Explorers Montgomery, Canaries Meyer Named American Association Co-Managers of the Year
American Association Daily provides insights, features, and recaps of the action from around the American Association of Professional Baseball League, as well as player and coaching profiles and transactions. In today’s edition, This Week in the Association and the Minor League Sports Report name Sioux City Explorers Manager Steve Montgomery and Sioux Falls Canaries Skipper Mike Meyer as the American Association Co-Managers of the Year.
Montgomery and Meyer Named as American Association Co-Managers of the Year
On Wednesday, This Week in the Association and the Minor League Sports Report had a first, as the publications named to winners for a yearly award, selecting Sioux City Explorers Manager Steve Montgomery and Sioux Falls Canaries Manager Mike Meyer as the American Association Co-Managers of the Year for 2023. It is only fitting that the two share the honors, as they were tied for the second-best record in the West Division. Both managers received the same number of first and second place votes.
Meyer is in his eighth season at the helm of the Canaries, finishing 52-48. That was the most wins in a single season for Meyer since taking over the Canaries job, giving him a 327-430 career mark. The Sioux Falls Skipper did an amazing job at turning around the season for the Canaries. Sioux Falls began the year with the second worst record in the league, going 7-11 in May with a club ERA of 8.08. The ERA dropped by more than two full runs in June, but the club still finished 11-16.
Meyer had implemented a different strategy for the team in 2023, moving away from the big inning powered by the home run to one where he manufactured runs, getting on base and stealing bases. That philosophy came to fruition in July when the club went 13-11. They followed that up with an impressive 18-9 mark in August, winning eight straight games at one point (August 6-13). The team then went 3-1 in September to close out the season, earning their second postseason appearances during Meyer’s reign.
Steve Montgomery is in his ninth season as manager of the Sioux City Explorers. Montgomery led his team to an identical 52-48 record, his sixth winning season.
What made the success so impressive was the fact that Sioux City lost six players to affiliate ball or the Mexican League before the season even began. This was a significant loss for the team, but the Explorers Skipper found a way to keep his team winning.
The Explorers got off to a fast start, going 10-8 in May. After an 11-15 June, the team posted its second winning month of the season in July, going 13-12. That included recording an eight game winning streak (July 3-10). Sioux City them went 16-10 in August, locking down the sixth playoff appearance for Montgomery in his time as Explorers manager.
We Should Mention
Kansas City Monarchs Manager Joe Calfapietra finished third in the Manager of the Year voting. The Kansas City Skipper led the Monarchs to the top record in the American Association despite completely overhauling the club in the offseason. In his six seasons as manager of the Monarchs, he has led the team to the playoffs in five of those years. Calfapietra was named the top manager in 2018 as well.
By Robert Pannier