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"Lou is not talking about mechanics when he goes out to the mound,"
~Chicago Cubs pitching coach Larry Rothschild

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Coaching Carousel

We are all of 3 days into the offseason for 24 teams in MLB. So far we've seen Jack McKeon, Alan Trammell, Ken Macha, and Jim Tracy either "retire", "fail to reach an agreement" or "step down" from their managerial positions. First off, doesn't anyone get fired anymore? Has our country become so sensitive and politically correct that we can no longer use that word? Where's Donald Trump when you need him? There should be no shame in outright firing somebody who didn't fulfill the job up to your expectations. Why can't we bask in people's failures, kick them while their down, add insult to injury? If Packers GM Ted Thompson ever decides to pull the plug on Mike Sherman, he better not "come to terms". If Thompson too much of a whimp to do it I will. I might even make a joke out of it. Hey Mike! Knock, knock. "Who's there?" You're fired! Now clean out your office and get out of Green Bay.

Enough ranting. Do all these guys deserve the boot? Probably not. Jim Tracy hasn't had much to work with, especially if you take into account all the injuries they had this year. I know it's no big surprise that J.D. Drew missed 90 games, but had he stayed healthy, he would have made a huge difference. Through 70 games he was hitting .286/.412/.520 with 15 hrs. Milton Bradley missed half the season. Gagne only pitched 13 innings and Driefort missed the entire season. What do you want Jim to do?

It doesn't really matter who's in the Oakland dugout. Nothing against Macha, I'm sure he's a fine manager. But in Oakland the manager is just Billy Beane's puppet. Sure he makes the in-game calls, but those calls are in direct line with what Billy wants. The next manager out there will be a guy who comes cheap and who is willing to take the back seat to Billy. Macha's agent stated that the Marlins are interested in setting up an interview sometime next week. It could be a good fit, but like I said, I don't think we've really seen what Macha is capable of doing.

The Jack McKeon situation out in Florida seems a bit strange to me. I've had complaints with the way he handled his young pitching staff, much like Dusty Baker. But if you look at the Big Three's second half ERAs, the biggest dropoff is half a run. That belongs to Dontrelle Willis and it was still under 3.00. So it appears there might not be any truth to the pitch count theory. Or as i believe, it will simply catch up to them in future years. Only time will tell.

Dave Dombrowski has already replaced Alan Trammell with former Marlins manager Jim Leyland. I must plead a bit of ignorance on Trammell's managing ability. I do know that 2 years ago they were an embarassment and they are now competetive. Did I miss something? They seemed to be on the rise in an improved and underrated division. Maybe Dombrowski just wanted to bring back his old running buddy from Miami Beach.

Will there be anymore changes this winter. Cubs fans are calling for Dusty Baker's head. I think he'll get one more year to turn things around. Sorry, Graham. I think you're stuck. Ozzie says that if the Sox win the Series he might call it quits. Somehow I don't see either of those 2 things happening. I've heard the rumors of Sweet Lou wearing pinstripes next year. I don't buy into that. Steinbrenner may be alot of things, but a fool he's not. He understands the importance of Torre in the clubhouse.

I think this might be it for the coaching changes. The only thing to follow from here is who fills the vacanicies.

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