Baseball for the Thinking Fan

Login | Register | Feedback

btf_logo
You are here > Home > Baseball Newsstand > Baseball Primer Newsblog > Discussion
Baseball Primer Newsblog
— The Best News Links from the Baseball Newsstand

Friday, October 20, 2017

Heyman | Tigers To Hire Ron Gardenhire

The Detroit Tigers have agreed to hire Ron Gardenhire to fill their vacant manager position, a source tells FanRag Sports. Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic was the first to report the news.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 20, 2017 at 09:49 AM | 33 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: managers, ron gardenhire, tigers

Reader Comments and Retorts

Go to end of page

Statements posted here are those of our readers and do not represent the BaseballThinkFactory. Names are provided by the poster and are not verified. We ask that posters follow our submission policy. Please report any inappropriate comments.

   1. fra paolo Posted: October 20, 2017 at 10:33 AM (#5558875)
AFAIK, this hasn't been officially announced, but no-one is denying it.

A week or two ago I announced to a few friends that "If the Tigers hire Lloyd McClendon, Manny Acta or Ron Gardenhire, I'm finding a new team."

There is a long, tortuous history of bust-ups between me and the Tigers, going back to Jim Campbell's days in the early 1970s, and I have no confidence in the Chris Ilitch-Al Avila brains trust.

EDIT: I see there's a press conference been announced for today.
   2. Jeff Francoeur's OPS Posted: October 20, 2017 at 10:40 AM (#5558887)
Gardy is a good guy, so happy to see him get a second chance, but not exactly an inspiring move by the Tigers.
   3. TDF didn't lie, he just didn't remember Posted: October 20, 2017 at 10:41 AM (#5558893)
So Gardenhire might be a good argument for managers making a difference, I think.

While in MIN, his teams regularly outperformed their Pythag record (8 out of 13 seasons) and usually by a lot (8 (his 1st season), 5, 5, 3, 3, 2, 1, and 1 wins vs. -5 (his last season), -2, -1, -1, and -1). If there's something he's doing, that's impressive.
   4. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: October 20, 2017 at 10:48 AM (#5558898)
So Gardenhire might be a good argument for managers making a difference, I think.

While in MIN, his teams regularly outperformed their Pythag record (8 out of 13 seasons) and usually by a lot (8 (his 1st season), 5, 5, 3, 3, 2, 1, and 1 wins vs. -5 (his last season), -2, -1, -1, and -1). If there's something he's doing, that's impressive.


Girardi had a nice run going with the Yankees: since 2008 +2, +8, -2, -4, 0, +6, +7, -1, +5. +21 in total, +2.33 p.a.

Of course, this year's -9 put a huge dent in that.
   5. fra paolo Posted: October 20, 2017 at 11:00 AM (#5558911)
Ausmus, 2014-17
+4
+5
+3
-3

He gets too much grief, IMO.
   6. BDC Posted: October 20, 2017 at 11:01 AM (#5558912)
I opined in a previous Tiger-manager thread that teams should really look at first-time ML managers who've coached for successful teams. OTOH, if you are intent on hiring a "retread," someone like Gardenhire who's had substantial success is a fine idea, too. Obviously it might not work out Рmost managers don't Рbut better Gardenhire than a "retread" with no resum̩ at all.
   7. Jose is an Absurd Doubles Machine Posted: October 20, 2017 at 11:01 AM (#5558913)
Gardenhire doesn't feel like an exciting hire but wasn't his Twins tenure centered on developing young players? That seems like a key part of what the next Tiger manager is going to need to do. It kind of came apart at the end for him and at his age it's a fair question as to whether he's lost his managerial fastball.
   8. Blanks for Nothing, Larvell Posted: October 20, 2017 at 11:08 AM (#5558919)
What they should have done was kept the team together and then hired Gardenhire.
   9. fra paolo Posted: October 20, 2017 at 01:50 PM (#5559058)
So, I watched almost all the press conference. Here's a summary of some of what was said:

Avila highlighted that Gardenhire has "a proven track record" with both young and veteran players.

The first department Gardenhire was introduced to after arriving to accept the job was the analytics department.

Gardenhire said that Leyland and he were great chums, and that even before Leyland left he had told Gardenhire that he wanted Gardy to be his replacement. He went on to say that he had learnt a lot about analytics while working as a bench coach with the Diamondbacks, and that his only claim on being 'old school' was because he had entered the baseball world in an era before analytics, and that it was important to keep learning.

