Oh Brother! Marcel Joins Rene in Lachemann Managing

Article excerpt

It was not a decision arrived at lightly, the night giving way to morning Tuesday before Marcel Lachemann arrived at a decision that will make modern major league history.

Lachemann, 52, elected to accept the Angels' offer to succeed Buck Rodgers as manager. Thus, did Marcel and Rene Lachemann become the first set of brothers to manage in the major leagues at the same time since George and Harry Wright (with Providence and Boston) in 1879.

Rene is the manager at Florida, the team from which Marcel came. The latter has been the Marlins' pitching coach since their inception in 1993, and to arrive at this decision, he solicited the advice of Rene and Marlins' coach Doug Rader, a former Angels' manager.

"We sat up until about 4, 4:30 this morning," Lachemann said via telephone from the Marlins' New York hotel. "The three of us were up in Rene's room, and when we opened the door to leave, the paper was on the step. It was pretty emotional. It's tough to leave my brother."

The overriding factor was the opportunity to fulfill a vanishing dream, he said, to manage at the major league level and with the Angels, as well.

"At one time, it was a big deal," Lachemann said of his managerial aspirations. "Then for a period of time, it was not. I felt the situation had to be pretty right to do it. This is probably the only place I would think of doing this because of the area and the people who are there."

Lachemann, a native of Los Angeles, was the Angels' pitching coach from 1984 until he resigned following the 1992 season. He also spent two seasons as a minor league instructor with the Angels.

Bill Bavasi, the Angels' general manager, on Monday had asked Marlins' GM Dave Dombrowski for permission to talk with Lachemann. Following the Marlins' game with the Mets Monday night, Dombrowski informed Lachemann of Bavasi's interest.

Lachemann spoke with Bavasi Monday night, then phoned him Tuesday morning and accepted the position. Terms of the contract have yet to be finalized, though Bavasi said it would extend beyond the 1994 season.

Bavasi was evasive on the reasons behind his decision to fire Rodgers, but not on his decision to hire Lachemann.

"We wanted someone who was very familiar with the organization from top to bottom," Bavasi said at an Anaheim Stadium news conference. "He's a hard worker, very organized and familiar with us. We wanted someone not far removed from the American League.

"It's a real convenient additive that this man for a number of years ran half a ball game (pitching). He's a very talented all-around baseball guy that people can't help but respect. We're very, very comfortable with him taking the reins of the ball club. He's into wringing dry the talent of young players, and in today's climate you must do that. You cannot waste a drop."

Perhaps the most ringing endorsement came from former Angels manager Gene Mauch, who employed Lachemann as his pitching coach in each his two tenures managing the Angels. …