas at High-A.

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I commented a few years back how I thought Incaviglia was a poor choice. His philosophy: hit the first fastball. That's not a good way to teach young hitters. As a matter of fact, it's probably the worst way.

I don't doubt you, but where did you hear this? If I remember right, Pete was not a very good fastball hitter. Somehow he hit offspeed stuff much better. So it seems like an odd philosophy for someone like him.

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How is this not a threat? I'm sure he said it in a nice way, but what he's saying is "promote me or I'm leaving". Now, I don't blame him for wanting a promotion, he cetainly deserves it. I just hope he doesn't demand a AA position, bypassing Rojas at High-A.

All he is saying is that he is opening himself up, and looking for opportunities to move up. He believes it is time for him to move up, whether or not it is within the Tigers organization. Nowhere has he demanded AA, but I believe him to be worthy of it. I do not see anything wrong with him seeking to move up after 3 seasons of tremendous success. I remember last season he told me (along with a few others) that he felt he needed one more season at WM, and then he felt he would be ready to move up. This is a man who knows his capability, and has proven himself to be an excellent teacher, leader and manager. He deserves a promotion whereever that may be. Forgive me for hoping that will be at AA

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How is this not a threat? I'm sure he said it in a nice way, but what he's saying is "promote me or I'm leaving". Now, I don't blame him for wanting a promotion, he cetainly deserves it. I just hope he doesn't demand a AA position, bypassing Rojas at High-A.

I think with his resume having been added to by this years awards, etc, any team would be glad to get him and possibly closer to his home in California....think his record speaks for itself....he may have some choices to make in the off-season...

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And yet he was bypassed 2 years ago when Lakeland had an opening. I think he's done a good job, don't get me wrong. But I think it would be odd for them to not allow their managers and coaches follow a natural progression. It would be a bit of a slap in the face to Rojas if Matt trumped him.

It doesn't really matter one way or the other. I just hope Matt's threatening to leave doesn't influence their decision.

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All he is saying is that he is opening himself up, and looking for opportunities to move up. He believes it is time for him to move up, whether or not it is within the Tigers organization. Nowhere has he demanded AA, but I believe him to be worthy of it. I do not see anything wrong with him seeking to move up after 3 seasons of tremendous success. I remember last season he told me (along with a few others) that he felt he needed one more season at WM, and then he felt he would be ready to move up. This is a man who knows his capability, and has proven himself to be an excellent teacher, leader and manager. He deserves a promotion whereever that may be. Forgive me for hoping that will be at AA

Where did I say he didn't deserve it? My point is that both guys deserve it and one shouldn't be jumping over the other just because he threatens to leave. That isn't good business. He had no business making that public and forcing the organization to look like the "bad guys" if they don't promote him. Its just poor business.

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