Making the Case for Buck Showalter as AL Manager of the Year
It’s the end of the regular season and baseball’s award season is approaching. The Baltimore Orioles have a very real chance at winning one of the major awards. Buck Showalter has a great chance of winning AL manager of the year. Showalter has already won the AL manager of the year award twice in 1994 with the New York Yankees and in 2004 with the Texas Rangers.
It comes down to Showalter and the Oakland Athletics Bob Melvin. Anyone who even mentions the Yankees Joe Girardi needs to stop immediately. I know managing the Yankees comes with a lot of pressure, but this is a two person race. Since the A’s beat out the Rangers for the AL West division title, you have to think Melvin got a big boost for his chances at winning the award. Let me preface this by saying both managers are very deserving. You can’t go wrong with either manager, but I am going to be a bit of a homer and argue for Showalter.
Both the A’s and the Orioles played well above their expectations. Both teams weren’t given a chance to succeed this season and both teams were terrific. Despite the A’s winning their division they are just one game better than the Orioles. You can also argue that the Orioles overcame a little more considering they were facing off in what has been considered baseball’s toughest division for some time now.
I’ll be honest, I think based solely on this season you may have to give Melvin the edge. However, even though you’re not supposed to take past seasons into consideration, I can’t help it.
Showalter has done something as the Orioles manager that seemed impossible. He has done something that hasn’t been done since 1997. Six managers have tried and failed to do what Showalter accomplished this season. Showalter has brought winning back to Camden Yards.
As bad as the A’s were expected to be, it hasn’t been nearly as long since the A’s were a successful franchise. Also, isn’t a major part of the movie Moneyball about how the genius himself, Billy Beane is the real savior, not the manager? According to the movie former A’s manager Art Howe didn’t do much, all the smart decisions are coming from upstairs. We all know the movies don’t lie. Ok, I may be stretching a bit with that argument.
The Orioles franchise was thought to still be a complete mess. That is until Showalter came in and has turned it completely around. While I feel Melvin has done a sensational job as a manger, I feel Showalter has done a sensational job turning around an organization. Showalter is a big part of the reason why you can go to an Orioles game at Camden Yards in September and see a sea of orange in the stands. Showalter’s job as manager is more than wins and losses. Showalter has changed a baseball culture in Baltimore for the better. This is why Showalter should win AL manager of the year.