Dave Jauss began his managerial career in the Montreal Expos system, coaching one year apiece at the rookie ball, Single-A, and Double-A levels. He was named the Eastern League’s Manager of the Year in 1994, when he lead the Harrisburg Senators to an 88-51 record, best in the league. Jauss spent time as a coordinator for the Orioles before jumping to the Red Sox, serving as their first base coach from 1997-99. He stayed in the Red Sox organization for ten years, becoming the Dodgers bench coach in 2006-07 under Grady Little, and then the Orioles bench coach from 2008-09 under Dave Trembley. Jauss served as the Mets bench coach this season under Jerry Manuel. This all comes out to a 41 on the managerial experience scale, right around the Hale-Oberkfell range — I guess 40 is the amount of experience you need to become a serious managerial candidate. This is weird, because I just made up this scale last night.
As a player, Jauss never played above the college level. He jumped directly from playing college baseball to coaching college baseball at the age of twenty-one. Jerry Manuel, then field coordinator for the Montreal Expos, hired Jauss as a minor league manager back in the 1988, beginning his career in professional baseball. Jauss is probably the worst player among all the managerial candidates.
It is difficult to establish the managerial style of Jauss. The last team he managed was the 1994 Double-A Harrisburg Senators: Jauss’ squad issued just 6 intentional passes all season (the league median was about 19), but they bunted a decent amount and made plenty of outs on the base paths. This gets a 5 on the strategy scale, but it’s based on a minor league team from sixteen years ago. It’s a really loose 5. He might be adaptable, or he might not.
As for his temperament, Jauss has possibly been banned from the Dominican winter league for the next two seasons. Apparently — and this is based on some iffy Google translations — Jauss bumped an umpire, refused to leave the field, and then chased after said umpire after being ejected for ordering a beaning in a game last winter. The commissioner of the league suspended Jauss for the 2010-11 and 2011-12 seasons, which is probably reasonable. If you read Spanish, you can see for yourself. I guess this makes him fiery. (Having written about managers all day, the proper spelling of fiery is really beginning to bug me. Why is it spelled that way? Why not firey?)
And as you might have seen by now, Jauss did an interesting interview with Baseball Prospectus last winter. Talking about motivating players: “It’s not new tricks. It’s the basic fundamentals. The same basic fundamentals string all the way from the high-school level to the big leagues. At each successive level, the execution of those fundamentals has to be sharper, because the game is faster. But if a player is ready for that level, he’s capable of it. And every club drills. They drill in different ways— not every club has their second baseman and shortstop out at 4 p.m., when they’re going to stretch at 4:15 p.m., taking extra ground balls. Not every team has their catchers throwing at 2 p.m., but they all get it done somewhere or another. The drilling is done everywhere. However, certain drilling makes you more successful. Certain venues allow players to execute better. Certain confidence-building things allow players to execute better. Certain motivational things allow players to execute better.”
I like that Jauss has been a bench coach for five years; I don’t like that he’s been a bench coach under Grady Little, Dave Trembley, and Jerry Manuel. Those are three scary, scary names. While Jauss has a good amount of experience, having coached baseball since he was 21-years-old, given the choice between Jauss, Hale, and Oberkfell, I would take Hale. Jauss hasn’t managed a professional American team in sixteen years, and that should be a knock.
Managerial Odds: 10 to 1. Jauss doesn’t have a significant advantage in experience over Hale, the candidate he’s most comparable to, and I believe Hale’s resume is more impressive overall.