Five Questions for Bob Melvin
Photo courtesy of The Oakland Athletics
Last year, Oakland Athletics manager Bob Melvin led the team to its first postseason appearance since 2014—a performance that earned him the American League Manager of the Year Award. However, baseball isn’t Melvin’s only passion: The year-round East Bay resident (and Bay Area native) is also an investor in The Wolf, an acclaimed restaurant on Oakland’s Piedmont Avenue. Diablo caught up with Melvin to talk baseball and food.
Q: You’ve won Manager of the Year honors three times now: with the A’s in 2018 and 2012, and with the Arizona Diamondbacks in 2007. How does your most recent award differ from the previous two?
A: I’d trade in all three for a [World Series ring]. A Manager of the Year Award is truly a team award. There isn’t another individual award that exemplifies what an entire organization has accomplished. [From the front office to] the coaching staff that works with our players, and certainly the players—it really becomes a team award.
Q: What was the highlight of your off-season?
A: Seeing [first baseman] Matt Olson and [third baseman] Matt Chapman get Gold Glove awards. When guys who are deserving get that recognition, it is fulfilling to myself and the coaching staff.
Q: How is your second career as a restaurateur going?
A: [Laughs] I’m just a small investor in The Wolf, but it’s doing fantastic. Rich and Rebekah Wood, who run Wood Tavern, have done a great job with [The Wolf]. It is fun to go in and say, “Hey, I’m kind of part of this.”
Q: If you had a day off in the East Bay, where would you go for breakfast, lunch, and dinner?
A: One place for each? The Wolf, Commis, and Wood Tavern. None of which is a breakfast place. If I were doing breakfast, it would probably be Bette’s Oceanview Diner [in Berkeley].
Q: How does the East Bay’s dining scene compare to other places you’ve lived, such as New York City?
A: Oakland is such an exciting place right now; I’ve been seeing articles about it being one of the top five new culinary cities. There are plenty of great places in Rockridge on College Avenue, Uptown Oakland, and Fourth Street in Berkeley. You used to have to go across the Bay for a good meal—that’s not the case anymore. [Oakland is] being celebrated nationwide, and that’s exciting.
The A’s home opener at the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum takes place March 28. mlb.com/athletics.