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Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Dayn Perry: Davey Johnson ... Hall of Famer?

I don’t know. Davey?

The freshly minted NL Manager of the Year for 2012 has indicated that next season will be his last as a major-league skipper. But regardless of how things unfold in 2013, Johnson should absolutely be awarded a plaque in Cooperstown. Consider this sampling of his merits:

  • With a career winning percentage of .564, Johnson ranks 13th on the all-time list (minimum 1,000 games managed).
  • At 291 games over .500 for his career, Johnson ranks 18th all-time. The only names ahead of him who aren’t in the Hall of Fame? Tony La Russa, Bobby Cox and Joe Torre.
  • In Johnson’s 13 full seasons as a major-league manager, he’s suffered exactly one losing season.
  • He’s led four different teams to postseason berths, and he won a World Series with the Mets in 1986.
  •Teams in the year immediately preceding Johnson’s first full season on the job have an average winning percentage of .474. Those same teams in Johnson’s first full season on the job have an average winning percentage of .550.

Throughout his career, Johnson has had a long and proud history of “coaching up” his offenses, and that’s had much to do with his success. On another level, few have been as successful in combining the power of statistics with a traditionalist’s sense of the personalities behind those numbers.

Repoz Posted: November 14, 2012 at 05:52 AM | 12 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: hof

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   1. Bourbon Samurai is disturbed by bagel developments Posted: November 14, 2012 at 06:52 AM (#4302194)
I'd sure like to see him win one more WS and make it official!
   2. John Northey Posted: November 14, 2012 at 08:32 AM (#4302222)
Still annoyed at Gord Ash for not hiring him to run the Blue Jays back in 1998 after the Orioles went belly up (Gillick & Johnson gone then over a decade of sub-500 play). Also cannot understand why teams didn't hire him back in the early 2000's after his last job pre-Washinton. Only once in a full season did his team not finish 1st or 2nd and that year they finished 3rd. Just amazing.
   3. thetailor (Brian) Posted: November 14, 2012 at 12:38 PM (#4302488)
Yes. A hundred times yes! About time somebody pointed this out.
   4. Steve Treder Posted: November 14, 2012 at 12:52 PM (#4302500)
Teams in the year immediately preceding Johnson’s first full season on the job have an average winning percentage of .474. Those same teams in Johnson’s first full season on the job have an average winning percentage of .550.


Of all the impressive things about Johnson's record, this is the most impressive. He's Billy Martin without the subsequent collapse.
   5. OsunaSakata Posted: November 14, 2012 at 12:59 PM (#4302511)
Davey lost a daughter and a stepson who both died in their early 30s. He also had five stomach surgeries to fix an undiagnosed ruptured appendix. Davey had managed the Dutch and U.S. national teams in various tournaments during the 2000s. His wife said that after the stepson died and Davey had heart surgery, he suddenly had more energy he didn't have in previous years.
   6. BDC Posted: November 14, 2012 at 12:59 PM (#4302512)
As came up re: Lou Piniella's candidacy, there basically aren't any managers in the HOF with only one pennant (who aren't in overwhelmingly as players). There are only two in with just two: Al Lopez and Wilbert Robinson. It's harder to win a pennant nowadays … or is it? There are still two of them every year, just as there always were. Somebody wins them; both managers in this year's WS had just collected their third. Ron Washington's won two, Charlie Manuel … it's not like it's unheard of nowadays.

Johnson's case is largely based on being able to take over just about any team and win; in that respect he's very like Billy Martin, who has two pennants and is not in the HOF; their career W/L records are currently very similar, Johnson's a hair better. Both were also good at getting fired, though Johnson, to be fair, is just independent-minded. Martin was a nightmare.

Edit: Another Coke on Steve Treder's lengthy tab
   7. zack Posted: November 14, 2012 at 01:46 PM (#4302561)
Does Johnson's playing career do anything for his managerial bid? Unlike most of his contemporaries, Cox, Larussa, Leyland, Cholly, Pinella (less so) he was a real player, 13 seasons, 4-time AS, 25-35 WAR (depending who you ask). History remembers him mostly for the fluke homerun season, which wouldn't help.

I suppose if you're going to allow minor credit for playing careers like that then it would make Torre a slam dunk, if he isn't already.
   8. Steve Treder Posted: November 14, 2012 at 01:58 PM (#4302573)
I suppose if you're going to allow minor credit for playing careers like that then it would make Torre a slam dunk, if he isn't already.

I would, and in my mind Torre is a slam dunk. It only seems reasonable to consider the entire "body of work."
   9. SoSH U at work Posted: November 14, 2012 at 02:15 PM (#4302594)

I would, and in my mind Torre is a slam dunk. It only seems reasonable to consider the entire "body of work."


Dusty Baker enthusiastically agrees.
   10. BDC Posted: November 14, 2012 at 02:23 PM (#4302602)
Torre would have to be a HOF manager if he'd never played a day.

Davey Johnson was as almost good a ballplayer as Red Schoendienst, who is the pattern of the half-and-half HOFer. But Schoendienst was somewhat better with the glove, played quite a bit longer (at least in the US), and won two pennants to Johnson's one. Nevertheless, Johnson is most of the way to as good an overall record as Schoendienst, particularly given his success with several clubs.
   11. DL from MN Posted: November 14, 2012 at 02:34 PM (#4302621)
Torre is HOF qualified as a player AND as a manager. And he's not in.
   12. Jarrod HypnerotomachiaPoliphili (TeddyF.Ballgame) Posted: November 14, 2012 at 03:04 PM (#4302677)
He also had five stomach surgeries to fix an undiagnosed ruptured appendix.


It took five surgeries to figure this out? Was the physician Dr. Nick Riviera?

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