Gardenhire was non-committal about keeping the existing coaches, and commented on how a lot of people looking for a job had been in touch with him. (That's going to make the existing coaches fell comfortable.) A couple of times he said the focus should be on fundamentals, and pitching, and at least had enough fight in him to say 'Who says we have to lose.' He made a joke about being an Okie finding it hard to cope with a word like 'trepidation'and later on an 'I am old' joke.

Avila gave a detailed answer about the process of his hiring. He planned to announce the new hire about now. He started with a list of 47 names, then whittled it down to 12, and then the interview list was of 10 names. (I wonder who were the two who didn't make the cut for interview, and why.) Gardenhire was the last one to be interviewed, and the decision was taken and offer made the day before Gardenhire went to the Red Sox. He didn't make any jokes.

Chris Ilitch was asked about his goals, and he said the overall objective was to make the Tigers consistently competitive World Series contenders. He made a WAR joke.

Boston was apparently not ready to make an offer, as Gardenhire had his agent call the BoSox as soon as he got the offer from the Tigers.

MY HOT TAKE: Avila made it clear from the start that he wanted experience, so we shouldn't be surprised that Gardenhire won out. I suspect Leyland was a very influential voice in this process. However, Avila has also said he wants to make bigger use of analytics. (AFAICT, it's not well-known, but Ausmus was really into an analytical use of video.) I think there is a tension between the desire for analytics and the desire for experience in this particular hire, and it will be interesting to see which wins out.
   10. Greg Pope Posted: October 20, 2017 at 02:09 PM (#5559081)
So Gardenhire might be a good argument for managers making a difference, I think.
While in MIN, his teams regularly outperformed their Pythag record (8 out of 13 seasons) and usually by a lot
---
Girardi had a nice run going with the Yankees: since 2008 +2, +8, -2, -4, 0, +6, +7, -1, +5. +21 in total, +2.33 p.a.

Of course, this year's -9 put a huge dent in that.
---
Ausmus, 2014-17
+4
+5
+3
-3

He gets too much grief, IMO.


WINS VS PYTHAG TO JUDGE A MANAGER IS NOT A THING!!!!!

Dag has weighed in on this. There's no evidence for it. None. Please stop using it.
   11. SoSH U at work Posted: October 20, 2017 at 02:58 PM (#5559135)
WINS VS PYTHAG TO JUDGE A MANAGER IS NOT A THING!!!!!


I agree completely. I don't know why distribution of runs is seen as some managerial skill.
I think it's possible to get your pythag to underperform your wins, but that doesn't really have any value.

I think Girardi is a good manager because guys have an annoying ####### tendency to become better players under his watch than they previously were. I'm not sure about Gardy, and nothing about Ausmus screams good manager.

   12. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: October 20, 2017 at 03:44 PM (#5559172)
I agree completely. I don't know why distribution of runs is seen as some managerial skill.

Because building and managing a bullpen is the single most important managerial job by far. Bullpen performance and use is a determinant of Pythag overperformance.
   13. Jose is an Absurd Doubles Machine Posted: October 20, 2017 at 04:10 PM (#5559188)
Because building and managing a bullpen is the single most important managerial job by far.


No it's not. Getting his team to play as well as they can is the single most important managerial job by far. Managing a bullpen is probably the most important in game function of a manager but a manager does more than that. If by getting players into a position of success, properly resting them, finding good matchups, that kind of thing results in every player on the roster playing to his best ability then that is critical.

Using Pythag means that Joe Girardi gets punished for getting as much as he got out of his players this year which seems nonsensical.
   14. SoSH U at work Posted: October 20, 2017 at 04:21 PM (#5559198)
Because building and managing a bullpen is the single most important managerial job by far.


No, it most certainly isn't.

Bullpen performance and use is a determinant of Pythag overperformance.


It's possible having a Rivera back there for 20 seasons tilted things a little. But if you're managing your bullpen well, you're also keeping 4-3 games you're trailing from becoming 7-3. I've never seen any evidence to support the idea that wins over pythag is any real indicator of managerial acumen.

I absolutely think that if you have a very top heavy bullpen, with #### arms in slots 9-13, you can get your pyth to underperform your wins, but that's not a valuable skill.
   15. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: October 20, 2017 at 04:25 PM (#5559201)
Getting his team to play as well as they can is the single most important managerial job by far.

