INDIAN WELLS, Calif. - Walt Weiss has been hired to replace Jim Tracy as manager of the Colorado Rockies.
The team made the announcement late Wednesday night after owner Dick Monfort and top officials deliberated at the general managers' meetings -- held at a hotel Monfort owns.
Weiss, the 1988 AL Rookie of the Year, and Arizona coach Matt Williams were thought to be the favorites to replace Tracy, who quit Oct. 7 following a last-place finish in the NL West. Rockies bench coach Tom Runnells and first baseman Jason Giambi also interviewed.
Weiss, 48, returns to the Rockies where he spent four years as the club’s shortstop (1994-98) and then seven seasons (2002-2008) as a Special Assistant to the General Manager. Walt played parts of 14 seasons in the Major Leagues with Oakland (1987-1992), Florida (1993), Colorado (1994-97) and Atlanta (1998-2000). In those 14 seasons he compiled a batting average of .258 (1207-for-4686) with 182 doubles, 31 triples, 25 home runs, 386 RBI, 96 stolen bases, 658 walks and 658 strikeouts in 1,495 games. Weiss joins the Rockies after spending last season as the head coach of the Regis Jesuit High School baseball team, leading the Raiders to a 20-6 record and the 5A semi-finals of the state championship.
The Tuxedo, N.Y.. native was a member of four World Series teams, including the 1989 World Champion Oakland Athletics. Weiss was named the 1988 AL Rookie of the Year after hitting .250 (113-for-452) with 17 doubles, 3 triples, 3 home runs and 39 RBI in 147 games, all at shortstop, for the Oakland Athletics. The switch-hitter made his lone All-Star Game appearance in the 1998 game played at Coors Field after a first-half where he hit .286 (34-for-119) with 4 doubles, 2 triples and 10 RBI in 49 games for the Braves.
In his 14 year career, Weiss posted a .970 fielding percentage in 1,462 career games, including turning 854 doubles plays and logging 11,932.1 innings all at shortstop.
Weiss becomes the sixth manager in Rockies franchise history, joining Don Baylor (1993-1998), Jim Leyland (1999) Buddy Bell (2000-2002), Clint Hurdle (2002-09) and Jim Tracy (2009-12).