Originally Posted by NeilHamburger
I've heard quite a few people mention Rolen as a potential coach and eventual manager.
This from from a Fay chat on the Enquirer site in mid January on that subject:
He doesn't want to coach. As he said, "you won't see me swinging a fungo for a living.".
I was not aware of this quote and it changes the way I view the situation dramatically.
In a thread on the Deck, I talked about Rolen's leadership being in the elite category, but I had a concern that his leadership may depend on his self-image as a successful ballplayer. This fungos quote confirms that to me.
If you have a great "charge the hill" type leader under a calm, unflappable stay the course type manager like Baker, younger and/or leadable players will over-achieve, like in 2010. (This is the leadership model militaries have often used... the fiery Sergeant and the calm, collected Commander). However, if that charge the hill clubhouse leader loses the skills that give him his confidence and gusto, his own frustration/depression can spread like wildfire to the impressionable, even if he is seldom playing.
This caused me to look into last year closer. Rolen's first three monthly OPS's were .579, .427 & .590. After Votto was injured, Rolen stepped up and OPSd .922 and .925 in July and August. Once Votto returned his OPS plummeted to .545 in September.
Prior to this, I thought, like everyone else, this huge swing was caused by health issues. Now I wonder. I wonder if the older, more broken down Scott is the type who can only elevate his game when it falls on him to lead others...
I am starting to think that Rolen as a back-up is a .550 OPS player... Scott maybe just can't be a #2... (he said he would never be a coach, but I am guessing he could see himself as a manager.) Worse, I am concerned that if Rolen gets frustrated and/or depressed based on his lack of ability and opportunity to perform, this will affect other players in the clubhouse. Votto, great player that he is, is too emotionally vulnerable to avoid being affected by watching his mentor mentally fall apart before his eyes.
Just my 2 cents.