Alan Trammell takes a lot of heat for the Tigers’ 119-loss season in 2003. Since then, he has coached in the Majors but no one seems willing to give him a second shot at managing. And that’s probably not completely unfair. Sure, the teams he managed in 2004 and ’05 may have rebounded from the record in ’03 but they were still 20 or so games under .500. That doesn’t exactly get you very far in baseball.
However, as bad of a manager as Trammell may have been with the Tigers and no matter how much blame he deserves for that horrible 2003 season, Tram barely even rates a mention when it comes to the truly bad managers. More than that, in order to truly put his record into context, RSBS takes you on a trip through truly terribly management.
Zine El Abdine Ben Ali
Our journey begins with the recent events in Tunisia. Now, although the other half of RSBS only knows Tunisia as Tatooine in Star Wars, the country is a real place and it really did just drive out its leader of 30 years. Mr. Ben Ali took an interesting approach to his position as a footnote in history. Instead of contenting himself with just looting the riches of his country, he also referred to his fellow Tunisians as “terrorists” for daring to denounce him and then decided to shoot up some of them just to prove his point. In the end, it didn’t turn out so well and Mr. Ben Ali is now cooling his heels (although probably not literally) in the wonderfully tolerant Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
Come on, did you think I could make it through a post on bad management without mentioning Selig? The guy’s record speaks for itself. From the lameass decision to have the All-Star game count for home-field advantage in the World Series to his incredibly arrogant approach to and mismanagement of the steroids era, Selig stands for everything that is wrong with baseball today. I wish I had something nice to say about the guy just so I could change things up a bit but I’d only be lying to our readers and to myself. I’m not willing to do either and so Mr. Selig once again finds himself on an RSBS list.
Mobutu Sese Seko
Going back to Africa but a little ways south of Tunisia, we find the monstrous and monstrously mismanaged country of the Belgian Congo…I mean Zaire…I mean the Democratic Republic of the Congo. From the escapades of the Belgians to a never-ending civil war, the Congo has much to offer in the way of mismanagement. However, if you want to single out just one person, you’d have to go with Mobutu. And if there’s one small little tidbit that encapsulates his mismanagement of the country and its enormous wealth of natural resources, it would have to be this: Mobutu built a landing strip at his personal home near the tiny town of Gbadolite and made sure it was long enough to accommodate a Concorde. He then proceeded to charter the Concorde on a regular basis to ferry he and his family around the world.
Although Matt Millen never killed anyone directly, he was a terrible general manager. In fact, he may be the worst manager ever. Since the inception of the Superbowl the Lions have
never been a great franchise, but he still managed to take them to new lows.
And, although he was no longer around when it happened, that 0-16 season
was the real fruit of his handiwork. Sure, when compared to guys like Mobutu and Ben Ali, Millen may not seem so bad. Even in comparison to Selig and his giant ears Millen may seem tame in comparison. But it’s just a ruse. Bad management aside, the man is evil incarnate and the fact that he still has a job anywhere just proves that the greatest lie the devil ever told was convincing the major networks to put him on the air.
And there you have it. I’m not saying this list is by any means exhaustive but it has been pretty exhaustively researched and vetted, just like everything else I post here. And all that aside, you know it must be true because it’s on the internet.
And for most of us, Friday = Fun day!
But then there are some of us, like my loquacious and oft-curt colleague, Mr. Allen Krause, for whom Friday = yesterday was a bad day. Again.
Let me explain:
Hate me ‘cuz I don’t know pain like a Lions fan knows pain, just don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.
P.S. Al loves Matt Millen.
Even as the economy begins its long climb towards recovery, problems threaten to dislodge any toehold it has made and send it hurtling back to the base like Sisyphus’ stone. And if there’s any one problem that lies on peoples’ minds extra heavily, it’s the continued lack of jobs. Of course the government is creating programs to try and help with this problem but my personal feeling is that this is not so much an issue of people not having jobs as it is the wrong people still having jobs.
