Dodgers Dugout: And the next manager of the Dodgers will be ...

Will Gabe Kapler be the next manager of the Dodgers?

Will Gabe Kapler be the next manager of the Dodgers?

(Harry How / Getty Images)

Hi, and welcome to another edition of Dodgers Dugout. My name is Houston Mitchell, figuring that if enough people say no, the Dodgers will eventually ask me to manage.

Who’s next?

So now that Don Mattingly is gone and managing the Miami Marlins, who will be the next contestant in “Do what the front office says while leading the Dodgers”? Let’s take a look at the top candidates:

Bud Black: The well-respected former Padres manager is going to be the new manager of the Washington Nationals, so scratch him from the list.

Dusty Baker: Loved among Dodgers fans, and their top choice, judging by the emails we get. But he’s not going to get the job because he likes to do things his way. Besides, if you thought Mattingly was bad at handling the pitching staff, Baker is the last person you would want.

Davey Lopes: Another favorite among Dodgers fans. But he’s 70 and had two bad seasons as a manager 15 years ago. He’s not getting the job.

Tim Wallach and Ron Roenicke: I think either would make a fine manager, and would lean toward Wallach, but do you think the Dodgers would tell them that they are free to look for jobs elsewhere if they had either one in mind as the next manager?

Dave Martinez: A coach for the Cubs, Martinez followed Joe Maddon to Chicago after the Rays did not make him  manager. Between Martinez and the next guy on the list, I would give the job to Martinez, but both are basically unknowns when it comes to how they would manage a major league team. I would give it to Martinez, hoping he learned a lot from Maddon. And who is that next guy on the list?

Gabe Kapler: Well, I'm not sure how the star of "Welcome Back, Kotter" got into the discussion, but if he brings Horshack....  Oh, I'm sorry, that was Gabe Kaplan.

Gabe Kapler is the guy who will get the job as Dodgers manager. He has been with the Dodgers for a year and apparently works closely with Andrew Friedman. He is only 40, was born in Hollywood and went to Taft High in Woodland Hills. Kapler runs his own fitness and lifestyle blog. Friedman said this about Kapler after hiring him to be the Dodgers’ farm director: "He's incredibly bright, he's a tremendous leader of people, and he's an exceptional communicator. It's so hard for players, who are so mired in it, to sometimes see the bigger picture or even look at it from a different perspective. Gabe is incredibly skilled at seeing things at different perspectives."

Sounds like the next manager to me.

What about Vin?

A lot of readers have emailed me to ask about Vin Scully, and Thursday night he gave a long interview to SportsNet LA, where he said he can't wait to come back next season. 

Of course, most Dodgers fans were unable to watch the interview, because it was only on SportsNet LA.

It's nice that Vin wanted to let us know he was feeling fine and was definitely coming back. But it would have been even nicer if he had told SportsNet LA, "I'll do the interview only if you agree to make it available to everyone. If you are unable to do that, then I will find an outlet that allows every Dodgers fan to see it." I mean, really, what would they do to him if he took that stand? Fire him? No way.

Of course, Scully is too much of a gentleman to do that, but it's going to take something like that to break this impasse. 

Lunch with Vin and Ross Porter

Former Dodgers broadcaster Ross Porter, who answered your questions all season (and will do so again next season), has asked to share a unique opportunity to contribute to Stillpoint Family Resources, a Los Angeles-area charity that provides counseling to families in crisis. A news release describes the event:

Bidding is now open for you and one guest of your choosing to spend some quality time in a quiet setting with Vin Scully and his longtime radio and telecast partner Ross Porter.

In order to ensure the intimacy of the event, there will be only three winners, with one guest each, for a total of six people. All attendees will share one table with Vin and Ross. The lunch is tentatively scheduled for February 2016 and will be held at a private residence in Calabasas.

To place your bid, please contact Jenni Porter at (818) 518-6973, or email her at Bidders will be informed by email of their bid status at any given time and may increase their bid before the close of auction. All bids should be in increments of $250. Each bid is for two persons. Opening minimum bid is $1,000.

All proceeds of the auction are for the benefit of Stillpoint Family Resources, a 501c3 nonprofit organization. Payment of a winning bid is tax-deductible as a charitable donation.

One winning bid (for the winner and a guest) will be announced on Nov. 2 at the 10th Annual Ross Porter Celebrity Golf Classic at North Ranch Country Club in Westlake Village. Bidding for two remaining winners (for two winners and their guests) will continue until the close of the auction at noon on Dec. 20, 2015. The two remaining winning bidders will be informed following the close of auction. 

The fans speak

I got a lot of reaction from the last Dodgers Dugout, when I said Mattingly should not be blamed for everything fans pin on him. A sampling of reader emails:

Gennaro: So now we are told that Mattingly did not have full control of making field decisions. Give me a manager who's not going to listen to anyone about what he decides is best for his team on the field.

Ed Natan:  I think I represent most Dodger fans in saying that we finally got our wish and parted ways with Donnie Baseball.  Watching the last five years (seems like 30) from my seats, I watched Donnie “not” manage this deal day in and night out.  We didn’t score runs yet Donnie refused to play small ball.  He trotted out at least 140 different lineups this year. How could any player get comfortable with not knowing where he was playing or batting until shortly before game time.  

Garrett Cooper: I wasn't in love with Donnie as our manager, but not sure anyone would have done better. I think he was given a team that was OK, not great.

Glenn Strickler: The only gripe I had with Don as a fan were his communication skills. It didn't seem he communicated well with the press during the postgame interviews. I am sure that same lack of skills spilled over to the clubhouse and the front office. 

Horacio Trujillo: Hey, Houston, I'm a new subscriber to the Dugout and want to simply say thanks for it.   For the first time, I feel like I can be part of the "conversation" and "community" without having to be a diehard MLB aficionado. I liked your analysis of Mattingly's ouster, particularly the insight into the micromanaging of the front office in the lineups. I was already not a fan of the move, and I'm not saying it's a bad move, but I'm now more skeptical that we are going to see much immediate improvement from the change at the helm. And maybe we could do worse.

And finally

Could the Dodgers charge Miami with tampering regarding the Don Mattingly hire? Steve Dilbeck takes a look at that here.

Have a comment or something you'd like to see in a future Dodgers newsletter? Email me and follow me on Twitter: @latimeshouston