Originally Posted by Handofdeath
The comments concerning Dusty Baker on this board simply amazes me at times. People thought the Reds were crazy to hire him despite the fact that in 14 seasons his teams had finished 1st 3 times and 6 times finished 2nd. One of the years his team finished 2nd in their division was in 2002 when the Giants actually won the NL. The Giants were up 3 games to 2 and were leading the Angels 5-0 going into the bottom of the 7th when his pitching staff who was 2nd in the NL with an ERA of 3.80 that season absolutely imploded and gave up 3 runs in both the 7th and 8th innings. They cost Dusty Baker his World Series ring. The man is 36th All-Time in wins. Do you realize that if he gets this team to .500 this season and next, which is a very real possibility, he will be 26th all time? One more season like that and he'll be in the Top 25 ALL TIME. 288 more wins and he'll pass Earl Weaver for 20th all time. And yet, people can't stop talking about stupid he is. Are some of his decisions and lineups questionable? Yes. But IMO he has earned the right to be given the benefit of the doubt and I would point out some of the players he's got to work with don't make his job easy.
Having 2 of the best young pitchers in the game and some other pretty good players (with Chicago) will help that. Having the best (or 2nd best) offensive player of all time (although he reached that position by cheating), as well as an ace and a top closer, and some other good players will help that too.
Those teams won despite Dusty. Patterson and Janish both have OBPs under .300, and they're getting the most ABs in any game. They're our 2 worst hitters besides our pitchers (and hell, now Arroyo has 1 more HR than Janish), and they're our table setters. Then he leaves in both with runners on in a tie game, with Jay Bruce, perhaps our best hitter, sitting on the bench. Thankfully, Janish was able to work a walk and BP saved us. Everything worked out, but it was like having 19 in a game of 21, hitting, and getting a 2: just because it happened to work out this time does not mean it wasn't a completely terrible call.
And then, after all that, he pinch hits Bruce to start the next inning, when we're now up 4 runs, and he rips a double.
Please, someone, justify these moves.