The San Diego Padres are not necessarily a perennial contender in the National League West, but one thing seems to be universally agreed upon regardless: Bud Black is an outstanding manager.
Black has held the post as manager of the Padres for seven seasons now, and on Sunday afternoon he notched his 600th career victory in that position. Corey Brock of MLB.com reports the following about the accomplishment:
On Sunday, Black earned career victory No. 600, as the Padres held on for a 7-4 win over the D-backs at Chase Field, a tidy bow to place atop a 3-7 road trip that was anything but pleasant.
Black is in his eighth season as manager. He had winning seasons in 2007 and again in ’10.
That’s the interesting part about Black’s reputation. In his career as San Diego manager has a cumulative win-loss record of 600-664. His teams have never won a division title and have only finished in second place once. All of that is true, yet Black appears to continue to have solid job security.
The length of his tenure and the fact that he does not appear to be leaving anytime soon may or may not be a tacit acknowledgement that Black simply does not have the horses that other, more talented teams have.
That leaves the Padres to do the best with what they’re got, and it appears that they trust Black to do so as manager more than they would a potential replacement for him. All things considered, that is probably the right way to go.