As a member of the Baseball Bloggers Alliance, I got a vote in their NL awards. Here's my ballot for Manager of the Year. These awards are for the regular season only, not the playoffs.
1. Jim Tracy, Rockies
Tracy took over a team that was 18-28 and with largely the same players went 74-42 the rest of the way. Colorado remained in the race for the NL West title until the next-to-last day of the regular season and ended up winning the wild card.
2. Tony LaRussa, Cardinals
The Cardinals greatly exceeded most preseason projections to win the NL Central by 7 1/2 games.
3. Fredi Gonzalez, Marlins
Gonzalez won 87 games with a team that had a $35M payroll. The 70-win Mets spent more than that for players on the DL and still ended up paying their healthy players more than 2 1/2 times as much as what Florida paid their whole team.