Former major league player and veteran manager Randy Ready was officially named as the new manager for the 2007 San Antonio Missions baseball team on February 12th. The Missions, who spent six years as the Seattle Mariners Double-A affiliate, signed a new player development contract with the San Diego Padres this off-season.
This season is being called a "grand re-opening" for the Missions, and Ready's arrival is part of that.
"I'm enthused with the opportunity to manage this team and work closely with the players," said Ready. “I have twenty-five players all trying to achieve the same goal of making it to the major leagues. They have a lot to learn, and I have a lot to teach them."
For the past three seasons, Ready managed in the Padres organization at the Single-A level in Ft. Wayne, Indiana. In 2004, the Fort Wayne Wizards were 72-68 and qualified for the Midwest League playoffs. One year later, the Wizards finished with an overall record of 65-75. Last season, Ready led the Wizards to a 71-66 record before being defeated in the first round of the postseason. Over five seasons as a manager, Ready has secured a 300-266 record and a .530 winning percentage. Ready was also named the New York-Penn League Manager of the Year in 2002 while managing Detroit’s minor league affiliate in Oneonta.
The Padres begin spring training on February 15th, with the bulk of the minor league players arriving in early March, and Ready plans to focus on three key elements: pitching, offense, and defense.
While the team has almost nine weeks before the season begins Ready and company are planning to work out the strengths and weaknesses before the season begins.
"Our bullpen is very experienced, our closers have done it before, and we have some strength coming in at the plate,” said Ready. “We will maintain our strengths and work on the weaknesses. Collectively, this baseball team is going to be very competitive this season."