Bud Black will take his expertise in pitching to the hitter friendly confines of Coors Field.
Black is highly regarded as being a guru when it comes to pitching. A reliable source has said that he was hired over the weekend by the Colorado Rockies to be their next manager. The person did not want his or her name used since the team has yet to announce its decision.
A Monday news conference was scheduled by the Rockies to introduce a new manager, but the team statement did not say whom the team has chosen.
Black will take the place of Walt Weiss, who resigned in October at the time his contract ended following four years as the Colorado manager. Last season, Colorado was 75-87, which was its best record in 6 seasons.
Black, who is 59, managed close to nine seasons with the San Diego Padres prior to being fired in June of 2015. While with the Padres, he was 649-713 and was voted in 2010 as the NL Manager of the Year. That season San Diego was 90-72, which was the most wins since the team won 98 during the 1998 season.
Last season, Black was nearly hired by Washington before talks were broken off and the Nationals hired Dusty Baker.
Following a career in the majors of over 15 seasons pitching, Black took the pitching coach job for the Los Angeles Angels.
He will bring a great deal of experience to the Rockies, a team that has struggled to get opponents out in the thin air of Denver which is located one mile above sea level.
Colorado has an ERA of 4.91 during this last season, which was tied for 13th with Cincinnati out of the 15 teams in the National League. Arizona at 5.09 was the only NL club with a worse team ERA.
However, the Rockies have a great deal of young talent in their starting rotation. Jon Gray leads a group of talented hurlers, while Tyler Chatwood with a 1.69 ERA on the road led the majors. Chad Bettis as well as Tyler Anderson also pitched well last season.
One of Black’s biggest challenges is to shore up a bullpen that was shaky at best. Last season it blew 28 save opportunities. Colorado was 24-36 in games that were decided by two runs or less.
Black has been lauded for how he ran the bullpens for both the Angels and the Padres.