Game 47, Mariners at Tigers
Washburn vs Rogers, 4:05 pm.
Before the game, McLaren announced that Jamie Burke is now going to be the personal catcher for both Jarrod Washburn and Erik Bedard, meaning that Johjima and Burke will split the catching duties 60/40.
“You’ve got to look at it two ways,” McLaren said. “If a guy is having success with one guy, you’ve definitely got to really weigh that heavily. That doesn’t lie. We’ve got kind of that situation with Burke and Bedard. It’s been a good combination and so we’re going to stick with it for a while.”
In this paragraph, John McLaren reinforces that he doesn’t have any idea how statistical analysis works. He sums up about 34 logical fallacies in a few sentences. He demonstrates ignorance of all the research done on the relationship between a catcher and a pitcher’s performance (there’s almost none), his inability to understand that the “hot hand phenomenon” is a horrible way to make decisions, and his remarkable lack of leadership.
Jarrod Washburn sucks. He’s a replacement level starting pitcher, not much better than guys sitting in Triple-A riding buses from Toledo to Durham. Jarrod Washburn doesn’t like pitching to Kenji Johjima, who the team is committed to as their starting catcher through 2011. A real manager, one with some semblance of authority and a willingness to do whats best for his team’s record, would tell the replacement level starting pitcher to learn how to like throwing to Kenji or sit in the bullpen and not pitch.
No other team in baseball would let a replacement level starter dictate the benching of their starting catcher. Not one.
John McLaren doesn’t deserve to be fired because this team is 18-28 or because they’re losing ugly. He deserves to be fired because he’s massively unqualified for a job that requires both real leadership and an understanding of how baseball works. Those are his two jobs; motivate his players and put the best team on the field. He’s incapable of motivating grass to grow and has no idea what his players can and can’t do. He neither leads nor understands, and it’s only in a backwards organization like this one that this guy could have ever been hired in the first place.