Tony Beasley is in a unique position. He has a job as a major league manager in order to audition for a job as a major league manager.
Whether he gets the job will depend on more than just his won-lost record. It’s not fair to blame the wreck of a pitching staff on him.
His philosophy, and how he relates to his players, will determine his fate. Tuesday, he shared with the local media some of his thoughts on managing.
For starters, he expects starters to go deeper than only the five innings they are expected to go now. To him, a starting pitcher going five innings is not a starting pitcher.
As he told the media, which was reported by Kevin Sherrington in The Dallas Morning News, “We’ve micromanaged and we’ve taken the instinctive part away.” He added, “I’m all for analytics but analytics can’t play. There’s a human side.”
Wait, what? Is he talking about baseball the way it used to be played?
“Starting pitching is the face of the game. They make the most money. They get four days off.”
Wait, what? Is he bringing common sense back to baseball?
It always irks me when announcers say something like, “That pitcher was able to go only five innings in last night’s game.” It’s not like the pitcher, at the end of five innings, told his manager, “I’m done, that’s it for me.” Announcers should say, “That pitcher was allowed to go only five innings in last night’s game.”
Allowed to instead of able to. That makes all the difference in the world. “Allowed to” is a more accurate picture of the state of baseball these days. A starter is able to go a lot longer than five innings. He’s just not allowed to.
Beasley seems to have a different mindset. He said he wants to train and develop his starters to be horses, like Framber Valdez was against the Rangers on Wednesday, going eight innings. Unfortunately, you can’t make a horse out of a pig, which pretty much is what he has down in that pigsty of a rotation and bullpen. But you can push guys to give you more.
This insistence that a pitcher should never go through a lineup a third time is foolish. It’s self-defeating. If you tell a person enough times that he’s not good at something, he starts to believe you.
A set lineup. Pitchers going deep into games. Tony Beasley is trying to bring old school baseball back.
He has my vote.