I have to admit that my thoughts and opinion concerning Mr. Scioscia have changed as the season has gone on. I’m an Angel fan and a fan of Scioscia, appreciative of all he has done for the organization. Still, truth be told, as the losses have built up nearly as fast as the number of lineups, my esteem has decayed. Kind of like an Angel on one shoulder and a Devil on the other.
Mike Scioscia is recognized as one of the finest managers in the game. Acclaimed as such by pundits and with a positional longevity that proves the point. Several of his coaches have gone on to become managers. Dude brought the Angels to their first World Series, then came through with the crown. Few know the game as well. He has a history as an organizational team player, managing well both up and down. He was Manager of the Year in 2002 and 2009 and a year ago this week became the 56th manager to win 1,000 or more games and the 23rd to have all 1,000 or more victories with a single team.
His ability to get everything out of the roster is legendary. His relationship with players, particularly with veterans, is extraordinary. On occasion, there have been questions about his management of younger players, but that is also a function of team management above him. His ability to communicate is not in question. Or hasn’t been until the last few years.
Surely Scioscia bleeds red now instead of blue, although Dodger associations do come to mind on occasion, like when a suicide squeeze doesn’t work in the playoffs. Really, OBP isn’t that important compared to productive outs. Baseball is baseball, no matter the decade. Remember 2002, only a decade ago.
In the past there have been occasional rumors that his influence within the organization has handicapped the General Manager, at least since Mr. Stoneman decided to relax a bit. Those rumors were discounted this last winter when the organization, with the fans welding bloody daggers in the background, made clear that Reagins was his own man and had complete control. Really, why consult the manager on the Wells trade?
The fact that some players like Napoli and Rodney leave the organization and have great success has nothing to do with Scioscia’s managerial style. Right? It has more to do with the cycle of player development and performance. Those comments that Mike is a bit overbearing must be exaggerated but it’s a fact that some established players that come to play for Scioscia don’t do so well. Little guys like Wells and Pujols. It could be that Mike does better managing players that make lower salaries.
As always, second guessing. Scioscia is about loyalty which makes me think he might not be the best manager for this Angels team. Managing is supposed to be about playing the correct players, right?