Team Management

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Kendra Givens
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Team Management

Post by Kendra Givens » Tue Nov 05, 2019 11:05 pm

Those of you who follow American baseball might have heard that David Ross was officially named manager of the Chicago Cubs. He played catcher for the Cubs for 3 years, and he retired in 2016. Many people (myself included) are excited to have him back with the team. Others feel as though he won't be strict enough, as he is very close friends with many of the players who are on the team currently.

Do you think it's a good idea to hire retired team members as managers for sports teams? If you're a Cubs fan or follow baseball at all, do you think David Ross will be good for the Cubs as manager?
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Will Lestrange
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Re: Team Management

Post by Will Lestrange » Sun Nov 10, 2019 3:11 am

In baseball, the saying I remember is "It is easier to fire one manager than 25 players" - and the truth is the manager tends to take quite a bit of the blame when the team has an off season. Often, the manager may very well be hamstrung by decisions that the team's owner makes... but, of course, owning the team means the owner gets job security and may simply work their way through managers hoping one of them will work!

People underestimate how much sports is a business as opposed to simply a civic treasure; although people tend to remain loyal to their local teams as fans (or to university teams as alumni), there is less loyalty among players - and even less loyalty than that among staff such as coaches and managers! Hiring an alum of the team as a coach might very well excite the fanbase (civic pride/alumni pride), but I don't really see it making a difference either way: even if the manager was a player very recently and therefore friends with people on the team, that does not necessarily make a difference in the manager's skills as a manager! And if you look at much older alumni (e.g. Davey Johnson played for the Baltimore Orioles between 1965 and 1972 and then managed them in 1996 and 1997; in the two-plus decades in between, he played for 3 other MLB teams and managed 2 still different MLB teams), I don't see the effect Kendra mentioned mattering too much.

Outside of Muggle sports, I think the starkest example of being able to manage one's peers comes from the classroom: when Severus Snape began teaching in 1981, the fifth years and up had started at Hogwarts when Snape himself was a student! And while Professor Snape had his own issues with fairness and favouritism, his ability to be strict when need be shows that it is very possible to be a stern manager of your former peers and friends.
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