In just his third season at the helm of the Tribe, 52-year-old Cleveland manager Doc Edwards is fired after a disappointing midseason collapse by the club. He is replaced in the dugout by 41-year-old John Hart, a former minor league manager and coach for the Baltimore Orioles.
Edwards had taken over the managerial position midway through the 1987 season, replacing Pat Corrales. He was approaching the end of his second one-year contract with the club after a sixth place 78-84 season in his first full season as manager for the Indians, one in which he guided the club to a 17-game improvement over the previous season. Cleveland had reached the .500 mark at 54-54 on August 4, 1989, and at the time was just one and a half games out of first place, but fell apart afterwards, going 11-24 to fall 14.5 games behind the American League East leaders while costing Edwards his job.
Hart, who joined the Indians for the 1989 season, had previously worked with the Orioles while Cleveland president Hank Peters was the club’s general manager. He will manage a total of 19 games in his Major League coaching career, going 8-11 while keeping the seat warm in Cleveland. Hart will be considered for the position for the 1990 season, along with Indians Triple-A manager and long-time first baseman Mike Hargrove and former Indians catcher Lou Piniella.