And we have absolutely no way to measure that, or know if the spread between best and worst managers is 2 games or 20.

I'm skeptical that, aside from extreme cases of terrible managers, the manager can do much to influence player performance.

Using Pythag means that Joe Girardi gets punished for getting as much as he got out of his players this year which seems nonsensical.

Well, I would say he didn't get as much as he should because he let struggling relievers continue to blow leads. Chapman blew multiple critical games where he was allowed to face 5, 6, even 8 batters. Betances had a few of those two.

When a guy doesn't have it, you take him out. I don't care how big his reputation. This was his worst season managing the pen.
   16. Jose is an Absurd Doubles Machine Posted: October 20, 2017 at 04:28 PM (#5559202)
And we have absolutely no way to measure that, or know if the spread between best and worst managers is 2 games or 20.


That we don't know how to measure it doesn't mean it's not the most important thing a manager does.
   17. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: October 20, 2017 at 04:30 PM (#5559205)
It's possible having a Rivera back there for 20 seasons tilted things a little.

I think Rivera's contributions to the Yankees success was vastly over-rated, so no. They did just fine with Wetteland, Soriano, and Robertson.

But if you're managing your bullpen well, you're also keeping 4-3 games you're trailing from becoming 7-3. I've never seen any evidence to support the idea that wins over pythag is any real indicator of managerial acumen.

Looking at good managers in their prime, they seem to overperform. Torre did. Scioscia did in his early days with the Angels.
   18. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: October 20, 2017 at 04:32 PM (#5559206)
That we don't know how to measure it doesn't mean it's not the most important thing a manager does.

No, but it means we don't know if the talent spread is tiny, or huge.

Having a good arm is critical to being a good major league defender, but the spread in talent is so small that it doesn't tell us much about the likely success of a team.

If 90% of managers are within +/- 2 wins on this attribute, it can be really important, and practically irrelevent at the same time.
   19. Jose is an Absurd Doubles Machine Posted: October 20, 2017 at 04:37 PM (#5559213)
This was his worst season managing the pen.


When leading or tied after six innings;

2017 - .831
2016 - .750
2015 - .806
2014 - .704
2013 - .772
2012 - .863
2011 - .815
2010 - .837
2009 - .926
2008 - .856

So his best year since 2012 in games leading or tied after six.
   20. SoSH U at work Posted: October 20, 2017 at 04:38 PM (#5559215)
I think Rivera's contributions to the Yankees success was vastly over-rated, so no.


With evidence like that, I'm convinced.

Just to be clear, Torre was good, but it didn't have anything to do with Rivera, who was there the entirety of Joe's run in New York. But it did have something to do with bullpens. You can throw your back out trying to twist like that.

And we have absolutely no way to measure that, or know if the spread between best and worst managers is 2 games or 20.


We have as much way of measuring it as we do of measuring bullpen management. Dag's looked at this, you remember?
   21. Nero Wolfe, Indeed Posted: October 20, 2017 at 08:53 PM (#5559300)
wrong thread
   22. The Yankee Clapper Posted: October 20, 2017 at 09:11 PM (#5559318)
Bullpen performance and use is a determinant of Pythag overperformance.

Twins 2018 TV Analyst: "Looks like Gardy is bringing in Carl Cantpitch for the 9th inning to pad his Pythagorean record. Carl is good for that."
   23. ReggieThomasLives Posted: October 20, 2017 at 10:14 PM (#5559372)
Pythagorean outperformance measures one thing, how often you lose by 12 runs instead of 6 runs in your worst losses.
   24. No longer interested in this website Posted: October 20, 2017 at 11:34 PM (#5559450)
What they should have done was kept the team together and then hired Gardenhire.


Yep.

The Tigers will be sneaking around the 81-win mark in 2019. Then they'll go out and try to get a few guys, maybe a middle of the order guy, let's say....a JD Martinez type? Or a veteran starting pitcher to make a run at a wild card, like, um...Justin Verlander.

