More Manager Musings
Had a great day in Houston on Tuesday — both literally on the show “Great Day Houston” and then with a fantastic evening event with Astros’ broadcast wonder Julia Morales. This was the end of Phase 1 of the book tour, which means (1) I can go home, and, you know, write my next book, WHY WE LOVE FOOTBALL, and (2) You get a break from my constant tour updates. These last few weeks of meeting so many of you, hearing your stories, doing so much talking, have been utterly exhausting and utterly unforgettable. I’ll cherish them forever.
And then, when baseball comes back next spring, I’ll be right back on the road. I’ll remind you when we get there, I’m sure.
I had a fascinating conversation on Tuesday with a baseball executive about managing … and what makes a good managerial hire. We talked about how it comes down to so many things that what you really need is a manager rubric with a countless number of categories — how does the manager relate to players, how does the manager relate to management, how stubborn or open-minded is the manager tactically, how aggressive or conservative is the manager tactically, how well does the manager stand up under pressure, how good is the manager with the media, what does it even mean to BE good with the media, and so on and so on, forever.
And then, you have to ask: What does it even mean to do a good job?
Skip Schumaker won the National League Manager of the Year award on Tuesday. It was a crazy vote — SIX different managers got a first-place vote — but Schumaker appeared on 24 of the 30 ballots, by far the most of anybody. There was no consensus on who the NL Manager of the Year is because, as we talk about, nobody has come to any real agreement on how we measure managerial success. But Schumaker was the closest thing to a consensus in the vote.
There’s so much to say about this, beginning with this crazy managerial brain teaser:
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