At the end of the 2015 season, fans were surprised to hear that Brad Ausmus was returning as the manager of the Detroit Tigers. In his first season, the rookie manager surprised everyone with a trip to the playoffs, then disappointed those same fans when his team was swept by the Baltimore Orioles in 2014. During 2015 spring training and in the first few weeks of his second season, it seemed like the Tigers were ready to come out and play. But, as the season progressed, the weaknesses of the team and the manager became crystal clear.
While Ausmus has been lambasted about his ability to manage the bullpen and to work with this starting pitchers, he is not the worst manager the Detroit Tigers have ever seen. In fact, during the 114 years that the Tigers have been an official MLB team, there have been several managers who make Ausmus look like Sparky Anderson (well…not quite).
Interestingly, some of the best managers have actually filled the role of a player at the same time. Most Tigers fans are aware that Ty Cobb and Mickey Cochrane were two of the best players to wear the Old English D. Those two Hall of Fame players also served as managers. Cochrane actually managed his team to the 1935 World Series Championship. Cobb used his grumpy demeanor to managed the Tigers for six years; in all but one of those years, the team finished with a record above .500. These two men seemed to start the trend of hiring players to manage the team; but as time goes on, the player-manager has turned in the retired-player-turned-manager.
To see if Brad Ausmus is really one of the worst managers, it was easy to analyze the statistics and see who really was the worst. Here are the top five in the history of the Tigers:
Next: The Fifth Worst Manager