Monday, June 18, 2012
Sam Perlozzo, 2007 Topps #608
Perlozzo and Trembley were two of a kind, perfectly nice men who had paid their dues in baseball through decades of coaching and minor league managing. Both were overmatched when placed in charge of big league clubs, and both happened to be in the right place when their predecessor got the axe. Inexplicably, the Birds removed the "interim" tag from each of them instead of bothering to seek out the right man for the job.
One of the wisest moldy-oldie sayings in baseball is that a manager gets too much credit for his team's successes and too much blame for its failures. But that didn't make it any easier to sit by and watch Baltimore's substitute teachers misuse (and overuse) their relievers, try to handle aging veteran hitters with kid gloves, and offer bland postgame platitudes about "tipping your hat" to the opposing team's victorious pitcher or dominant slugger.
Current winning record aside, Orioles still have a long way to go before they can truly measure up to the deep major league rosters and minor league talent of their rivals in the American League East. But their strong start in 2012 mirrors the leaps that current manager Buck Showalter has overseen in each of his three previous major league jobs. For all the work the O's have left to do, at least they're not still fishing about for a qualified manager on top of it all.