Jacksonville Sports Day

Marlins’ Mattingly, Rays’ Cash Named Major League Baseball’s 2020 Managers of the Year

Miami’s Don Mattingly and Tampa Bay’s Kevin Cash were honored as Major League Baseball’s 2020 Managers of the Year on Tuesday.

Cash received 22 of 30 first-place AL votes by the Baseball Writers’ Association of America while Mattingly received 20 of 30 first-place votes in the NL race. Voting is based on regular-season performance.

Mattingly, the 1985 AL Most Valuable Player, is the fifth man to win both an MVP and a Manager of the Year Award.

“When I think about this award, it feels like a team award,” he said. “I feel like it’s an organizational award, because it’s really your staff and your players have to buy in. We’ve taken our lumps for a couple years, and it looks like we’re starting to turn the corner a little bit.”

Miami’s season was only three days old when 18 members of their original 30-man roster were sidelined by the virus (a 19th player opted out). After eight days off and a roster overhaul, the Marlins played 49 games in 47 days to snap a streak of 10 straight losing seasons.

Mattingly said that after losing 105 games in 2019 — “Nothing is tougher than that.” — he walked into Spring Training convinced the Marlins were capable of a turnaround. He preached that message day in and day out and never stopped believing, even as his team was tested in ways few teams ever have been.

Cash was an AL Manager of the Year finalist in 2018 and ’19, he led the Rays to their first AL East division title since 2010.

But the Rays finished with a 3.56 team ERA, third lowest in MLB, and they ended up getting all the way to Game 6 of the World Series.

Cash said there were moments when he wondered if the Rays would be able to overcome the avalanche of injuries, especially to their pitching staff. But they won the AL East by seven games and then survived a tough road that included going the distance against the Yankees and Astros before losing Game 6 of the World Series to the Dodgers.

“I do think it’s an organizational award,” Cash said, “but it certainly means a lot to me personally. When you look at these awards, there’s only two that are given out every year, and to be recognized as one of the better ones on that given season means that a lot of things went your way.”

With Mattingly and Cash winning, both awards stayed in the state of the Florida for the first time. The only other time it’s happened with managers in the same state was 1988 when Tommy Lasorda (Dodgers) and Tony La Russa (A’s) produced a California sweep.

Below are the vote totals for the Manager of the Year Awards:

NATIONAL LEAGUE

Don Mattingly, Marlins (20 first-place votes): 124 points
Jayce Tingler, Padres (6): 71
David Ross, Cubs (1): 25
Brian Snitker, Braves (1): 16
Dave Roberts, Dodgers (1): 13
Mike Shildt, Cardinals (0): 10
Craig Counsell, Brewers (1): 6
Gabe Kapler, Giants (0): 3
David Bell, Reds (0): 2

AMERICAN LEAGUE

Kevin Cash, Rays (22 first-place votes): 126 points
Rick Renteria, White Sox (5): 61
Charlie Montoyo, Blue Jays (2): 47
Bob Melvin, A’s (1): 22
Rocco Baldelli, Twins (0): 13
Dusty Baker, Astros (0): 1

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