Blue Jays, manager Gibbons part ways

The Toronto Blue Jays announced Wednesday they will not bring back manager John Gibbons for the 2019 season.

Sep 23, 2018; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Toronto Blue Jays manager John Gibbons goes to blow a bubble with his gum after visiting the mound the in the eighth inning against the Tampa Bay Rays at Rogers Centre. Tampa Bay defeated Toronto. Mandatory Credit: John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports

Gibbons and general manager Ross Atkins held a 25-minute news conference before the final home game of the season Wednesday afternoon to make the announcement.

“It’s probably time for change. We both agreed the time is right,” said Gibbons, who said he isn’t ready to retire. “It’s probably best to bring in a guy that can last a while.”

The Blue Jays are in rebuilding mode.

Gibbons, 56, had one year remaining on his contract but told MLB Network in August, “I’m not sure I want to go through one of those things — a total rebuild.”

The Blue Jays are 71-87 and sit in fourth place in the American League East entering Wednesday’s game against the Houston Astros.

Gibbons led the Jays to the AL Championship Series in both 2015 and 2016, the franchise’s only two playoff appearances since it won back-to-back World Series titles in 1992 and 1993.

He is in his second stint as the Blue Jays’ manager, after holding the post from midway through the 2004 season until his firing in 2008. He was brought back before the 2013 season and has gone 486-482 since, bringing his record to 791-787 with the team.

He first joined the team in 2002 as a bullpen catcher.

—Field Level Media

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