Grady Little Fourth in Manager of Year Voting

The Dodgers Grady Little finished in fourth place in the National League Manager of the Year balloting after guiding the Dodgers to a playoff slot. Despite a quickly-assembled lineup that was liberally dotted with rookies, he recorded a 92-72 record as the club tied for the National League West title with San Diego.

He trailed Florida's Joe Girardi, New York's Willie Randolph, San Diego's Bruce Bochy and finished in front of the Phillies Charlie Manuel, Cincinnati's Jerry Narron, and Houston's Phil Garner.

Randolph, Manuel and Garner all have ties with the Dodgers.

No one expected Girardi to win the pennant. In fact, most were amazed when his team hung around the wild card spot into the final weeks of the 2006 season.

Playing 22 rookies, six of whom were voted top 10 spots 1n the rookie of the year balloting, Girardi guided the Marlins to a 78-84 finish after being expected to lose at least 100 games.

Apparently that wasn't good enough and he was fired two days after the close of the season.

"I got my opportunity and I made the most of it," Girardi said. "I don't know if vindication is a good word, just because as a manager, you want to manage."

He received 18 of 32 first-place votes and totaled 111 points in balloting by the Baseball Writers' Association of America. Randolph got eight first-place votes and 81 points. Bochy had 50 points and Little garnered one first place, five second place and 10 third place votes, good for 30 points.
2006 NL Manager of Year Voting

                    1st 2nd 3rd total
Joe Girardi, Fla     18   6  3  111
Willie Randolph, NY   8  11  8   81
Bruce Bochy, SD       5   6  7   50
Grady Little, LA      1   5 10   30
Charlie Manuel, Phil  -   3  -    9
Jerry Narron, Cin     -   1  3    6
Phil Garner, Hou      -   -  1    1
Girardi is the first Manager of the Year to be fired the same year. Baltimore's Davey Johnson, who won the AL title in 1997, resigned hours before he won the award that year.

Jim Leyland, the 61-year-old manager of the Tigers, won his third Manager of the Year award - and first in the AL. He also won with the Pittsburgh Pirates in 1990 and '92.

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