Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Baseball Managers Are Old And Gray

Ever wonder where all the older folks have gone? The answer: in the dugouts of major league teams.
"You wanna win at baseball? Easy. Hire an old guy to manage your team.

In this youth-dominated world, it's old-timers day everyday at the top of the baseball standings. The National League in particular is like an advertisement for AARP.

The National League also boasts three other graybeards in their 60s. You could hire the whole bunch to do those interminable sales pitches for old people's remedies that dominate the network news commercials every night — fixing their dentures, going to the bathroom at their leisure and taking the right medications to ward off dementia.

The average age of National League managers is almost 57 and, hey, that's supposed to be the league where more brain power is required because there's no designated hitter. They don't call it the Senior Circuit for nothing.

Not that the American League managers are all spring chickens, either. The Central Division leader is Detroit, managed by Jimmy Leyland, who is 64. That means that by the end of the year, four of the six division-leading managers will be eligible for full Social Security benefits."

I have no idea how these guys survive a 162 game season. I'm only 19 years old and the wear and tear of watching 162 baseball games on TV is too much for me. Lord knows how these guys deal with the brutal travel, the media, big egos, agents, front office people, and oh yeah, their families. Jesus, that sounds like an action packed life.

It's hard to believe that we don't see more managers falling asleep in the dugout during games. One of my favorite baseball moments was watching Frank Robinson fall asleep in the dugout while the Nationals, the team he was managing, was playing.

In the end, it's all about the love of the game. You have to admire these baseball lifers, who put in their dues in the minor leagues and other various roles in the hopes of getting a shot to manage at the highest level.

Trivia Question: Who is the oldest manager in baseball history? How old was he?


Ron Rollins said...

Connie Mack at 91.

Jorge Says No! said...

Mack is correct, but he was actually 87.

Still old though!