There’s a new trend in Major League Baseball:

First-year managers.

In Detroit, veteran skipper Jim Leyland has been succeeded by 44-year-old first-time manager Brad Ausmus. The former catcher spent 18 seasons in the big leagues with four different ball clubs, and takes over a team with lofty expectations for the future.

Two years ago, Mike Matheny found himself in a very similar situation. The first-time skipper was hired to replace legendary Cardinals manager Tony LaRussa following a World Series championship.

Matheny joined Jeff Joyce and Kevin Kennedy on Inside Pitch to discuss the influx of rookie skippers.

Brad is a smart guy as everybody knows. He’s very well respected in the game and I’m sure he’s going to jump in just like Matt Williams and have a lot of success. But I remember, I had to call and give a ‘thank you’ also because Robin Ventura got his job about a week ahead of me and he took the majority of the darts for bringing in a manager that has never had any kind of experience. So, Robin kind of blazed the trail, I followed and it’s good to see some other guys getting opportunities.

In two seasons as the Cardinals manager, Matheny has won 185 games and a National League Pennant.

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