The Colorado Rockies have decided who will lead their team into next season, settling on former major league shortstop Walt Weiss as the sixth manager in franchise history.
Denver Post reporter Troy Renck had the news:
Weiss has been named Rockies manager.— Troy Renck (@TroyRenck) November 8, 2012
Weiss beat out Matt Williams, Tom Runnells and Jason Giambi to become Jim Tracy's replacement for next season. He has connections to the team, having played shortstop for Colorado from 1994 to 1997 and serving in the front office for several years thereafter.
According to the Associated Press (via Sports Illustrated), Weiss had been serving as the varsity baseball coach at Regis Jesuit High School in Denver. Senior president of major league operations Bill Geivett mentions in the report that, "He would take trips in the minor leagues. He was always around with the major league club at home, as well. I know Walt pretty well."
Familiarity is a good thing, especially for a team coming off of a tremendously disappointing season. Despite finishing in the top 10 of most major offensive categories, the Rockies lost 98 games. A pitching staff that ranked at the bottom of the league in almost every conceivable area doomed the team, giving away gobs of close games.
Weiss is going to face a tough road ahead. Colorado will receive production from its offense led by Troy Tulowitzki and Carlos Gonzalez, but the pitching staff is still going to be inexperienced. He will have to hope guys like Drew Pomeranz, Christian Friedrich and a collection of veterans step up their games.
Adding a former player seemed like the way Colorado wanted to go from the very beginning. Weiss was always a heady player with excellent instincts and his even-keel demeanor should mesh well with this underachieving squad.
If Weiss does his job and the pitchers get back to throwing at least mediocre baseball, this team will be back to respectable status sooner rather than later.