One of the hottest debate topics amongst fans and sportswriters is questioning how a team’s manager really affects the outcome of the game.
For reference, Joe Maddon is hailed as one of the game’s best managers due to his tenure and success with the Tampa Bay Rays. When the Chicago Cubs hired him this past offseason, it was seen as a savvy, progressive move in order to accelerate the Cubs’ process in achieving success on the field.
So far this season, Maddon seems to be pushing all the right buttons and the Cubs seem poised to make a run in October as a result.
Conversely in Washington, Nationals’ manager Matt Williams, who won National League Manager of the Year just this past year, has been criticized highly this season for the team’s struggles and in-game managing situations, most notably with the bullpen.
Robin Ventura has been more comparable to Williams than Maddon in the past couple seasons. I myself wonder how many games could have turned out differently had Ventura made another in-game decision instead of the option he ended up choosing. Ventura’s contract expires at the end of this season and he recently stated that he would like to return.
I don’t want him to return.
This raises the question: Should Ventura be retained as White Sox manager or is it time to look to elsewhere in hopes of achieving success?
In my opinion, Ventura has not shown enough success to warrant an extension. Far more often than not, I watch Ventura make questionable decision after questionable decision. From leaving a starting pitcher in too long to mismanaging his bullpen, Ventura has not shown me enough to earn another contract.
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I didn’t understand the idea of giving a job to someone with no professional managing experience and expecting that to lead to success. The front office brought Ventura in to be a player-friendly manager due to his tenure as a great third baseman and to try and connect with the players but that has led to minimal success on the field.
In his parts of four seasons as manager, Ventura is 271-319 good for only a .459 winning percentage. While this year has been a disappointing showing by some of the players who were thought to compete for an American League Central title this year, there has to be some accountability with the managing staff. Four seasons is PLENTY of time to demonstrate one’s abilities as a manager and Ventura has yet to display any abilities in my opinion.
The White Sox need to finally turn the page on giving former players first dibs on managing gigs and look outside the organization. If this organization is serious about succeeding and sustaining success, Ventura will not be this team’s manager by the start of the 2016 season.
What do you think? Should Ventura be given another chance? Leave a comment below.