Detroit — This is the time of year to wonder if the Tigers' coaching staff will return intact.
And because of the success of the team, it stands to reason it will. But there is a reason why it might not.
Getting hired elsewhere would be that reason.
One can envision a couple of the Tigers' coaches at least being interviewed for whatever managerial openings there will be this winter.
Omar Vizquel, who has proven this season how creative first-base coaches can be, is major-league managing material and certainly has the desire to do so.
In fact, it's no secret Vizquel wants to manage at the major-league level at some point — and that his wait might not take long. He was known as a smart player all those years he played shortstop, and certainly would not be overmatched as a major-league manager.
No doubt there would be growing pains for him, though, as there are for every manager — meaning there are things Brad Ausmus wishes he hadn't said or done this season. But the fact is that Ausmus' first year at the helm has been relatively stumble free.
On a stop in Cleveland this season, Vizquel told television station WKYC about managing, "I hope that I have that opportunity some day. I'm preparing myself for it.
"Right now, I'm learning a lot and I am with a great group of coaches that can help me out to accomplish that."
Vizquel has had flair as a Tigers' coach, however. His willingness to take a chance was recently seen in a game at Kansas City, when he sent catcher Bryan Holaday from first to second as a throw came in on a routine fly ball to left.
J.D. Martinez was on third at the time, but didn't tag up on the play.
The fact that Holaday was running on the throw, however, so distracted Mike Moustakas at third that he botched the throw for an error which allowed Martinez to score.
Holaday said after the game "that was all Omar."
Another Tigers' coach who might get some attention is Dave Clark, who not only has had a fine season as the Tigers' third base coach, but has multiple-level experience in the minors.
Clark served as a short-term interim manager of the Houston Astros in 2009 when Cecil Cooper was fired. But he's also managed at the Single, Double and Triple A levels.
With the Tigers, he's known for being an active coach at third base, but also for being one with excellent judgment.
"I know the outfielders appreciate him because of the work he puts in with them," said Ausmus, "and I know this about him as a third-base coach. He doesn't stand still for more than 10 seconds at a time."
Clark spoke of his desire to be a major-league manager in 2009 when he was considered for Houston's full-time job.
"When I retired as a player and got the chance to coach at the big-league level for a couple of years, I got the fever," he told MLB.com at the time. "I decided after two years of coaching at the big-league level I wanted to manage."
Gene Lamont is another Tigers' coach who could be a managerial candidate, because he's managed for two teams (White Sox and Pirates) already and as recently as the 2012 season he was a finalist for the Boston Red Sox job that went to Bobby Valentine instead.
About to be 68 in December, though, it's uncertain if he will get another opportunity at managing in the majors. In any case, Lamont is scheduled to return for the 2015 season as the Tigers' bench coach.