It’s that time of the year again. The Tigers are out of the playoffs, the Twins have been swept, and many of us Bengal lovers are still trying to recover (including yours truly). As a member of the new Baseball Bloggers Alliance, I am lucky to have an out still from talking Tigers. As the post season continues, the BBA Awards begin, recapping the 2009 baseball season. Today, I insert my ballot for Manager of the Year. In the American League, there are so many options to nominate in the top three. None of them are named Jim Leyland. Here is my ballot for the Manager of the Year Award.
Manager Of The Year:-
3.) Joe Girardi, Yankees- Sure, his players make more than the state of New York combined. Sure, they were picked as one of the favorites to win the American League East. As we all know, that can be the hardest thing to contend with for a full season. Take the Yankees last year. Girardi had the hardest time bringing his players together. No matter how much money you make, when a 162 game schedule is in front of you, injuries are going to happen. You are going to hit dead spots. Girardi held strong all season. Detroit fans can remember the last time a team was expected to be in the hunt for the World Series and an easy division championship (2008, remember that horrid year????). Girardi at least deserves to be thrown in talks of manager of the year.
2. Ron Gardenhire, Twins- Any time your team wins 80% of their games down the stretch and makes a run into the playoffs after being as far out as they were, the manager of that team has to be in talks. WIthout Joe Mauer and with continuous starting pitching issues, the Twins made an improbable run that included a win in the 163rd and most exciting game of the regular season. Any time you piece together a contender with a rotation that includes Carl Pavano, something is going right. There is no doubt that Joe Mauer has a lot to do with it, but like always Gardenhire gave his squad the perfect motivation and instruction to get in the playoffs. There is no doubt that Gardenhire will get some consideration in the BBA for the Manager of the Year
1. Mike Scioscia, Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim- He started the season with a pieced together starting rotation. John Lackey was still on the shelf. Frankie Rodriguez made his way to the big apple. So did the Angels power in 2008, Mark Teixeira. Even without those missing links, the Angels did more than compete. Once again they dominated the AL West down the stretch. Hitters who had disappeared over the years stepped up in major roles. The Angels were easily the best managed team, and that is after the tragic loss of Nick Adenhart. Scioscia found a way to keep this team together at every single defining point of the season. At some point it goes beyond the game of baseball. Keeping these guys together to make a playoff win, after so many counted them out is award deserving. Mike Scioscia and the Angels did it successfully this season one base at a time. He is MCB’s choice as the BBA Manager of the Year.