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Neal: Wes Johnson Cut from Different Cloth

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 11:26 AM
http://www.startribu...loth/505947812/     Eyes were raised when the Twins hired Wes Johnson, a college pitching coach, as thei...

Article: Kepler's Unusual Contract

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 11:21 AM
The Twins announced long-term deals with Max Kepler and Jorge Polanco yesterday. Both are somewhat unusual players with whom to sign to a...

Romero to the pen

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 11:26 AM
According MLB.com Romero will be in the pen this year. I hope they use him as more of a super reliever, going multiple innings if needed...

Article: Long-Term Deals Highlight Key Truths

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 11:02 AM
Yesterday, we discussed how the Twins’ and Max Kepler’s unusual long-term contract was a result of him being a somewhat unusual candidate...

Miller: Twins Install Technology at Spring Training

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 10:00 AM
http://www.startribu...tics/505811372/   Phil Miller wrote about the new technology being used in big-league camp this spring. They...


Does a team need to be close knit to win?

Posted by mikelink45 , 03 August 2018 · 763 views

charlie finley oakland team spirit conflict characters in baseball
Does a team need to be close knit to win? I thought I would expand on my comment about the team and the fact that a team that gets along, is filled with nice guys, and causes no issues does not necessarily mean that they are winners.

Does anyone remember the A's when they dominated the game?Rudi, Henderson, Bando, Catfish Hunter, Rollie Fingers, Gene Tenace, Bert Campaneris, Blue Moon Odom, Vida Blue, Dick Williams and Charlie Finley?They hated each other and especially their owner.

"The stories have the feel of something ripped off from a Hollywood script.
All the conflict, humor and triumph of the early 1970’s Oakland A’s did, in fact, hit the big screen Thursday night. The best thing is that all the anecdotes are true.
The MLB Network held an advance screening of its newest documentary, “The Swingin’ A’s,” which chronicles the roller coaster ride of the 1972-74 A’s, winners of three consecutive World Series.
The film, which debuts Tuesday at 6 p.m. on the MLB Network, features revealing interviews with lots of key players from that era —Vida Blue, Rollie Fingers, Reggie Jackson, Gene Tenace, Sal Bando, Ray Fosse and Joe Rudi among them. Blue attended the premiere and took part in an audience Q&A hosted by the MLB Network’s Matt Vasgersian (an East Bay native and self-described A’s diehard).
“The Swingin’ A’s” is not so much a nostalgic recap of those seasons, but an honest and entertaining account of just how dysfunctional the environment was with this bunch, even as the A’s were building one of baseball’s top dynasties.
A small group of media attended Thursday’s premiere at the New Parkway Theatre in Oakland, but most of the seats in the small venue were filled by fans who cheered often throughout the one-hour documentary.
Not surprisingly, the film centers around the friction between A’s players and then-team owner Charlie Finley, the eccentric outside-the-box thinker whose penny-pinching ownership style quickly wore thin with players.
One of the more entertaining moments revolves around Jackson showing up to spring training in 1972 with a beard, a no-no under Finley. The owner offered $300 to any of the other players who grew a mustache, thinking that if facial hair became so commonplace it would persuade Jackson to eventually shave.
Instead, the idea caught fire throughout the clubhouse, and the heavy facial hair came to symbolize the free-spirit mentality of those A’s teams that ran so counter to other major league clubs. Fingers’ handlebar mustache, of course, became iconic.
“The only reason I grew this thing was to get $300 out of Charlie,” Fingers shares.
Also included is the entertaining story of young Stanley Burrell, who became an A’s batboy, eventually was granted a “vice president” title by Finley and acted as the owner’s eyes and ears in the clubhouse. Burrell, as is well-documented, went on to gain world fame as rapper MC Hammer. The Oakland native narrates the documentary.

The A’s fought with each other in the clubhouse, but above all else, they were a tight-knit bunch that formed a united front in opposition to their owner, who didn’t stand for having his authority challenged. But the film also takes care to mention the good that Finley did, such as the time he helped pay for medical expenses for a player’s wife. And, as A’s players acknowledge, Finley deserves credit for putting together this championship roster in the first place."

I know this is Minnesota Nice and we are all supposed to be great buddies, but lots of teams have made their way to a championship without being pen pals.We have had a lot of very close knit losers.

"According to CSN Bay Area’s Joe Stiglich, who also attended the advance screening.
“‘The Swingin’ A’s’ is not so much a nostalgic recap of those seasons, but an honest and entertaining account of just how dysfunctional the environment was with this bunch, even as the A’s were building one of baseball’s top dynasties,https://www.mlb.com/...sty/c-215154198

The conflicts with the Owner lead to a strike - http://research.sabr...player-conflict
Conflicts are something that must be dealt with, but they are also part of team chemistry.A passive loser is not something I want to see.That is one of the big complaints about Mauer - Mr MN Nice - does not stir the pot in any direction.When Torii Hunter clobbered Morneau it was a shock, but was it terrible?
Don't give me a bunch of guys who can pat each other on the back or the butt, give me players who want to win.

Or try to remember or check out the Bronx Zoo - Yankees under swing first manager Billy Martin and excitable George Steinbrenner. "No secret was made of the hostility between Jackson and Munson. Their teammates took sides in the split. Though they were winning ballgames, there was anything but good cheer in the Yankees locker room. Billy Martin, never one to cater to star players, joined Munson in his animosity towards Reggie. Both the manager and the captain were firm believers in fundamentals and routine. They unfairly viewed Reggie as a slacker who was only interested in padding his personal stats. The rest of the country saw it play out on live TV, when Martin and Jackson had to be restrained from brawling with each other in front of a national audience during a game of the week at Fenway Park. The Red Sox swept that series, and the Yankees seemed to be spiraling out of control." Reggie said Munson was nothing, it was Reggie that was the straw that stirs the drink. And of course there was the Martin and Steinbrenner relationship - Billy was hired and fired 5 times over 13 years. During that period Billy managed the Twins too!

In 2002 San Francisco's two stars, Jeff Kent and Barry Bonds, were known for their behind-the-scenes feud that was tearing the team apart, but they decided to make their relationship public. Kent left for the Houston Astros in the offseason and manager Dusty Baker left for the Cubs.

Darryl Strawberry said beer was the basis of the Mets "alcoholic lifestyle." He added that the team "hauled around more Bud than the Clydesdales." In his autobiography he added, "The beer was just to get the party started and maybe take the edge off the speed and coke."

I do not advocate for creating Chaos like the Red Sox team that got Terry Francona fired after a championship, http://www.baltimore...0909-story.html, but I also think that we have to accept some personalities to clash and being a nice team, even a Minnesota Nice team is not necessarily the best. Wouldn't you like to see Mauer show some emotions and get the team stirred up once in a while?