July 22, 2013

Executive Decision

Hello Sports Fans! The second half is underway and off to a good start, with a series win against the division leading Detroit Tigers. Even better, today offers us a free [unauthorized] lesson from the prestigious Yost School of Management.

Wins against division opponents are always important. Often though, victories against these rival clubs are tough to come by. For me, these are also the games in which Ned Yost’s managerial shortcomings are magnified.

When Jim Leyland goes to the bench for a pinch-hitter, it generally makes sense. When Ron Gardenhire calls for a bunt, I understand why. When Terry Francona brings in a situational lefty, he’s following the scouting report perfectly. When Robin Ventura starts Brent Morel… okay, Ventura is a bad example, but I think I’ve made my point.

These guys know baseball. They play the odds, much like a disciplined card player. Their moves don’t always succeed, but they stand the best chance to do so.

Ned Yost, in contrast, rarely does anything that makes sense. The batting order. Substitutions. Situational hitting. You name it. Perhaps the most baffling part of Yost’s decision making is reserved for the pitching staff.

The Royals’ bullpen is one of the best in baseball. Home to All-Stars Greg Holland and Aaron Crow.

Not to mention volunteer first-responder Bruce Chen.

But leave it to Ned to over-utilize, under-utilize, or just plain guess when it comes to his team of relievers.

Here’s the thing, though: it turns out Ned isn’t guessing at all. When it comes to the pitching staff, Yost relies on a strict decision analysis chart during every game.

I know this is hard to comprehend. Ned Yost is one of the great minds in baseball. He used to play catcher and wore very nerdy glasses. He must manage purely on instinct.


He uses this chart:

And this chart sucks.

Now you know why this guy leads the team in appearances.

Jesus H. Yost.

Go Tim Collins! You're the Best!

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