Jim Leyland insisted throughout the latter part of the season that there would be a time and a place to discuss his managing future.
That moment came Tuesday – when the Detroit Tigers announced Leyland would be back in 2013 with a one-year contract extension.
“I really don’t know why this is such a shock to everybody, because we told everybody that we weren’t going to talk about this until after the season,” Leyland said. “It’s not even 48 hours and it’s done. I think it was pretty much exactly like we had planned it.”
The Tigers and their manager quickly ended any remaining speculation about his status, just two days after Detroit was swept by the San Francisco Giants in the World Series. Leyland was managing on a one-year deal this year as well, and he seems comfortable taking his future year by year at this point in his career.
Leyland, 67, leads active managers with 1,676 wins, a total that puts him 15th on the career list. Next season will be his 22nd as a major league manager and his eighth in Detroit. He’s led the Tigers to the postseason three times and the World Series twice.
Despite the poor showing in the World Series, it was a happy enough ending for Leyland, who is well aware of the occasional criticism from fans and talk-show callers when things aren’t going well.
“Probably ‘Tom in Royal Oak’ isn’t too happy right now, but that’s OK.” Leyland said. “That’s just the way it goes. I’m sorry Tom, but I’m back.”
Baltimore shortstop J.J. Hardy won a Gold Glove, putting him among a group of nine players honored for the first time for their fielding excellence.
Pittsburgh center fielder Andrew McCutchen, San Diego third baseman Chase Headley and Oakland right fielder Josh Reddick also were first-time selections.
The other first-time winners in the National League were Washington first baseman Adam LaRoche, Chicago Cubs second baseman Darwin Barney and Atlanta right fielder Jason Heyward.
Clearing the bases
Pitcher Jake Peavy and the Chicago White Sox agreed to a $29 million, two-year contract. … Detroit exercised a $6 million option on shortstop Jhonny Peralta and a $3.5 million on reliever Octavio Dotel. … The Los Angeles Dodgers brought back Brandon League, re-signing their closer to a three-year deal. League, acquired from the Seattle Mariners at the July trade deadline, went 2-1 with six saves and a 2.30 ERA in 28 appearances with Los Angeles.