Thursday, May 14, 2009

In The Doghouse: Ron Gardenhire

Ron Gardenhire's consistent mismanagement of the Minnesota Twins earns him a permanent place in The Doghouse. A manager only capable of winning division titles and nothing else, Gardenhire provides Twins fans constant frustration. A terrible player in his own right (think Nick Punto in a double-knit uniform), Gardenhire has no real skills to impart to his players and thrives mainly on being a clubhouse guy, a "player's manager." A good baseball manager, on the other hand, is a shrewd strategist -- a chess player, if you will -- and by the first seven-plus seasons as a manager, we are well aware of the fact that Ron Gardenhire is a horrible chess player. Gardenhire's real talents as a baseball man are in other areas -- scout, bench coach, cheerleader -- and his current title only hampers the Twins chances of real success (a World Series title). Unfortunately, Twins fans and Twins executives adore Gardenhire, mainly because his tenure started on the heels of the team being a perennial doormat, and three division titles in a row was a sign of success. Those three years were a real success, but in the seasons after -- especially 2006 -- have been a major disappointment, and Gardenhire's lack of in-game management have become startingly evident. Gardenhire must go, and until then he has a permanent spot in The Doghouse.

No comments: