Ranking the Top 10 Managers in Major League Baseball Right Now

After a series of new hires, all 30 MLB teams officially have their managers in place for the 2024 season. Who are the top 10 in the game?

ARLINGTON, TEXAS - NOVEMBER 03: Texas Rangers manager Bruce Bochy and his wife Kim Seib ridie with the World Series trophy and wave to fans lining the street and buildings during the World Series Victory Parade outside Globe Life Field on November 3, 2023 in Arlington, Texas. The Rangers defeated the Arizona Diamondbacks, 4-1 at the World Series. (Photo by Tom Fox - Pool/Getty Images)

One of the hardest things to quantify in professional sports is the impact of coaching on a team’s success. Players are the ones who drive winning and a head coach can only do so much with the talent they have at their disposal.

This is even more the case with baseball, where managers are tasked with guiding their team through a grueling 162-game season, in which the sample size is so large that the cream generally always rises to the top when it comes to talent.

At an age where analytics departments are more involved with decision-making than ever, the manager is often just the face that meets the media to answer for the franchise’s thought-process, as compared to old school managers of the past that truly were the end-all be-all decision-makers for their clubs.

With the position becoming increasingly difficult, the turnover in managers is incredibly high, as the first person to get scapegoated for a bad season is typically manager. How then can we quantify what makes a good manager?

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In 2022, Buck Showalter won his fourth Manager of the Year award for leading the Mets to the playoffs in his first season, boasting an impressive 101-61 record. A year later, Showalter was fired after the Mets failed to make the playoffs with a 75-87 record.

The Mets filled his position with a first-time manager in Carlos Mendoza, who was one of many that filled vacancies in this year’s coaching carousel.

Now that the San Diego Padres have hired Mike Shildt, filling the last managerial vacancy, we figured it would be interesting to rank the top managers in the game today. This list is ripe for contention, as there is no way to tangibly assess the value of a manager.

With that said, here are the top 10 managers in the game today.

Honorable Mentions

Before we go into the top 10 list, there are is one key to discuss. He just happens to be one of the two guys who was just named the Manager of the Year for the 2023 season.

Skip Schumaker ended a two-decade playoff drought (in full seasons) for the Miami Marlins in his first season at the helm.

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The Marlins went 84-78 in Schumaker’s first season and he was a big reason for that success. If you look at the Marlins’ Pythagorean win-loss record, which looks at a teams run differential to come up with what their record should have been, Miami should have gone 75-87.

Under Schumaker, the Marlins were adept at winning close games, which could be a direct correlation to his impact as the manager. It can also be a small sample size that erodes next season, so it is too early to call Schumaker a top 10 manager in the game.

1. Bruce Bochy, Texas Rangers

Career Record (Winning Percentage): 2,093-2101 (.499)

World Series Titles: 4

Pennants Won: 5

Playoff Berths: 9

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Manager of the Year Award: 1

Figured it was best to begin this list at the mountaintop, because few will have any complaints with acknowledging that Bruce Bochy is the best manager in Major League Baseball.

Bochy took over the Texas Rangers this season, after taking three years away from managing following his long tenure with the San Francisco Giants. In his first season with Texas, they won it all for the first time in franchise history,

This now adds to a Hall of Fame resume for Bochy, who now owns four World Series titles and five pennants.

Bochy’s first pennant came when he was the manager of the San Diego Padres back in 1998. That year, Bochy guided the Padres to a 98-64 season, as they went on to beat the 106-win Atlanta Braves in the NLCS. San Diego would ultimately get swept by the Yankees in the World Series, but this was the beginning of Bochy’s legendary run as a manager in the postseason.

Across 12 seasons spent with the Padres, Bochy went to the playoffs four times.

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In their franchise history, the Padres have only made the playoffs nine times, one of which when Bochy was their backup catcher in 1984. It is fair to say that Bochy presided over the most successful era of Padres baseball, although he wouldn’t get to the mountaintop until his next stop.

Bochy left the Padres to sign wit the San Francisco Giants in 2007, embarking on another managerial journey that would span more than 10 seasons. There were growing pains at first, but in his fourth season managing the club he took the Giants to the promise land in 2010.

For the Giants, this was their first World Series title since 1954, when they were still the New York Giants. It began a magical even-year run, where San Francisco took home title every other year starting in 2010 and ending in 2014.

Bochy spent 13 seasons managing the Giants before retiring and moving into a front office role with the club following the 2019 season. Then here we are a few years later and Bochy got the itch to manage again, picking the perfect landing spot with the Rangers.

After winning his fourth ring, Bochy is now tied with Walter Alston and Joe Torre for fourth in MLB history in World Series titles. Joe McCarthy and Casey Stengel hold the record with seven titles each and Connie Mack comes in third with five.

Bochy is the active leader in manager wins and finds himself 10th on the all-time list. Sitting 233 wins behind Joe Torre on the all-time list, there is every chance that Bochy finishes his career in the top five.

