Baseball had a chance to really reinforce its standing in the American sports landscape with a compelling World Series and they managed to shoot themselves in the foot.
I refer to an admittedly foolish decision by Dodgers third baseman Josh Turner to come back on the field after the Series had been won after he tested COVID-positive.
Turner was foolish and the media coverage made him look like a criminal, instead of a 36-year-old who had reached his career pinnacle and reacted a bit foolishly.
Since the baseball,pro basketball and hockey seasons are now over, I’ve given thought to doing a theme column. The theme I’m going to do is:hiring a coach/manager. Do you hire new blood or someone who has previous experience?
A study of the most successful teams and those which have seen recent success, frankly, showed a mixed bag between New blood and repeat performers.
New England hired Bill Belichick after a lackluster for the most part stint at Cleveland. Pittsburgh hired Chuck Noll,Bill Cowher and Mike Tomblin from obscure assistant coach positions. Andy Reid had a successful run in Philadelphia.
In baseball,Dave Roberts and Kevin Cash were both coaches and minor league managers. The Chicago White Sox just turned to a 76-year-old Hall of Famer in Tony LaRussa to manage a rising young team.
In basketball,Frank Vogel just coached the Lakers to a title. The hires for head coaching vacancies ranged from Doc Rivers with a title to Steve Nash with no previous coaching experience.
I guess the most important lesson is have a definite idea of whom you want and a solid organization to support the person chosen.
Jeff Harvey is a freelance reporter and columnist for the Princeton Times. Contact him at email@example.com