After four-and-a-half seasons, the Oakland A's have let go manager Bob Geren. The team announced the move in the middle of a long roadtrip that has seen the team be swept in Boston and Baltimore. The A's have hired major league veteran and former manager Bob Melvin to replace Geren for the rest of the 2011 season.
The A's entered the 2011 season with expectations of the post-season, but with nine straight losses and a rapidly expanding disabled list, the A's find themselves quickly losing contact with first-place. After four straight seasons without a winning record, Geren was let go with a career mark of 334-376 as the manager of the A's.
Geren is replaced by Melvin, who is familiar to A's fans not only as the former manager of the A's division rival Seattle Mariners, but also as the catcher for the San Francisco Giants in the mid-1980s. A Bay Area native, Melvin has a career managerial record of 493-508. He has taken one team to the post-season (2007 Arizona Diamondbacks) and he won 93 games as the Seattle Mariners' manager in 2003, finishing second to the A's that season in the AL West.
Melvin is the Diamondbacks' career leader in wins for a manager and he was most recently serving as the D-Backs' Special Assistant to the GM.
Geren's best season as the A's manager was last year, when the team finished 81-81. His tenure with Oakland was marked by a large number of injuries, as well as some player grumbling. Most recently, A's reliever Brian Fuentes complained openly about his usage out of the bullpen and former A's closer Huston Street also complained about Geren in a text message to the San Francisco Chronicle. Before Geren took over the A's in 2007, Oakland had had eight consecutive winning seasons and had been to the ALCS the previous year.
Melvin will debut as the A's skipper tonight in Chicago, where the team will be trying to get back into the win column for the first time in more than a week.