Bob Melvin

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Robert Paul Melvin

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Biographical Information[edit]

As a player, Bob Melvin was best known for his spells as a strong defensive catcher with the San Francisco Giants and the Baltimore Orioles. He later became a major league manager.

After his playing career ended, Melvin spent some time as a scout and worked in the Milwaukee Brewers front office before moving to the dugout. He was a Brewers coach in 1999, and then followed skipper Phil Garner to the Detroit Tigers in 2000. He was a member of the Arizona Diamondbacks coaching staff the next two seasons, 2001 and 2002 before taking over as Seattle Mariners manager in 2003.

After two years at the helm of the Mariners, Melvin joined the Arizona Diamondbacks as their skipper for the 2005 season. He was taking over a team that had lost 108 games as the veterans who had contributed to Arizona's World Series title in 2001 had retired or left, with the team's farm system too barren to replace them adequately. Melvin set out to rebuild the team and in 2007, he led a young Diamondbacks team to a NL West Division title as well as the best record in the National League, a remarkable feat considering that his team allowed more runs than it scored over the season. However, success was short-lived. After a red hot start, the D-Backs faded badly down the stretch in 2008 and finished barely above .500. Then in 2009, the team started slowly and was already 8 1/2 games out of first when Melvin was fired on May 7th. One of the main criticisms against him was that Arizona's many young players had failed to develop under his leadership and he was replaced by A.J. Hinch, who lacked coaching or managerial experience but had been Vice-President in charge of player development.

Melvin was re-hired by the Diamondbacks in May of 2011 for a third stint with the organization, this time as a special assistant to team President Derrick Hall. He did not stay long in the job, as just a month later, on June 9, 2011, he was hired as skipper of the Oakland Athletics, replacing the fired Bob Geren. He turned things completely around for the A's in 2012, as they emerged completely out of nowhere to challenge the heavily-favored Texas Rangers for the AL West title, overtaking them in the season's last days. However, they were defeated by the Detroit Tigers in the ALDS. The scenario repeated exactly in 2013, even though the A's were now expected to be competitive, down to the elimination at the hands of the Tigers in a tightly-fought ALDS. In 2014, the A's were the best team in the majors during the first half and made a number of moves to acquire additional pitching in order to get past the Division Series bump. The strategy did not work, however, as the offense went dead in August, and the A's began to plummet, eventually only landing a wild card slot on the final day of the season, and by a single game. They had to play on the road to meet the Kansas City Royals in the Wild Card Game but lost a wild and crazy contest, 9-8, in 12 innings to make another early exit from the postseason.

The A's were expected to contend again in 2015 in spite of making a flurry of moves in the off-season, but the new team never jelled and spent more time fighting to get out of the cellar than threatening to return to the postseason. In spite of the disappointing season, the A's expressed confidence in their manager, signing him to a two-year contract extension on September 9th. GM Billy Beane explained the decision to extend him thus: "By the way, not all the players I gave you were good," an acknowledgment that some of the off-season moves had been ill-inspired. 2016 and 2017 were rebuilding years, though, with the A's never in contention. Melvin was successful in bringing along a number of young players who did well, building a foundation for the future. The A's liked how he handled that difficult patch and at the end of 2017 gave him another two-year contract extension. The building work paid off as soon as 2018, as after an indifferent start, the A's suddenly got hot and never relented, passing the Seattle Mariners, who had got off to an excellent start and giving the first-place Houston Astros a scare before settling on a wild card slot. While the team lost the Wild Card Game to the 100-win New York Yankees, Melvin was rewarded for leading them that far by winning his third Manager of the Year title.

After the 2021 season, Melvin was hired away by the San Diego Padres to be their manager in 2022. He was given a three-year contract. In his first two games managing the Padres, Melvin was twice faced with the decision to remove his starting pitcher after he had not given up a hit - six innings in the case of Yu Darvish on Opening Day, April 7th, and 7 for Sean Manaea the next day. There was not the huge amount of controversy such decisions usually generate as both pitchers were working on a strict pitch count, a result of the abbreviated spring training caused by the 2021-2022 lockout.

Melvin's main teammates were Cal Ripken, Will Clark, Randy Milligan, Robby Thompson, Gregg Olson, Bob Brenly, Joe Orsulak, Candy Maldonado, Mickey Tettleton and Jose Uribe.

Notable Achievements[edit]

  • 3-time Manager of the Year Award (2007/NL, 2012/AL & 2018/AL)
  • Division Titles: 4 (2007, 2012, 2013 & 2020)
  • Other Postseason Appearances: 3 (2014, 2018 & 2019 - Wild Card)

Preceded by
Lou Piniella
Seattle Mariners Manager
Succeeded by
Mike Hargrove
Preceded by
Al Pedrique
Arizona Diamondbacks Manager
Succeeded by
A.J. Hinch
Preceded by
Bob Geren
Oakland Athletics Manager
Succeeded by
Mark Kotsay
Preceded by
Jayce Tingler
San Diego Padres Manager
Succeeded by

Year-By-Year Managerial Record[edit]

Year Team League Record Finish Organization Playoffs Notes
2003 Seattle Mariners American League 87-75 2nd Seattle Mariners
2004 Seattle Mariners American League 63-99 4th Seattle Mariners
2005 Arizona Diamondbacks National League 77-85 2nd Arizona Diamondbacks
2006 Arizona Diamondbacks National League 76-86 4th Arizona Diamondbacks
2007 Arizona Diamondbacks National League 90-72 1st Arizona Diamondbacks Lost NLCS
2008 Arizona Diamondbacks National League 82-80 2nd Arizona Diamondbacks
2009 Arizona Diamondbacks National League 12-17 -- Arizona Diamondbacks replaced by A.J. Hinch on May 7
2011 Oakland Athletics American League 47-52 3rd Oakland Athletics replaced Bob Geren (27-36) on June 9
2012 Oakland Athletics American League 94-68 1st Oakland Athletics Lost ALDS
2013 Oakland Athletics American League 96-66 1st Oakland Athletics Lost ALDS
2014 Oakland Athletics American League 88-74 2nd Oakland Athletics Lost Wild Card Game
2015 Oakland Athletics American League 68-94 5th Oakland Athletics
2016 Oakland Athletics American League 69-93 5th Oakland Athletics
2017 Oakland Athletics American League 75-87 5th Oakland Athletics
2018 Oakland Athletics American League 97-65 2nd Oakland Athletics Lost Wild Card Game
2019 Oakland Athletics American League 97-65 2nd Oakland Athletics Lost Wild Card Game
2020 Oakland Athletics American League 36-24 1st Oakland Athletics Lost ALDS
2021 Oakland Athletics American League 86-76 3rd Oakland Athletics
2022 San Diego Padres National League San Diego Padres

Further Reading[edit]

  • AJ Cassavell: "Padres to hire A's Melvin as skipper (sources)",, October 28, 2021. [1]
  • AJ Cassavell: "San Diego the place to be for skipper Melvin", mlb,.com, November 1, 2021. [2]
  • AJ Cassavell: "No second thoughts from Melvin after lifting 2 pitchers amid no-hitters",, April 9, 2022. [3]
  • Anthony Castrovince: "Melvin wins 3rd Manager Award, Snitker his first",, November 13, 2018. [4]
  • Jorge L. Ortiz: "A's manager Bob Melvin won't be fall guy for terrible season", USA Today Sports, September 9, 2015. [5]

Related Sites[edit]