It’s wild what a rough stretch of baseball can do. For the Toronto Blue Jays, some brutal baseball, particularly against American League East opponents, has some wondering if a change needs to be made at the top for the club to improve its World Series odds.
And with Donnie Baseball himself, Don Mattingly, waiting in the wings as the Blue Jays’ bench coach, there is an opportunity for Toronto to make a transition to a more experienced manager right away.
If the Blue Jays do decide to pull the trigger and move onto Mattingly, when will it happen? Will it be next week? At the All-Star break? Down the stretch? Luckily for us, an online sportsbook has posted MLB odds to help answer that very question.
When will Don Mattingly become manager of the Blue Jays?
Odds courtesy of Sports Interaction, as of May 24, 2023.
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The Blue Jays hired Mattingly to be their bench coach this offseason, bringing in an experienced voice to help first-time manager John Schneider.
As a player, Mattingly was a six-time All-Star and nine-time Gold Glove winner during his career entirely spent with the New York Yankees. His transition to managing looked seamless when he took over the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2011.
Mattingly led the Dodgers to three straight division titles before parting ways following the 2015 season. He then helped mentor a young and rebuilding Marlins team from 2016 to 2022, winning National League Manager of the Year in the pandemic-shortened 2020 season thanks to a surprise postseason appearance from the Fish.
Mattingly is an old-school leader who loves the game of baseball and already has the respect of the Blue Jays' young core. He has reportedly already spent a lot of time working at first with Vladimir Guerrero Jr. and is excited to share his wisdom throughout the clubhouse.
Basically, he’s a perfect fit for this Blue Jays team. And the reason they hired him in the first place was to help take that next step, which is to win the World Series.
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When will Jays kick Schneider to the curb?
The Blue Jays have a winning record but the club certainly hasn’t lived up to expectations in what looks like one of the most competitive divisions baseball has seen in years. Toronto’s window to win is now, so the pressure is on.
Odds are now posted about when Mattingly will take over for Schneider. The favorite is during the offseason at +200, and for this market that would be my best bet. Even with the early struggles, I think it's highly unlikely the Blue Jays would fire another manager mid-season after doing so with Charlie Montoyo last July. It’s important to remember it's still just May, and that all teams have their ups and downs during a long 162-game season. Plus, Schneider was the man who righted the ship last year, leading the team to a 92-win campaign and a postseason berth.
Schneider also has the support of the clubhouse. He’s been around a lot of these players for years, particularly Vladdy, and Bo Bichette, when he was their manager in Double-A.
This team is also too talented to go through too many bad stretches as they did in mid-May, so it’s unlikely that things will go poorly enough for Schneider to get fired mid-season. However, if that did happen, changes tend to occur around the All-Star break, which is the second favorite on the board at +400.
I can personally see a push for another managerial change this offseason if the little mistakes, like Schneider accidentally pulling Alek Manoah from a game, continue to pile up. Blue Jays fans - and bettors - will be watching closely.