The San Diego Padres have announced their third manager, joining Hae-Sung Kim (28). Mike Shields (55), a senior advisor to the Padres, has been named the team’s 23rd manager.
MLB.com announced today (Aug. 22) that the Padres have signed Shields to a two-year contract. Sylt has served as a senior advisor to the Padres for the past two seasons.
Sylt was known to Korean fans when left-handed pitcher Kim Kwang-hyun (35, SSG Landers) played in the American Major League. He was Kim’s manager when he played for the St. Louis Cardinals. Schildt coached in St. Louis for more than a decade before taking over as manager from 2018 to 2021. He won the National League Manager’s Award in 2019 and led the team to the playoffs in three of his four seasons as manager.
San Diego General Manager A.J. Preller said, “Sylt is a proven major league manager. He has over 20 years of professional baseball coaching experience. He brings a strong baseball knowledge and passion for teaching the game to San Diego,” said A.J. Freller, president of the San Diego Padres.
“He has great relationships with both minor league and major league players and staff. We believe he is the right person to lead San Diego forward and get us back to the World Series championship we have been searching for.”
Kim will be facing his third manager in San Diego since 2021. In his rookie season, Jayson Tingler led San Diego in 2021. Tingler guaranteed Kim a starting spot even when he struggled to adjust to big league pitching early in the season, batting just .1 percent. Tingler gave him the benefit of the doubt, saying, “100 at-bats should be an adjustment period,” and recognized his defensive steadiness early on, allowing him to play multiple infield positions and develop into a utility player.레모나토토
Bob Melvin was the first manager to turn Kim into a regular starter. Last year, he was forced to use Kim at shortstop after Fernando Tatis Jr. missed the entire season due to a PED suspension, but he trusted Kim’s defensive steadiness and gave him chances even when his bat was up and down, developing him into a player who could play 150+ games a season. This year, when the team signed free-agent shortstop phenom Xander Bogaerts, they moved him to second base and gave him another shot at the starting job.
Kim had a career-high season, batting .260 (140-for-538) with 17 home runs, 60 RBIs, and 38 stolen bases in 152 games this season, becoming the first Asian infielder to win a National League Gold Glove for utility. Melvin also encouraged Ha-Sung Kim to join the 20-homer, 20-steal club, saying that he had “developed into a player who can definitely hit 20 or more home runs in a season” after a season in which he stopped at 17.
However, Melvin left the team with time left on his contract. Last month, he was hired as the new manager of the San Francisco Giants. Melvin had been rumored to be feuding with Preller for some time, and eventually left the team. San Diego also chose to part ways with Melvin, allowing him to interview for the San Francisco managerial job.
Tingler and Melvin continued to give Kim opportunities. Under Schildt, Kim is expected to be a regular starter barring injury. The Padres are also looking at Kim as their starting shortstop next season. The club believes the infield of third baseman Manny Machado, shortstop Kim, second baseman Jake Cronenworth, and first baseman Bogaerts will allow for greater synergy on offense. Sylt, who spent the last two seasons in San Diego, is familiar with Kim and the club’s situation, so he won’t be too far off from the club’s thinking.
“It’s definitely a plus to have someone who knows our players, our situation, and our organization,” Freller said. Schildt is the first manager Preller has found from within the organization in his five seasons in charge of San Diego.
As MLB.com notes, “Schildt will have to lead a rebound for San Diego after a disappointing season this year. Despite World Series ambitions, the Padres failed to make the postseason, finishing the season with an 82-80 record. There will undoubtedly be some rebuilding in the offseason. However, the core of San Diego’s roster, especially on offense, will remain largely intact.