NOVEMBER 14, 2011
In a surprise turn of events, the Cardinals have chosen Mike Matheny as their manager for the 2012 season. The former Cardinals catcher was one of six potential candidates for the position, which included the likes of Terry Francona, former manager of the Boston Red Sox, Chris Maloney, manager of the Memphis Redbirds, and the Cardinals current third base coach Jose Oquendo. Matheny, the least experienced of those in contention for the position will be the youngest manager in the majors. That lack of experience does not appear to be an issue for the Cardinals, per Joe Strauss of the St. Louis Post Dispatch:
Cardinals chairman Bill DeWitt Jr. and Mozeliak quickly assured him they were placing a premium on leadership, not experience.
While Jose Oquendo was a potential runner-up for the role, it is believed that the Cardinals and Matheny wish to retain him on the staff. Per Strauss again:
It isn’t known when Matheny will cement his coaching staff. When Mozeliak contacted Oquendo, he told the long-time Cardinals coach that Matheny would soon be in contact with him.
As for Oquendo, he has already expressed his desire to remain in his current role and believes his baseball connections will be an asset. Per Strauss:
“He’ll do as much as he can to be as ready as he can for the season. I think he’ll bring people he knows can help him a lot. He’s home. People know him real well and like him. The core guys on the team already know what he’s all about.”
AUGUST 17, 2018
While the Cardinals third base coach finds himself in a similar position as he was nearly seven years ago, this time around, Jose Oquendo has something else in mind. When the manager position was vacant on the Cardinals before, Oquendo was seen as something as a front-runner the job. This time around many were again surprised when the Cardinals chose Mike Shildt as the interim manager instead of the long-time third base coach. Someone that was not surprised? Jose Oquendo. Per Ben Frederickson of the St. Louis Post Dispatch:
“I already told Mo, even before spring training, when we met about me coming back, that I wasn’t going to think about managing,” Oquendo said. “I told Mike Matheny that. Don’t worry about me trying to get a job. I’m not looking for that.”
Per Frederickson, Oquendo is firmly Team Shildt for manager of the 2019 Cardinals. In fact, he does not think they should wait until 2019 to make it official:
“I think the Cardinals have the right guy in Mike,” Oquendo said. “I think, to me, in my opinion, they should decide now and make him the manager. He’s a real good one. I don’t think they should miss him.”
Managers have come and gone, but Jose Oquendo remains at third base. He thinks the Cardinals next manager should be their current one.
Hard to argue with that.
The full story mentions Oquendo’s future plans and has some nice quotes from Mike Shildt on how Oquendo has helped him. Check it out here.
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