Tigers tap Gardenhire as new manager

AFP
Former manager Ron Gardenhire of the Minnesota Twins was the 2010 AL Manager of the Year and was the runner-up on five occasions, but was sacked after four straight seasons of 90 or more defeats (AFP Photo/Hannah Foslien)

Former manager Ron Gardenhire of the Minnesota Twins was the 2010 AL Manager of the Year and was the runner-up on five occasions, but was sacked after four straight seasons of 90 or more defeats

Former manager Ron Gardenhire of the Minnesota Twins was the 2010 AL Manager of the Year and was the runner-up on five occasions, but was sacked after four straight seasons of 90 or more defeats (AFP Photo/Hannah Foslien)

Los Angeles (AFP) - The Detroit Tigers are turning to an old foe in their rebuilding bid, naming former Minnesota Twins manager Ron Gardenhire as their new manager on Friday.

Gardenhire, who turns 60 on Tuesday, spent 13 seasons, from 2004-2014 managing the Twins -- the Tigers American League Central division rivals.

He compiled a 1,068-1,039 record with the Twins and is one of 10 managers in baseball history to win 1,000 or more games with a single club. He was the 2010 AL Manager of the Year and was the runner-up on five occasions, but was sacked after four straight seasons of 90 or more defeats.

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He spent 2017 as bench coach for the Arizona Diamondbacks.

But the Tigers are counting on his ability to develop talent as they enter a rebuilding phase after trading ace pitcher Justin Verlander and outfielders J.D. Martinez and Justin Upton in 2017.

"After an extensive search, we are confident 'Gardy' is the right person to lead our ballclub in our pursuit of World Series championships," general manager Al Avila said in a statement. "Ron has extensive managerial experience at the major league level and has a proven track record of player development."

Gardenhire said he "couldn't be more thrilled" after inking a three-year contract with the Tigers.

"After managing against the Tigers for so many years, I know first-hand what a great baseball town Detroit is and that the fans here are some of the most passionate in all of sports," he said.

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