Rumors began to swirl from somewhere that Dusty Baker might be on his way out of Cincinnati Reds as their manager. Who knows where those things come from but they apparently were not true thank goodness. There are surely managers that could be proven both better and worse than Baker. There might even be one or two that are available this off-season that would be considered better by someone. That does not mean that the Reds should have considered firing Baker however and by all accounts, they didn’t.
Baker has managed for 20 season at the MLB level. Of those 20 seasons he only has had 7 teams that finished at less than .500 winning percentage. Three of those came within his first few seasons as a manager and two of them came as the skipper of the Chicago Cubs. Only six times has he finished less than third in the division. He has finished first 5 times and second place 6 times. One of the first place finishes was with the Cubs as well.
Take all of that as you will but if it proves anything at all, it proves that Baker knows his way as a manager and can do great things with teams that execute. Obviously his big guns didn’t get the job done in their one game playoff. You can believe that if it had been even a five game set, they would have gotten their bats going and Baker would have had something to do with it. There was no reason to question his ability to manage in the first place so they should never have even thought about firing him. As a matter of fact, they may as well go ahead and give him an extension because if it gets some better than Baker, it isn’t much.