Saturday, June 20, 2009

Don't Blame The Grinder

Look. Here is the thing. We all know that unless the Indians make some sort of miracle push to an AL Central Title that skipper Eric "Grind Master Flash" Wedge is going to get fired. I think he is a good manager and have defended him time and time again in this space. The Wahoos 29-40 record is disgusting and the performance of the bullpen has smelled even worse. Take Friday's 8-7 loss at Wrigley as your latest example; but somebody please tell me how that game's blood is on Wedge's hands?

Fans do not like Wedge's delivery. Fans always clamor for change when a coach or manager has been around seven years. Fans want a guy who will throw his hat in the dugout or run around the diamond chasing umpires. That is not Wedge. I really don't care what the fans want, because I believe most tribe fans never even knew baseball existed before 1994. I hate to sound like a snob, but where were all of you guys at the old stadium when I was a kid? My dad, brother, and I used to sit in the upper level, section 18, and on most Saturdays at the ballpark, we had the row and half of the section to ourselves. I am now off the tracks here, I apologize. My point is that fans want to replace Wedge, yet none of them have an alternative.

In Detroit, the Tigers just handed Jim Leyland a two year extension. This comes off of a last place season in 2008 and a 5-6 road trip this season with his team just two games ahead of Minnesota for first place in the worst division of all-time. Leyland is still managing this club because they respond to him and he has kept the ship afloat. Sound familiar?

If the Tribe players have quit, I don't see it. If they stopped listening to Wedge or "tuned him out" as Jim Ingraham suggested in the News-Herald, than how come they scored 12 runs the other night against Milwaukee and 7 in the early stages of yesterday's loss to the Cubs? What is Eric supposed to do up 7-2 in the 8th yesterday? Is he supposed to tell the umpires that HE will pitch the eighth instead of Joe Smith or Rafael Perez? (I would not have used Perez in that spot btw). It wasn't Wedge who went out and traded for Smith. The man has tried everything and now has gone to great lengths to even go public with some of his frustration with certain players. Good! Why not? We all see it. You can only use so much lipstick to try and dress up this pig.

I like the fact that this team plays hard day in and day out. I grew up watching some real dog teams and some real dog managers (John McNamara for one). Wedge makes mistakes, but I am sticking with him. I am not "giving in to the fight". Today he has to send Tomo Ohka to the mound at that bandbox in Chicago. I guess we keep grinding and pray.

1 comment:

aFILMic said...

The argument now isn't whether or not Wedge is a good manager (I say he's not), but whether change is simply needed. And I would say it is. Look at the Rockies since they fired Hurdle. Look at how the Cleveland bats got going after they fired Eddie Murray in 2005. Change can be a major catalyst, that's why Wedge has to go now while there is still a chance.