Re: Dusty Baker: Teflon Manager
I think Dusty baker is an overall Above Average Baseball Manager.
As a Manager, he is GREAT. Managing players year-round, giving them pep-talks, keeping them motivated, massaging egos/kicking butt as needed per player/situation/dependencies/etc... he is probably in the top 2%.
As a BASEBALL Manager, he is Below Average. Putting together a roster, putting players in the right position in the lineups to maximize their skills and the end result of victories, etc, he is sorely lacking on a number of fronts. He is Great at working with players on certain techniques, attitude, demeanor, etc, but metrics/statistics/etc WAY below average.
However, I think his SUPERIOR People-Management helps overcome his Baseball Statistical inferiority, to make him an Above Average Manager. Not Great, not even Borderline Great. His players, on the majority, will probably have a better year, individually, if looked at in a vacuum. However, putting them all together in the right lineup, etc, will not help the TEAM.
Can he take a talented team and get the most out of the INDIVIDUAL players to get them over the hump if they have been underacheiving? Yes. Can he take a talented team that is already doing well and/or a POTENTIALLY good team and get the most out of them as Individuals AND as a Team? My guess is probably not. Any gains he might get out of such a team at the individual level would be minimal compared to the potential damage he might bring to the team from a strategy/metrics/playing crappy veterans over potential youth perspective.
Just my $.02
If you think the Reds are a talented team that Underacheived last year, then you should have some hope. If you think the Reds SUCKED last year, and got better under Miley because he helped People Manage a lot better and only slightly in the strategy department, then you probably look at the lack of major changes to the 2008 roster and say Dusty Baker isn't going to get us over the hump in and off itself.
I think that in a year or two, one of these guys - Frazier, Dorn, Valaika, Cumberland, Stubbs - will be ready to replace Dunn. They won't hit as many home runs as Dunn, but they should have similar OPS. - 757690, July 22, 2008
Alonso will be playing 1B for the REDS and batting 4th one year from today. - Kingspoint, July 9, 2009