Padres pick up manager Black's option

PEORIA, AZ — The San Diego Padres announced today that the club has exercised Manager Bud Black's option for the 2009 season.

"While we exercised Buddy's option for next year, we believe that he will continue to grow and develop as a Major League manager for many years to come," said Towers. "He has exceeded our expectations and we are excited for the future of the Padres under his guidance."

Black, 50, made his managerial debut with the Padres in 2007, leading the club to an 89-74 record. The 89 wins were the most for San Diego since the club won a franchise-record 98 contests in 1998. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, the Padres .546 winning percentage under Black was the best for a first-year manager (minimum 50 games) since Ken Macha with Oakland (.593, 96-66) and Bob Melvin with Seattle (.574, 93-69) in 2003. Additionally, the last National League manager with a winning percentage that high in his first season was Bob Brenly for Arizona (.568, 92-70) in 2001.

"When the San Diego Padres hired Bud Black as manager, we knew of his knowledge and passion for the game," said Padres CEO Sandy Alderson. "His abilities to communicate, teach and lead are tremendous. Buddy's passion and energy are contagious, not only at the Major League level, but throughout the entire organization."

Named the 16th manager in franchise history on November 9, 2006, Black joined the Padres after seven seasons as the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim pitching coach (2000-06). He previously spent four years in the Cleveland Indians organization, holding the position of Special Assistant to General Manager John Hart for three years (1996-97, 1999) and pitching coach for Cleveland's Triple-A affiliate in Buffalo for the 1998 season.

A left-handed pitcher, Black pitched 17 years professionally, including 15 seasons in the Majors with the Seattle Mariners (1981), Kansas City Royals (1982-88), Cleveland Indians (1988-90, 1995), Toronto Blue Jays (1990) and San Francisco Giants (1991-94). In 398 Major League games (296 starts), he compiled a 121-116 record with 32 complete games, 12 shutouts, 11 saves and a 3.84 ERA (876 ER/2053.1 IP). Black, who played in two American League Championship Series with Kansas City in 1984-85 and was a member of the Royals 1985 World Series Champion team, is only the third individual over the last 40 years to have a playing career in which he won at least 100 games as a pitcher and served as a club's manager. Bob Lemon, who last managed with the Yankees in 1982, won 207 games during his playing career, while Larry Dierker won 139 games before managing the Houston Astros from 1997-2001 (Elias Sports Bureau).

Originally signed by the Mariners as a 17th-round pick in the 1979 June Free Agent Draft, Black played two seasons (1978-79) of college ball at San Diego State University where he earned a bachelor's degree in finance in 1979.

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