Multiple sources are currently reporting that the Detroit Tigers will announce that manager Jim Leyland will not be returning to the club next year. It is not clear whether or not he is retiring or just moving on to another job. Leyland will be 69 years old before next season. It is a bit of a surprising move since the Tigers made it to the World Series last year and the ALCS this year.
Leyland will forever hold a special place in the heart of Marlins fans as he provided Miami with their first World Series in 1997. He only coached the Marlins for 2 years, as he left in 1998 after then owner Wayne Huizenga dismantled the team following their World Series win. That year he went 54-108, the most losses in franchise history, although certainly not to be blamed on him.
Former Marlins General Manager Dave Dombrowski took the helm in Detroit in 2001 and I would credit him in large part for bringing in Leyland and reuniting with his former manager, from Miami, in 2005. The two of them obviously work well together and Dombrowski had assembled quite a team for Leyland the past couple of years.
I have to believe that Leyland will be retiring if he is choosing to no longer coach Detroit. He played for them and always seemed like a Detroit guy. It is hard to believe that he would be interested in going anywhere else, although stranger things have happened.