October 27, 2006

THE PERILS OF HIRING A GUY YOU CAN'T FIRE:

Yankees reportedly will promote Mattingly to bench coach next year (Providence Journal, October 27, 2006)

Don Mattingly will take over as bench coach for the New York Yankees next season, replacing Lee Mazzilli, according to a newspaper report.

The move puts Mattingly one step closer to manager Joe Torre's job, making him the favorite to take over when the long-time skipper leaves, according to the report, posted last night on Newsday's Web site.


Keith Olbermann, who follows the Yankees almost as closely as he does the rise of fascism in America, has stated in no uncertain terms that Mattingly is incapable of leading a team, just because of the nature of his personality.

Posted by Orrin Judd at October 27, 2006 9:33 AM
Comments

You think Olbermann is a sound judge of character?

Posted by: pj at October 27, 2006 10:52 AM

Of sports.

Posted by: oj at October 27, 2006 10:56 AM

I wonder how much Keith Olbermann would like to go into announcing baseball games. I hear FOX Sports essentially has a vacant spot for play-by-play, as Joe Buck is getting a little overused.

Posted by: Brad S at October 27, 2006 11:32 AM

There exists a man that George Steinbrenner can't fire?

Posted by: Brandon at October 27, 2006 12:31 PM

Oh, I can just imagine Olbermann calling a ball game.

"Count is three and one, this at-bat is a real quagmire for Rodney, this crowd here at Tiger Stadium certainly not welcoming the right-handed neocon as a liberator. Here's the windup, and the pitch -- Polanco smacks it deep to center field, Edmonds back at the wall . . . robbed him! It was going over the wall, and Edmonds reaches out and grabbed it like a member of the Bush administration stealing our civil liberties! Six innings over, it's Insurgents--er, I mean Tigers two, Fasc--er, Cardinals, nothing. . . ."

Posted by: Mike Morley at October 27, 2006 12:31 PM

Two: Guidry and Mattingly who both would have been canned otherwise after this year's awful performances.

Posted by: oj at October 27, 2006 12:36 PM

"Keith Olbermann, who follows the Yankees almost as closely as he does the rise of fascism in America"

You mean the Yankees don't exist, but are only a figment of the imagination of deluded paranoid ranters? That's a relief. I hope the same thing is true of the Cowboys & Notre Dame football...

Posted by: b at October 27, 2006 1:30 PM

"You think Olbermann is a sound judge of character?"
-- Posted by: pj at October 27, 2006 10:52 AM

"Of sports."
-- Posted by: oj at October 27, 2006 10:56 AM

But the issue is one of Mattingly's character and leadership abilities, regardless of whether the organization plays baseball or markets widgets. On that matter, I would pay Olbermann no heed. He could be right or wrong, but so could a coin flip.

Given Olbermann's demonstrated approach to life, it's quite possible that Mattingly once said something less than hateful about Bush, even just off-handedly. That'd be more than enough to turn Olbermann against him.

Posted by: ras at October 27, 2006 1:43 PM

"This year's awful performances"?

Overcoming the loss of 2 all-star outfielders and an ill-put together pitching staff to finish with the best record in their league?

Yep, awful.

Posted by: Jim in Chicago at October 27, 2006 2:11 PM

No, Mattingly's character doesn't matter, just his ability to manage a team. There are plenty of good managers with lousy character and vice versa.

Posted by: oj at October 27, 2006 2:45 PM

I haven't read or heard Olberman on the subject, but I don't know why he thinks Mattingly isn't suited for the job. In fact, I recall guys like Paul O'Neill (who wasn't too popular with his teammates in Cinncinati) and Wade Boggs (the iconic selfish player) both crediting Mattingly with setting the tone in the Yankee clubhouse that led to their long run of success. (They had the best record in the AL when the '94 season was cut short by the lockout, and they made the playoffs in '95 for the first time in 13 years.)

Posted by: Foos at October 27, 2006 2:46 PM

Actually, doesn't even Buster Olney say that Mattingly was too quiet and reserved to set the tone for the team, setting an example instead? Note they've never won with him.

Posted by: oj at October 27, 2006 2:54 PM

Uh, guys, you may have noticed that Orrin is a Red Sox fan. He'll say nice things about Don (Mr. Yankee) Mattingly right after Andrew Sullivan opposes gay marriage.

Posted by: Casey Abell at October 27, 2006 3:01 PM

I like Mattingly a lot--I just don't see how he can manage a team if he never criticizes anyone for anything.

Posted by: oj at October 27, 2006 4:06 PM

Aren't Torre, Cashman, and Steinbrenner a little closer to the situation, and don't they know Mattingly better, than Olbermann, Buster Olney, & oj? I don't trust Olbermann's judgment on anything, but when it's combined with ignorance and disagreed with by those in the know, you have to bet against him.

Posted by: pj at October 27, 2006 4:07 PM

No. If Torre knew anything he wouldn't be so dependent on bench coaches and Cashman jumps as high as George tells him to.

Posted by: oj at October 27, 2006 4:17 PM

All sorts of personalities succeed as managers. Look at Walter Alston. Quiet, quiet guy. He did ok.

It is not personality but knowledge that matters. The ability to evaluate players and pick good coaches for instance.


Posted by: Bob at October 27, 2006 4:43 PM

Mattingly will succeed if Sandy Koufax magically joins the club in spring training.

Posted by: oj at October 27, 2006 4:53 PM

It's always possible that Olbermann caught Mattingly with a Bush/Cheney bumper sticker on his car. In Keith's eyes, that would not only disqualify him from managing, but put him in sub-Barry Bonds territory as a human being.

Posted by: John at October 28, 2006 2:02 AM
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