A man known inside the clubhouse for putting bagels in his sliding shorts could be tabbed as the Brewers' next manager.
Pat Murphy's Resume
Current position: Brewers' bench coach (2016-present)
MLB managerial experience: Padres' interim manager (2015)
Minor League managerial experience: El Paso Chihuahas/Tucson Padres (Padres' AAA affiliate, 2013-15), Eugene Emeralds (Padres' A- affiliate, 2011-12)
Other notable experience: College head coach at Arizona State, Notre Dame, Team Netherlands
"I like to share a snack before a game once in a while," said Brewers' bench coach Pat Murphy in an interview on Foul Territory in late-May. "To share a bagel, it's kind of a connection thing."
But while Murphy may be known for his jokes inside the clubhouse, he is considered a serious candidate to be selected as the Brewers' next manager. Murphy was formally interviewed by the club last Tuesday, the first following the surprising departure of Craig Counsell.
"I want to clarify something: Pat Murphy is in very real discussion for our managerial opportunity," said Arnold at last week's GM meetings.
The 64-year-old Murphy has served as the Brewers' bench coach for the past eight years. Prior to his stint in Milwaukee, he spent five seasons in the San Diego Padres' organization, including a 96-game stint as interim manager to end 2015. Murphy spent the previous 4 1/2 years managing in the minor league system, including two first-place finishes with the Eugene Emeralds at the now-defunct short-season low-A level.
Murphy also spent 26 years in the college ranks, 1983-2009, including stops at Notre Dame and Arizona State. Former Brewers' manager Craig Counsell is among the 30 future major leaguers coached by Murphy during his 26-year collegiate coaching career.
Well-respected around the game, Murphy would represent the most logical internal choice for a franchise looking to continue its recent run of success. The wealth of knowledge that comes with a 39-year coaching career more than qualifies Murphy to become the next manager of the Brewers.
Former MLB infielder Jason Kipnis spoke on Murphy's coaching style in an interview with him earlier this year.
"One of your [Murphy's] best qualities as a manager, as a coach, the way you dig into these players, you're testing their mental toughness each day," said Kipnis. "You want to see what they've got and if they have it each day... you like to check in on how your players are ready for the nine innings that day."
Murphy admits to gaining perspective as his career has progressed, prioritizing his players over all else. His proclivity toward development could make him a good fit if the Brewers choose to retool in 2024.
"I really do want to impact guys, keep them on track. I'm not here to dominate them or to change them," said Murphy, later in the interview with Kipnis. "You can't be down about the last pitch or the last result... I'm not just a harda-- who wants to beat you over the head."
Should he be promoted, Murphy would follow a familiar path - six current managers were hired from within the Major League coaching staff. Included is the most recent managerial hire, Joe Espada, picked by the Astros after spending the previous six years as bench coach.
Hiring the veteran Murphy would represent a pivot from the Brewers' previous hire - Counsell, 44 years old at the time, had no prior managerial or head coaching experience at any level. But for a Brewers' team with its future built around young talent, Pat Murphy would bring valuable stability and a players-first focus to the dugout.