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Molitor's Manager Of The Year Chances

On Monday, Paul Molitor was announced as one of three finalists for the American League Manager of the Year. In the midst of a big turnaround in Minnesota, Molitor led the Twins to the playoffs for the first time since 2010. Entering the season, there were questions about whether or not the new front office regime would keep Molitor around. He made it tough to show him the door.

How does Molitor stack up against the other finalists? Could he bring home the hardware?
Image courtesy of Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports
Terry Francona, Cleveland Indians
AL Central Champions (102-60 Record)

Resume: The defending AL Champs had high hopes for 2017. Many considered them the favorites to repeat at the top of the league. Francona had to navigate his team through a potential World Series “hangover.” A slow start at the beginning of the year was quickly forgotten as the Indians compiled a record 22-game winning streak. Cleveland won the AL Central by 17 games.

AJ Hinch, Houston Astros
AL West Champions (101-61 Record)

Resume: Everyone knows what the Astros were able to do in the postseason but only the regular season figures into MLB’s award season. Houston has had high expectations the last couple of seasons, but Hinch was able to push all the right buttons as his club crossed the 100-win mark. He was able to use the right mix of young talent and veteran players to be a dominant regular season squad that went on to quite the postseason run. Houston won the AL West by 21 games.

Paul Molitor, Minnesota Twins
AL Wild Card (85-77 Record)

Resume: While the Indians and the Astros were expected to be strong clubs, no one expected Minnesota to make the playoffs. On the heels of the worst season in franchise history, Molitor was able to bring playoff baseball back to Minnesota (even if it was only for one game). Young players like Miguel Sano and Byron Buxton were able to take huge strides under Molitor’s guidance. Sometimes the voters can give the Manager of the Year to the team that improved the most and Minnesota definitely fits into this category.

Who do you think will take home the award? Leave a COMMENT and join the discussion.


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30 Comments

Hinch.

I agree with Jeff Sullivan (who picked Molitor before the finalists were annoounced) in that I think Molitor will win.

Go Paul!
    • Jerr and tarheeltwinsfan like this

 

I agree with Jeff Sullivan (who picked Molitor before the finalists were annoounced) in that I think Molitor will win.

Go Paul!

I think that would be a SHOCKER, but baseball needs that, and I would love it!!!!!!!

 

I agree with Jeff Sullivan (who picked Molitor before the finalists were annoounced) in that I think Molitor will win.

Go Paul!

 

I agree with you.I am not sure what criteria is used and I like all of them but I tend to feel the manager that took his team from worst record in the league to the playoffs as having done more than the other two who had good teams to begin with.  

    • tarheeltwinsfan likes this

I think that if the Twins had a different manager in 2016 whose mess Molitor cleaned, he could have won. He cleaned his own mess and just gained 2 games from 2015.This is not manager of the year territory.

    • ChiTownTwinsFan, h2oface and wsnydes like this

I have a hunch it'll be Hinch.

    • h2oface, Reider and tarheeltwinsfan like this

Based on the results expectation formula that exists somewhere to make these determinations. 

 

It should be Paul. 

 

However... My personal choice is AJ Hinch because I like how he did it. He had a full roster of players to mix in and utilize. That is both an advantage and a skill that some managers don't possess. 

 

So I'm going with AJ but think it should be Paul. 

 

 

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tarheeltwinsfan
Nov 07 2017 02:55 PM

 

I have a hunch it'll be Hinch.

Funny.

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tarheeltwinsfan
Nov 07 2017 03:02 PM

Advanced sabermetrics show Molitor to be 11 WAG-E (Wins Above Gardenhire minus Ejections), whereas any one of us here at TD could have managed either of those two powerhouse rosters at Cleveland or Houston and won the pennant...thereby giving both Hinch and Francona 0 WAR-E.

    • 70charger, big dog, jimmer and 1 other like this

 

I think that if the Twins had a different manager in 2016 whose mess Molitor cleaned, he could have won. He cleaned his own mess and just gained 2 games from 2015.This is not manager of the year territory.

 

This isn't GM of the year, it's manager of the year.

    • DocBauer, tarheeltwinsfan, jimmer and 1 other like this

I think Molitor should win. I worry that he won't, and that it'll be Francona. But given Molitor's pitching staff -- he had to use 36 pitchers! -- and the team's improvement in the second half, he should win.