But, you know, go have your rebuild.
   25. Dr. Vaux Posted: October 21, 2017 at 01:40 AM (#5559475)
You guys don't make any sense. Martinez and Verlander won't be good anymore in 2019. By not having them, the team will lose enough games to get high draft picks. They didn't have a roster that was going to be able to win 90 games with one or two low-priced acquisitions. The Cabrera contract precludes high-priced acquisitions for the next few years. The only things to do were (a) twist in the wind and hope to luck into an 85-win second wild card, or (b) tear it down, lose 95 games, and start positioning themselves through the draft to win 95 games in five years. If you twist now, you're putting off the 95-win seasons by every year you decide to twist. The Tigers tried twisting in the '89-'95 era. That didn't work out very well, did it? And I can't think of a team that won the World Series while doing it. This year's surprising wild card teams were in the process of rebuilding, not hanging on to aging veterans.

I, for one, am happy that my team wants to be the Astros instead of the Mariners.
   26. cmd600 Posted: October 21, 2017 at 01:48 AM (#5559476)
The first department Gardenhire was introduced to after arriving to accept the job was the analytics department.


And Gardy said he was "open" to analytics. That seems like a rousing endorsement of that group.
   27. SoSH U at work Posted: October 21, 2017 at 09:13 AM (#5559496)
Red Sox are reportedly going to hire Cora.

Woo hoo.
   28. Greg Pope Posted: October 21, 2017 at 10:19 AM (#5559500)
We have as much way of measuring it as we do of measuring bullpen management. Dag's looked at this, you remember?

From one of our previous discussions on the subject.

Dag says:

Whenever I see a team's pythag +/- attributed to the manager, it always makes me squirm. I can accept that he plays a role, and is a factor - but he is at best a tertiary factor. On a single season sample, it's almost all noise, and hardly any signal.


He's studied more about managers than all of us put together. He's changed my opinion on Dusty Baker*. I included the last sentence for fairness because I'm sure that some people will say that it adds up over a long career. But there's a much longer post in that thread.

*I only went from "terrible" to "below average", but that's for a different thread.
   29. Baldrick Posted: October 21, 2017 at 11:06 AM (#5559509)
While in MIN, his teams regularly outperformed their Pythag record (8 out of 13 seasons) and usually by a lot (8 (his 1st season), 5, 5, 3, 3, 2, 1, and 1 wins vs. -5 (his last season), -2, -1, -1, and -1). If there's something he's doing, that's impressive.

Put another way: His teams outperformed their Pythag slightly more than half the time, and over the course of a decade of games, their Pythag and actual records were almost identical (within 20 wins over the course of 2000 games)--both of which would be completely normal probability distributions if the effect is basically just random.
   30. fra paolo Posted: October 21, 2017 at 11:30 AM (#5559519)
You guys don't make any sense. Martinez and Verlander won't be good anymore in 2019. By not having them, the team will lose enough games to get high draft picks.

I didn't toss my toys out of the pram about the Martinez trade. Nor the Avila-Wilson deal. Nor, even, the JUpton exchange.

What I did toss my toys out of the pram about was the Verlander trade. Why? Because (a) he is the very definition of 'home-grown HoF talent', and (b) trading him creates a hole in the rotation for 2018 and possibly 2019.

I don't see how the Tigers can avoid signing some free-agent veteran innings eater, probably for two years, like Bartolo Colon or Jason Vargas. Or a cheaper option like Brett Anderson or Scott Feldman. Frankly, I'd rather see Verlander. The only reason to trade him is to get him a ring.

The Tigers already don't have a left-fielder (Alex Presley's BABIP notwithstanding) and have a question-mark of sorts at third-base (Candelario did at lot worse the second time team's saw him) and will likely open up another hole at either shortstop or secondbase after the Hot Stove season (I like Dixon Machado, but playing regularly he's so far been 100 points below Iglesias' OPS).

Meanwhile, let's look at the draft-pick argument. These are players averaging 4.5 bWAR in MLB per season during the seasons after they were drafted (roughly what Verlander did during 2005-11), with position taken:
2015: none
2014: none
2013: Bryant (2nd -- actually a bit short of 4.5, but I'll allow it)
2012: none
2011: none
2010: Sale (13th), Machado (3rd)
2009: Trout (25th)

(2016 is too soon. Verlander didn't have good stats in 2005.)

Draft position is overrated unless an obvious #1 talent like Strasburg or Harper (neither of whom made this list) dominates the prospect landscape.

Otherwise, you'll find the top picks by WAR populate the later positions in the draft, like
2014: Turner (13th), Conforto (10th), Nola (7th)
2013: Judge (32nd), Gray (3rd)
2012: Correa (1st), Seager (18th), Stroman (22nd)
2011: Rendon (6th), Lindor (8th), Springer (11th)
2010: Harper (1st), Yelich (23rd)
2009: Strasburg (1st), Pollock (17th)

Brady Singer may be an obvious #1, but is he a Strasburgian talent? And TINSTAAPP.

