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Monday, September 15, 2008

Inexplicably, Ned Yost Fired

The Brewers have fired Ned Yost (also via AP). With the Brewers still in first place for the Wild Card (albeit tied with the Phils), and the Cubs leading Houston 6-0, this is simply incredible.
Dale Sveum, the Brewers third base coach, will take over in an interim role as manager for the remainder of the season. Bench Coach Ted Simmons has been reassigned to an advisory role. Any other coaching changes will be announced later.
Update: Ned Yost "didn't see it coming". Insane.

Update 2: Joe Sheehan on why.

Yost has to take a big part of the blame as well, after making some of the worst tactical decisions you'll see. In the eighth inning of yesterday's first game, the Brewers were tied 3-3. Guillermo Mota allowed a leadoff single to Jayson Werth, and was lifted for Brian Shouse so that Shouse could face Chase Utley and Ryan Howard. (Charlie Manuel's refusal to always put a right-handed batter between those two is a big reason why the Phillies will have trouble winning a short series.) Utley sacrificed Werth to second, setting up Shouse versus Howard.

Yost elected to walk Howard to face Pat Burrell. This was... well, it strains my vocabulary to find the right word for it. Howard cannot hit left-handers, and would be a platoon player if performance mattered anywhere near as much as reputation does. Or if he had a competent manager. Howard is at .228/.313/.458 against lefties in his career, .212/.287/.410 this year. Howard. Can't. Hit. Lefties. Shouse, on the other hand, is in the major leagues for exactly one reason: lefties can't hit him, to the tune of .175/.192/.289 this year, and .211/.263/.325 for his career, which includes a bunch of years when he was barely a major leaguer. Manuel sending Howard up against Shouse was a continuation of a theme for the Phillies: not hitting for Howard when he has little chance of doing something good. He was giving Yost an out, and Yost gave it right back.

Update 3: BTF thread, which inexplicably didn't show up on the main page (maybe because it didn't have the General tag on the story?).

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i'm not sure it's that incredible. Surprising, yes, but they haven't been playing well.

maybe the Mets don't miss the playoffs in 2007 had they taken similar action with Randolph a year ago today. they missed the playoffs and ended up firing him June 18. They're going to win the NL East now.

Joe Sheehan wrote a justification at BP just now.

Time will tell - if they miss the playoffs, the front office won't be held too accountable for the firing, but if they make the playoffs, there'll be universal agreement it was the right thing to do.
Thanks for the tip.

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