Since it appears we've waned a little on the previous topic ("I hate xenophobics. Let it be known," said Justin. "I don't like it. It shouldn't be world or the United States. Hegemony, I mean."), just wanted to let everyone know that I now have a Pronk-sized man crush on Manny Acta.
"The stats, they're all and fine. I mean, they don't lie but I need enough of it to back me up. ... If I have enough data, let's say over twenty, over thirty, a hundred sometimes you have access to all of that then I can go by the stats, because they don't lie. I mean, it's been proven to me that a guy from first base with no outs has a better chance to score than a guy from second base with one out. That's been proven to me with millions of at-bats. So I don't like moving guys over from first to second unless there's a pitcher up or it's real late in the game. ... Top of the lineup guys will bunt, bottom of the lineup will bunt in those types of situations. ... I'm telling you right now you're not going to be seeing me bunting guys from first to second in the middle of the games or early unless it's the pitcher. ... I'll be straight up to you guys, I'm not going to be running all over the place just so 20-25,000 people in the stands are saying that I'm aggressive while people are getting thrown out on the bases." -- Found at a great Nats blog called Banks of the Anacostia.
Two things: 1) Manny said this publicly, at Spring Training, in front of baseball writers. While I don't wish to enter into another media-baiting frenzy, I would say on the whole that baseball writers (especially the older ones, or the ones who appear often on TV) are often the most prejudicial assholes when it comes to statistics, anywhere. Worse than Joe Morgan. OK, maybe not, but for reals, they hate that statistics bullshit. 2) Manny needs a speechwriter like I need a replacement layer of skin cells for my right palm. But we'll forgive him, because he's my man now and you need to back the fuck off, bitch.
So, here's my question: In a day and age when Ozzie Guillen is praised for absolutely killing his team with small-ball bullshit (check out this post at FJM for a more thorough explanation of that statement), what does Acta's attitude, in combination with the sheer decrepitude of the team the Nationals are going to trot out there, portend for his future?
I don't know about you, but I would be stunned if this guy lasts more than one season. The sports writers in Washington, who will have nothing good to write about, will brandish the knives after the first five-game losing streak, blaming it all on Acta "not preaching the little things" and "waiting for the three-run home run" and "trying to play Earl Weaver baseball with a Whitey Herzog roster." All of it will be untrue, but if you hear or read the same thing 500 times in the course of one season, you come to believe it. It may not be a stretch to say that Acta might be grooming himself for a blackballing; anyone think an owner is going to give Paul DePodesta another shot at being a GM after the way Plaschke spent two whole years writing nothing by hate speech about him? Doubtful, though it would be nice to think the Padres might see him as a post-KT option. Not that I want KT to go anywhere.
Anyway, that's it. Proceed with whatever else it was you people were arguing about.