07/04/09 5:00 PM ET
Padres skipper likely to get extension
Club's brass enthused with Black's performance at helm
By Corey Brock / MLB.com
"He certainly warrants an extension," Towers said prior to Saturday's game against the Dodgers at PETCO Park. "I personally feel he's done his best job of managing this year in the three years he has been here ... considering the product, the inexperience, youth, the injuries that he's had to deal with.
"To keep this team competitive, he's done a very nice job."
San Diego took a 34-45 record into Saturday's game against the Dodgers, and the club was 16 1/2 games behind Los Angeles in the National League West.
Black is 186-218 in 2 1/2 seasons. This season, he has had to deal with a rash of injuries, as three members of the projected Opening Day starting rotation -- Jake Peavy, Chris Young and Cha Seung Baek -- have missed a combined 118 games.
Shortstop Everth Cabrera missed 52 games with a broken hamate bone, and outfielder Scott Hairston missed 16 games in June when the team went 9-19.
Towers commended Black for everything from his relationship with his players to two new members of the coaching staff [hitting coach Jim Lefebvre and bench coach Ted Simmons] and his ability to continue to learn the NL.
"I think he's shown a little more emotion this year. He's a little more comfortable in his shoes," Towers said.
Towers said discussions on extending Black's contract -- a three-year deal he signed before his first season in 2007 -- started in Spring Training, though Black never once brought up the subject.
"He's handled it like a champ," Towers said. "From the conversations I've had with Jeff [Moorad], he's been very pleased [with Black]."
Corey Brock is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.