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2. Dave Roberts, Los Angeles Dodgers

Career Record (Winning Percentage): 753-443 (.630)

World Series Titles: 1

Pennants Won: 3

Playoff Berths: 8

Manager of the Year Award: 1

Now that we are past Bruce Bochy and his illustrious resume, we can pick things up a bit as we look at the rest of our top 10. Dave Roberts checks in at No. 2 due to the fact that he has fair and away the best winning percentage of all current MLB managers.

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Roberts took over the Dodgers in 2016 and has compiled a remarkable 753-443 record across his eight seasons managing the club.

During that span, the Dodgers have eclipsed 100 wins five times and have never missed the playoffs. They have also won the division in all but one season with Roberts at the helm. Looking at his career .630 winning percentage, Roberts has by far the top mark among active managers in the game.

The only place where you can really quibble with Roberts success as the Dodgers manager is the team’s lack of success in the playoffs. While he has won three pennants in eight years, the Dodgers lone championship came in the warped 2020 COVID season, which unfortunately comes with a bit of an asterisk.

Yes, Roberts is a World Series-winning manager, who has one of the best winning percentages in MLB history. But if he doesn’t get to that mountaintop again, his resume is going to be incomplete. For now though, it’s hard to pick put any other less-accomplished managers ahead of him.

3. Brian Snitker, Atlanta Braves

Career Record (Winning Percentage): 646-509 (.559)

World Series Titles: 1

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Pennants Won: 1

Playoff Berths: 6

Manager of the Year Award: 1

Brian Snitker was named the Atlanta Braves interim manager back in 2016, taking over for Fredi Gonzalez. Having long been part of the Braves organization dating back to his playing days, Snitker came up through the organization and eventually worked under legendary manager Bobby Cox.

When he first took over the position, the Braves were in one of their few down periods as a franchise, finishing last in the division in 2016 with a 68-93 record. Atlanta didn’t fare much better in Snitker’s second year on the job, his first after having the interim tag removed.

The Braves had a young core developing under Snikter and the fruits of that labor began to show in 2018, when Atlanta won their first division title in four years with a 90-72 record. They have since won the NL East in each of the last five seasons as well, marking six-straight for Snitker’s Braves.

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In 2021, Snitker and the Braves reached the mountaintop, winning their fourth World Series title in franchise history and the first since 1995.

4. Kevin Cash, Tampa Bay Rays

Career Record (Winning Percentage): 739-617 (.545)

World Series Titles: 0

Pennants Won: 1

Playoff Berths: 5

Manager of the Year Award: 2

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As we continue on through this list, it is going to be clear that it is hard to separate between good franchises and good managers. If a franchise is well-run, they will have their ideal manager running the show for a long period of time. Said manager gets the benefit of racking up wins because the franchise is so good, yet they really are an integral part of the franchise.

Just like Dave Roberts is fortunate to have the Los Angeles Dodgers job, the same can be said for Kevin Cash in Tampa. The Rays manager will manage his 10th season with the club in 2024, a remarkable achievement in of itself these days.

During his first four seasons with the Rays, Cash never managed a playoff game. Then in 2019, he finally led a team into October, with the Rays making it into the Wild Card Game with their 96-win record. After beating the Athletics to advance to the ALDS, the Rays lost to the Houston Astros in five games.

One year later, Cash had the Rays back in the playoffs and they ended up going on a magical run to the World Series. This was of course also during the aforementioned crazy COVID year, but it was the second in what is now a five-year run making the playoffs for the Rays.

Similar to Roberts, a lack of postseason success could soon stain Cash’s resume, but his ability to do more with less (a hallmark of the Rays franchise) has him pretty high on this list.

It really was a toss-up on who to pick between Cash and Brian Snitker. Snitker has Cash in winning percentage, but five-straight playoff berths in Tampa is may be even more impressive than six-straight for Snitker in Atlanta.

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Ultimately the real difference here was the World Series title that Snitker has on his resume.

5. Craig Counsell, Chicago Cubs

Career Record (Winning Percentage): 707-625 (.531)

World Series Titles: 0

Pennants Won: 0

Playoff Berths: 5

Manager of the Year Award: 0

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Considering the fact that Craig Counsell is now the highest-paid manager in Major League Baseball, it felt like he needed to crack the top five of this list. With that said, it is a little surprising how empty his resume truly is compared to the other great managers in the game.

Nine seasons managing in Milwaukee and the furthest he ever got in the playoffs was back in 2018, when Counsell’s Brewers finished a game short of the World Series, losing the Dodgers in the seventh game of the NLCS.

The reason why Counsell is so highly-regarded is because of his ability to do more with less, presiding over the most successful era of baseball in the franchise’s history, with the Brewers making the playoffs five times and winning the division three times.

