I am not a baseball general manager. I never will be a baseball general manager. So I definitely do not know all the ins and outs of running a successful team.
But as a writer, a fan, and a knowledgeable baseball person, I reserve the right to question things that I hear, especially when it relates to the Jays.
So here is one huge question: Bobby Valentine?
Upon hearing this morning that he was interviewed for Toronto’s vacant managerial position I was shocked. I can’t say (or pretend to say) that I know what goes on behind the scenes in baseball clubhouses and dugouts, but on the surface Valentine seems to be a curious decision.
The Jays are a young team, with a relaxed and loose clubhouse, who thrived last year under a relaxed manager. Not to say they wouldn’t thrive under a manager who was harder and more direct, but Valentine has created tension everywhere he’s been, be it with coaches, players, fans, or owners.
But, for fun, here is a quick run-down on Valentine – the Good, the Bad, the Amazing.
– 15 years of experience
– Over .500 career record (1.1117 – 1,072)
– Two playoff appearances (1999, 2000 with the Mets)
– Zero World Series titles
– Fired by three different teams (Rangers, Mets, Chibba Lotte)
– Feuded with GM Tatsuro Hirooka in Japan leading to his firing
– Volatile relationsip with Mets GM Steve Phillips, which lead to his firing
– Seems to be going senile after picking Jose Ortiz to win this year’s HR Derby
– I would take back all my criticisms of Valentine if he promised to repeat the shenanigans of June 9, 1999 if hired by the Jays.
That day, he was ejected from a game, but amazingly returned to the dugout a few innings later, in “disguise”:
What a fake moustache! What a managerial move!