It’s About Damn Time: Return of the Player Manager

Pete Rose killed a lot of things: Betting on baseball, Cincinnati pride and dinosaurs, to name three. But not everything he touched went extinct. Until today, I thought this special subset – things Rose didn’t kill – was limited to hot Asian women liking old white men with money. But no, OH NO, there’s one more entry for that category… THE PLAYER-MANAGER.

And who else to pick up where Rose left off than baseball’s other most-controversial once-superstar: Jose Canseco.

The Yuma Scorpions, an independent team with a big-league idea for a gimmick, named Canseco both manager and all-around bad ass. Their reasoning? Easy: “He’s very ready at this point in his career to smoothly transition to managing.” Yes. at THIS point.

But Canseco aside, it brings up a very important question, one that should be thought of somewhere between how to solve the national debt and how many licks it takes to get to the center of a Tootsie Roll pop (it’s not three, don’t proffer up that malarkey)…That is, who would you (more importantly me, as I’m writing this) like to see as the next player managers?

So, without further ado (and a pay-per-word agreement) I’ll cut to the chase.

Top Five:

5. Kirk Gibson. If the man could hit a home run half gimp in 1988, the 53-year-old second year manager of the D-backs surely could make a contribution.

4. Texas General Manager Jon Daniels. At 33, he’s really only a few years past his prime. And with his body type, his skill set should be deteriorating slowly… right, Jon?

3. Charlie Manuel. Father Time could probably teach these whipper snappers a thing or two… Unless that thing has anything to do with using statistics in managing a team?

2. Ozzie Guillen. Rumor has it he’s three parts man and one part honey badger. If you know anything about the honey badger you know it’s not their size or their age that matters, they’ve got a fight in them measured only by the kiloton.

1. Obviously, Don Mattingly. This by no means is a criticism of James Loney. It’s not that I don’t like the guy – in fact, I think he’s a great person on tops of a being a darn good ball player. But you have to ask yourself this one question: Was he ever on the Simpsons? Has he jacked six grand slams in one year? Is his last name “Baseball”? No. Donnie Baseball is the clear choice.

Who would you like to see bring back the player manager?

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8 Responses to “It’s About Damn Time: Return of the Player Manager”

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  1. Anthony says:

    Hilarious. “Is his last name “Baseball”? No.” killed me. Well done!

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  2. manuscript says:

    I’ll take John Rocker. Granted, he’s not, nor will he ever be, a big league manager. BUT… It sure would add fireworks in the dugout. Imagine him seeing a pitcher give up a lead, call time, storm out of the dugout, throw the jacket down, berate the pitcher on the mound and demand that he give over his glove. Rocker would then proceed to warm up and throw wild pitches over batters’ heads until he was ejected from the game.

    No, it wouldn’t be “the game the way it was meant to be played” but it sure would be worth watching once or twice.

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  3. Dusto says:

    Actually Loney is a miserable baseball player. It couldn’t possibly be any worse than the situation he was in a few nights ago: tie game, 11th inning, no outs, Uribe on second, and Mattingly asks him to bunt… and of-course he couldn’t get it down and eventually popped out. Loney is supremely overrated.

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    • Joe P. says:

      Yeah. James Loney is brutal. His OPS was third-worst among qualified first basemen last year and has a three-year average OPS of .750. Donnie Baseball probably still has more juice in his bat than Loney ever will.

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  4. Ryan says:

    Now that Billy Beane has learned the value of a walk…

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  5. robertobeers says:

    Wrong honey badger video, Patty.
    You’re welcome.

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  6. ralf says:

    Active players: Matt Stairs, Craig Counsell, Jason Varitek, Omar Vizquel.

    I’ve always wondered, in the old days of player-managers, what it was like in the dugout when a manger put himself in to pinch hit. I like to imagine the guy looking down the bench at the four other available players, then sort of wincing, shaking his head, and trotting out to the on-deck circle.

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  7. gabriel says:

    John McDonald could do well as a defensive replacement/emergency SS for a few more years, and seems to have the stature to manage. More Johnny Mac!

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