Now Counsell will get put to the test for a new team, with the pressure of a big contract in one of the larger markets. The Cubs might be able to field a better team on a higher payroll, but the pressure is now going to be on Counsell to make the most out of this opportunity.

6. Rob Thomson, Philadelphia Phillies

Career Record (Winning Percentage): 155-117 (.568)

World Series Titles: 0

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Pennants Won: 1

Playoff Berths: 2

Manager of the Year Award: 0

Going to the World Series in your first season as a manager is a pretty impressive accomplishment, particularly when you didn’t even start the year leading the club. Thomson served as the Phillies bench coach for parts of five seasons, beginning in 2018 under then first-year manager Gabe Kapler.

After Kapler was fired two years later, Thompson stayed on to be part of manager Joe Girardi’s staff. In Girardi’s third year leading the club, he was let go in early June after a 22-29 start to the season.

Enter Rob Thomson.

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Thomson helped spark a magical run for the Phillies, who went from seven games under .500 to finish eight games over, grabbing the last Wild Card spot. The Phillies eventually advanced to the World Series, where they lost in six games to the Houston Astros.

In his second year managing this past season, Thomson again led the Phillies to the NLCS, but they came up just a bit short, dropping the seventh game to the Arizona Diamondbacks. With the core that is in place, Thomson should get a couple more cracks at winning it all over the coming years.

7. Aaron Boone, New York Yankees

Career Record (Winning Percentage): 509-361 (.585)

World Series Titles: 0

Pennants Won: 0

Playoff Berths: 5

Manager of the Year Award: 0

The New York Yankees are coming off their most disappointing season in a long time, as they failed to punch their usual annual ticket to the playoffs are going 82-80. There was a chance that manager Aaron Boone could have been scapegoated for the poor performance, but instead the Yankees have decided to keep the faith in their manager.

That faith is probably not misplaced, as Boone featured the second-best regular season winning percentage on this list. The problem however is that he hasn’t much of any success leading the Yankees on runs once they get to the playoffs.

If Boone wants to hold onto his post as the Yankees skipper, this team is going to need to find postseason success sooner rather than later.

8. Alex Cora, Boston Red Sox

Career Record (Winning Percentage): 440-370 (.543)

World Series Titles: 1

Pennants Won: 1

Playoff Berths: 2

Manager of the Year Award: 0

Alex Cora’s managerial resume is pretty strong, considering the fact that he is one of four manager that actually has a World Series victory on his ledger. Cora is widely-regarded to be a great manager, but he is overseeing one of the more down period for the Boston Red Sox in recent memory.

The Red Sox have made the playoffs just one time in the last five years since winning the 2018 World Series. Now Cora missed one of those when he was suspended and let go for his involvement in the Houston Astros sign-stealing scandal of 2017. But after taking a year hiatus in 2020, Cora was right back in charge.

While it is not his fault the Red Sox traded Mookie Betts, he still has only been able to lead his team to a winning record twice in six years, which is why he checks in a bit further down on this list.

9. Brandon Hyde, Baltimore Orioles

Career Record (Winning Percentage): 646-509 (.559)

World Series Titles: 0

Pennants Won: 0

Playoff Berths: 1

Manager of the Year Award: 1

Brandon Hyde just took home the AL Manager of the Year award for his work guiding the Baltimore Orioles to the best record in the American League. Hyde’s Orioles won 101 games and broke a playoff drought that went back to the 2016 season.

Again though, talent wins out and that can be reflected in Hyde’s tenure in Baltimore.

He took over the manager position in 2019, at a time where the Orioles were set to endure a lengthy rebuild following years with Buck Showalter at the helm. In his first two full seasons, no team was worse in baseball than the Orioles, who lost 108 games in 2019 and 110 in 2021.

Now Hyde helped turn things around in 2022, when the Orioles went 83-79, but a lot of that success came after the promotion of Adley Rutschman at catcher.

With their success in the last two seasons, Hyde now has a career 315-394 record as a manager, with a paltry .444 winning percentage. Time will tell if he truly is the right manager to guide this Orioles team, which is embarking on a real window to contend.

10. Rocco Baldelli, Minnesota Twins

Career Record (Winning Percentage): 375-333 (.530)

World Series Titles: 0

Pennants Won: 0

Playoff Berths: 3

Manager of the Year Award: 1

Our last manager that cracks this list is Rocco Baldelli, who just finished his fifth season as the manager of the Minnesota Twins.

Baldelli might not have the flashiest resume on this list, but he does have one Manager of the Year award to his name. This award came during his first season guiding the club, taking a losing team from the year prior and turning them into a 101-win AL Central division winner.

In his five years managing the Twins, they have won the AL Central three times.

More importantly, Baldelli’s Twins finally won a playoff game this past season, advancing past the Wild Card round before losing to the Houston Astros in the ALDS. For the Twins, this was the first time they had won a playoff game since 2004 and the first time they won a playoff series since 2001.