For instance, in Detroit, one of the hardest hit areas as far as job loss goes in the country, how is it that thousands of autoworkers no longer have jobs but an incompetent imbecile like Matt Millen manages to land on his feet? After turning an already dilapidated franchise into a synonym for failure, he blows town and winds up in Bristol, CT analyzing football for ESPN. Here’s my analysis. Millen is a bum and should be on the street peddling pencils at a dime a pop. Although I’m pretty sure he could find a way to turn that into a shambles as well.
However, if you live in Detroit and you’re a fan of the Detroit Tigers, you’re probably just as worried about who is employed as who isn’t. Since my analytical skills are pretty much limited to the aforementioned summary of Matt Millen, I’ll leave the real analysis to someone who knows what they’re doing:
“The Tigers are in trouble.” (scroll down to 23 November to read the full entry)
Yeah, I guess Paul pretty much summed it up right there. Sometimes it’s more about who does have a job than who doesn’t.
The Tigers may not be in as bad of shape as the Lions but there isn’t a whole lot to smile about in Motown these days, no matter where you’re coming from. And even though Dombrowski is no Matt Millen, he definitely faces an uphill battle in making the Tigers competitive. Let’s just hope he has a little more luck than Sisyphus.
Poor Jeffery. It’s 2009 and still he has to deal with 2008 problems. It must be awful to deal with incompetent management. Yep, I feel really bad for you. Cheering for the team with the reigning NL MVP is almost as tough as cheering for the team that considers Farnsworth to be quality relief material. And losing Brian Fuentes to the Angels is almost as bad as losing
Chauncey Billups and getting Allen Iverson in return (seriously man, love the name but you are to low-percentage shots what Wilt Chamberlain is to loose women). John Mozeliak is incompetent, yes, but try comparing that to nearly a decade of Matt Millen.
No, my friend, you have nothing to complain about. Try being a Lions fan. Or maybe book a vacation to Gaza. Or how about growing a beard and attempting to fly out of our nation’s capitol. Now those people have complaints. You, you just have a little bit of a slump following winning the freaking World Series two years ago. Jimminy Christmas, man. You sound like a Red Sox fan.
Now, I want you to go home, wipe those tears from your eyes and then look in the mirror and say, “Jeffery, you’re better than this.” And then I want you to apologize to all of our readers. Do you think you can do that, Jeff? If not, it’s going to be into the corner with you for a timeout.
P.S. Happy New Year!
Man, I gotta tell you. For as good as 2008 was at times, overall it was a brutal trip for those of us hailing from mitten shaped states. The Wolverines missed out on a bowl berth for the first time in 3 decades (that’s a score and a half for those keeping score at home), the Lions accomplished perfection as only Matt Millen could define it and the Tigers, after starting off the season as almost everyone’s pick to win the World Series, somehow found a way to not only lose continuously but also trade for Kyle Farnsworth. Seriously guys, Farnsworth?
But now is the time of year when we get a chance to refocus on the good things and be grateful for what we have. And honestly, we have a lot to be thankful for here at RSBS. First off, it’s great to be part of a community that appreciates baseball and politics the same way that Jeff and I do. And it’s also great to work on this project with one of my best friends who also happens to be a cunning linguist and master baseball intellect.
Granted, we don’t always agree and it’s sad that Jeff holds so much hope for the city of St. Louis (even if it doesn’t always seem that way) but, despite our differences (especially when it comes to Erin Andrews), I still have nothing but respect for Mr. Lung and his bitterness when it comes to the things bringing down our nation (mainly Sarah Palin and the Chicago Cubs, if his posts are any indication).
However, for the purposes of this end of the year reminiscing, th rules are that we are limited to choosing three of the other person’s posts that really do it for us (in that Sarah Palin firing an automatic weapon sort of way). So, without any further ado, here we go.
Yankees Broaden Scouting Map — December 14, 2008
Sometimes short entries can say it all and that’s definitely the case with this one. Nothing else distills the essence of RSBS like scouting the Iraqi shoe-thrower.
