1. He was a winner. No matter where he went.
The uniform may have changed a few times over the course of his 27-year managerial career, but Jim Leyland's facial expression and ability to turn talent into a team certainly hasn't. He won NL Manager of the Year twice with the Pittsburgh Pirates. He won the 1997 World Series with the Florida Marlins merely five years after the expansion team came into existence. And he helped a Detroit Tigers franchise that hadn't had a winning season in over a decade become one of MLB's elite teams. He is 15th in all-time wins and a coaching legend — and we're running low on legends.
2. No one gets ejected like Jim Leyland anymore.
3. His unapologetic love of cigarettes.
4. His loyalty and humility.
5. His great sense of humor.
6. He respects "God Bless America."
7. He gave the city of Detroit a reason to cheer and be proud.
Before Jim Leyland arrived in Detroit, they hadn't finished above .500 in 12 seasons. In his first year they went to the World Series. Over the course of his tenure, he led the Tigers to three consecutive ALCS appearances and two trips to the World Series. The team went from a national joke to a source of civic pride.
8. He was a badass.
9. His legendary dance moves.
There is nothing better than watching a 68-year-old man moonwalk poorly.
10. He was passionate.
Jim Leyland has spent over 30 years yelling and stomping around baseball diamonds, but deep down Leyland was a softy — especially later in his Tigers tenure.