The point is, it seems to me that as long as you finish with a top-ten draft position, you've probably tanked enough to have a shot at the kind of All-Star talent that makes losing now worth it.
   31. fra paolo Posted: October 21, 2017 at 12:56 PM (#5559533)
I included the last sentence for fairness because I'm sure that some people will say that it adds up over a long career. But there's a much longer post in that thread.

Indeed, and that longer post does show that over a very long career (2,000+ games), it does appear to add up. But it doesn't add up to a lot.

But that's the group Gardenhire is in.

My interpretation of the evidence Dag offers in that thread is that Pythag vs Actual is not conclusive evidence of anything, but over the course of a career I wouldn't dismiss it outright, either.
   32. Greg Pope Posted: October 21, 2017 at 01:30 PM (#5559540)
it does appear to add up. But it doesn't add up to a lot.

Right. In fact, so little that I would say that it's not worth considering. Because you still have to regress it. You can't just say that whatever number the guy has is good if it's more than 2000 games. Because before you give Torre credit for a pythag difference, you have to figure out how much of that is due to, say, Rivera.
   33. The Honorable Ardo Posted: October 21, 2017 at 11:38 PM (#5559995)
Color me unimpressed. Gardenhire went 6-21 in the postseason with his good teams, then lost 90+ in the last three seasons of his tenure with the Twins. The Tigers had their pick of young, hungry candidates and hired a retread.

You must be Registered and Logged In to post comments.

 

 

<< Back to main

News

All News | Prime News

Old-School Newsstand


BBTF Partner

Support BBTF

donate

Thanks to
LA Podcasting Hombre of Anaheim
for his generous support.

Bookmarks

You must be logged in to view your Bookmarks.

Hot Topics

NewsblogOT - November* 2017 College Football thread
(182 - 1:53am, Nov 19)
Last: Lance Reddick! Lance him!

NewsblogHow an Astros player helped high-school kids have a cool World Series celebration
(1 - 12:20am, Nov 19)
Last: ajnrules

NewsblogOTP 13 November 2017: Politics, race now touching every sport
(1992 - 11:58pm, Nov 18)
Last: PreservedFish

Hall of MeritMock 2018 Modern Baseball Committee Hall of Fame Ballot
(76 - 11:33pm, Nov 18)
Last: robd4701

NewsblogOT - NBA 2017-2018 Tip-off Thread
(1410 - 11:06pm, Nov 18)
Last: don't ask 57i66135; he wants to hang them all

NewsblogOT: Winter Soccer Thread
(197 - 10:58pm, Nov 18)
Last: SPICEY WITH A SIDE OF BEER ON A BABYYYYYYY

NewsblogThe Eric Hosmer Dilemma | FanGraphs Baseball
(37 - 9:34pm, Nov 18)
Last: 6 - 4 - 3

Hall of Merit2018 Hall of Merit Ballot Discussion
(240 - 5:49pm, Nov 18)
Last: The Honorable Ardo

NewsblogStanton, Altuve capture first MVP Awards | MVP
(51 - 4:35pm, Nov 18)
Last: Lance Reddick! Lance him!

NewsblogJim Palmer on Mark Belanger and Omar Vizquel: The Hardball Times
(98 - 4:33pm, Nov 18)
Last: Walt Davis

NewsblogFangraphs: Let's Make One Thing Absolutely Clear About Aaron Judge
(22 - 3:42pm, Nov 18)
Last: Walt Davis

NewsblogThe story of Alex Anthopoulos: From tragedy to prodigy to Braves GM
(1 - 8:30am, Nov 18)
Last: bfan

NewsblogBraves will lose prospects, and possibly a lot more, for violating international market rules
(48 - 1:30am, Nov 18)
Last: Armored Trooper VOTTO

NewsblogJudge, Bellinger named BBWAA Rookies of Year | MLB.com
(86 - 9:25pm, Nov 17)
Last: Walt Davis

NewsblogDerek Jeter addresses Giancarlo Stanton rumors | MLB.com
(24 - 7:38pm, Nov 17)
Last: Khrushin it bro

Page rendered in 0.4081 seconds
47 querie(s) executed