1st Runner Up:
(Don’t) Try This at Home — October 15, 2008
Since both baseball and politics often lead people to drink, it’s only fitting that a blog purporting to cover both subjects should provide a guide. In the pantheon of drinking games, this one ranks right up there.
Freakazoids and Oddities — December 5, 2008
I don’t know if Jeff just ran out of ideas and started looking at search results or what lead to this post but the fact that “Wemen hitting mens balls” is one of the most popular strings leading people to RSBS is certainly change we can believe in.
And finally, the Winner:
Time for a Major League Intervention — August 19, 2008
I still remember sitting down and reading this entry for the first time and thinking it was one of the most brilliant, insightful and intense pieces I had ever read. They can’t all be like this but I do think this piece is one of the main reasons why our readers keep coming back.
So, that’s it for me and that’s it for 2008. Pitchers and catchers report in just a little while and you can be sure that we’re still going to be here doing what we do.
Christmas is a time for giving. And that’s why I want to thank Jane Heller over at Confessions of a She-Fan for giving me one of the greatest gifts ever. It doesn’t seem like much, just a little article from the NY Times but it provided the one thing we can’t live without: Hope. Now, I still don’t think that Mr. Trammell is going to make it into the Hall but if the Times says he belongs there, who am I to argue? I mean, I can’t think of a single thing they’ve been wrong about. Well, maybe just one thing but really, it’s so minor as to be insignificant.
But, maybe if Jane and the Times can give me hope here, someone can come forward and give me hope in a couple other places. For instance, since we all know that the night is darkest right before the dawn, does that mean that the Lions are about to turn the corner? At the very least, Millen is finally gone. And is it possible that the Tigers will be competitive in the AL Central this year despite their complete failure to make any significant moves so far this offseason? At least Farnsworth is gone.
I don’t know, though. It’s hard to base your hopes for the future on subtraction instead of addition. But as a native Michigander, I can only go with what I know. I mean, this is a state that has single-handedly destroyed its signature industry (granted, with a lot of help from the industry itself) and now sports an impressively gaudy 9.6% unemployment rate. The Lions, industrial contraction and negative job creation? Well, at least we still have the Red Wings.
This is awesome! And of course by “this,” I’m referring to Illinois Governor Rod Blago-“trailer hitch” being arrested. What this means is that the past nine months have seen the downfall of the the governors of two of the nation’s most populous states. Now, I think that Blago-“I have an itch” definitely takes the cake because you need cojones to straight up extort money in return for a seat in the Senate.
But, Eliot Spitzer’s now well-known sexual preferences are nothing to sniff at. And, unlike former President Clinton, at least Spitzer went for a good looking girl (even if he did have to pay for it). Now, the one thing that could make this year complete is if we found out that Arnold Schwarzenegger has been having secret Nazi orgies in one of his California mansions. Europe is already all over this one but there are still 3 weeks left. C’mon, Arnie! Give us the trifecta. We’ve earned this!
When it comes to things that are not awesome, though, this year’s Detroit Lions would have to rank right up there. Yes, like Mr. Lung said, I am a Lions fan. I have always been a Lions fan. Just like I was and remain a Tigers fan, even when they came perilously close to setting a modern day record for futility. The sun is shining in MoTown, though. Matt Millen has left Ford Field and if the Lions can copy the Tigers’ story, in about 3 years we should finally see a Lions team that makes it to the Super Bowl! It’s bittersweet since history tells us that the Lions will then get destroyed as a result of their quarterback (Graham Harrell? Nate Davis? Scott Mitchell?) fumbling several times leading to back-breaking scores. However, at least we will finally be able to say we played in a Super Bowl!
No, when it comes down to it, things could be much worse. No matter how bad things may appear, at least the Feds don’t have you on tape saying:
“I’ve got this thing and it’s f***ing golden, and, uh, uh, I’m just not giving it up for f***in’ nothing. I’m not gonna do it. And, and I can always use it. I can parachute me there.”
Nice work, Rod. That’s some kind of golden f***ing parachute.