 

Much easier to win games when you have a pitching staff like the one Cleveland uses. And a lineup like Houston's. 

    • DocBauer likes this

 

Based on the results expectation formula that exists somewhere to make these determinations. 

 

It should be Paul. 

 

However... My personal choice is AJ Hinch because I like how he did it. He had a full roster of players to mix in and utilize. That is both an advantage and a skill that some managers don't possess. 

 

So I'm going with AJ but think it should be Paul. 

Yeah, AJ Hinch definitely had a full roster of quality players, but that's a result of the GM's work.

 

I think Molitor should win. I worry that he won't, and that it'll be Francona. But given Molitor's pitching staff -- he had to use 36 pitchers! -- and the team's improvement in the second half, he should win.

 

Much easier to win games when you have a pitching staff like the one Cleveland uses. And a lineup like Houston's. 

Or a pitching staff like Houston's.

AJ Hinch gets my vote. Francona gets my 2nd place vote. I am in the 2 game improvement from 2015 to 2017 park. Molitor is like the relief pitcher that totally blows the save in the top of the 9th, gives up 4 runs and the two run lead, and then the team bails him out in the bottom of the inning, scores 3, and he gets the win. This team never should have had so much to come back from.

 

Maybe I know and saw and remember too many things about how Molitor manages. The total mismanagement of what pen we had, the bunts, the blown double switch in LA that we all sat in the stands for 20 some minutes of WTF..... It isn't just won/loss record. A man that is still struggling so much with learning how to manage is not the manager of the year in my book.

Molitor wonor placed high in awards as a player.A fine, storied organization like the BBWAA may have a lot of members still there from Molitor's playing days.Some here may be too young to remember, or too old to,but I seem to remember Molitor being very accessible to the press. Not that the fine people inside the velvet rope would have anything but high journalistic standards when voting.

 

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Deduno Abides
Nov 07 2017 07:14 PM
Molitor seems like just an OK manager and the award is kind of silly, but it seems that achieving a positive result that had never before been accomplished, like taking a 100 loss team to the playoffs, should result in recognition for the manager. I would rather have Francona or Hinch as the manager, but still feel that Molitor should get recognized for his 2017 accomplishments.

P.S. many people, yes, many people, criticize Molitor’s bullpen management, but Hinch, Dave Roberts and Joe Maddon were also heavily criticized for their bullpen usage in the playoffs and World Series, even though they had much better pitchers than Molitor, so it’s hard to hold that against him.

 

 Joe Madison

Auto correct strikes again!

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Deduno Abides
Nov 07 2017 07:46 PM

Auto correct strikes again!


I think the official legal name is #@(#!*#”% auto correct.
    • spinowner likes this

 

Yeah, AJ Hinch definitely had a full roster of quality players, but that's a result of the GM's work.

 

It's all about the splinters for me. 

 

He got all of them on the field without anybody getting splinters in their hind end from bench time. 

 

 

    • jimmer likes this

20 something game winning streak to blow open the division race is hard to ignore. I think Francona.

    • h2oface likes this

Molitor was the one who most exceeded expectations, but is that enough to win the award? No idea. If I had to bet money, I'd put it on Hinch being the winner.

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Halsey Hall
Nov 08 2017 08:42 AM

As TK always said, "pitchers can make a manager look smart. I'm pulling for Paul.

I wouldn't even have Francona on this list. I'd put Joe Gerardi on it. I think Molitor should win because of expectations. The over/under on the Twins this year was 73. They went wayyyyy over that and continued on even after they lost their big gun. Neither they nor the Yankees were expected to make the playoffs and both did. Hinch is a very good manager and will probably win because his team won the division and had the best record. So Paulie should win but AJ will win.

Will he win? Hard to say. Would he deserve to win? Absolutely!

Under the tutelage of he and his staff, we saw a lot of growth in the kids. We also saw a team compete, win, and make the post season almost despite their pitching at times.

I didn't always like or agree with some of his lineups and moves, but I saw the wheels turning and often understood what he was doing. I also saw real growth from Paul as a manager as the year went along. And his players seem to like playing for him.

As was discussed on the radio near the end of the season, Molitor has never been a manager, at any level, before becoming one at the ML level. I still think he's growing and learning.
    • jimmer likes this

Schoenfield predicts Molitor wins AL MOY.

 

http://www.espn.com/...me-the-hardware

 


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