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  • Ethan Semendinger

My IBWAA Ballot: NL Manager of the Year

It's awards week! Today we continue with the NL Managers and the BBWAA/IBWAA nominees!


As is standard with the IBWAA, each voter was allowed a Top-3 vote for the Rookie of the Year. The 1st place player receives 5 points, 2nd place gets 3 points, and 3rd place gets 1 point.

 

3rd Place: Brian Snitker (Atlanta Braves)

Statistics: 101-61 Record (.623 WP%), 100-62 Pythagorean Record, Won NL East, +1 Luck, 21-37 Challenges (56.8 Overturn%), 1 Ejection

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Trying to become repeat champions in the MLB is becoming a near impossible thing to manage. The last teams to do it were the 1998-2000 New York Yankees and the model for doing so has changed a lot. Look to the NFL: the Los Angeles Rams (which is so wrong, they should've stayed in St. Louis) just won the last Super Bowl after getting a ton of talent at the deadline and selling out on other years for that year. Baseball is operating a very similar way. Go all-in on one year and figure the rest out later.


That's where I give Brian Snitker credit. The Braves were a 2nd place team in the National League East for such a long stretch last season but he continued to push them forward and ultimately take 1st place in the NL East right at the last stretch.

 

2nd Place: Buck Showalter (New York Mets)

Statistics: 101-61 Record (.623 WP%), 99-63 Pythagorean Record, 2nd in NL East, +2 Luck, 26-33 Challenges (78.8 Overturn%), 0 Ejections

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If you read my blurb above about Snitker, it almost seems hypocritical to place Showalter ahead of him. However, as a pure managerial output from this past season, it is hard to argue against Showalter. He had the most overturned challenges (tied with Rocco Baldelli) and had the highest rate of overturned challenges in the entire league. And it wasn't even close. He had an 18.8% lead over the 2nd place manager in baseball.


You can put a lot of stock into him being the manager as his team blew the lead in the NL East. You can give Snitker a lot of credit for that and take a lot away from Showalter. But, each did lead teams to an equal amount of wins, Showalter had the better "luck" (which I contribute to the manager), and the better challenges. He also didn't get ejected this year. I respect that.

 

1st Place: Oliver Marmol (St. Louis Cardinals)

Statistics: 93-69 Record (.574 WP%), 87-75 Pythagorean Record, 1st in NL Central, 0 Luck, 21-35 Challenges (60.0 Overturn%), 3 Ejections

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And even if you think I'm a fool for my 2nd and 3rd place finishers, it is hard to disagree with my pick for 1st place. Oliver Marmol- in his first year as a manager- he led his team to a division crown even while getting a little unlucky. That does take a bit out of his sails when talking about the success of his season, but even with that he had the 2nd best rate of winning challenges (behind Showalter). I also give him credit for getting the division lead in the NL Central over the Milwaukee Brewers and holding onto it at about the trade deadline.


This is the 2nd year in a row that I give the St. Louis Cardinals managers the #1 spot for the NL manager of the year award. They are a fantastically run franchise and other teams around the league should take note. I was shocked when they fired Mike Shildt after last year, but they obviously know better than me.

 

Honorable Mentions:

Dave Roberts (Los Angeles Dodgers)

Statistics: 111-51 Record (.685 WP%), 116-46 Pythagorean Record, 1st in NL West, -5 Luck, 12-33 Challenges (36.4 Overturn%), 1 Ejection


Rob Thomson (Philadelphia Phillies)

Statistics: 65-46 Record (.586 WP%), 99-63 Pythagorean Record*, 3rd in NL East, +2 Luck, 14-31 Challenges (45.2 Overturn%), 0 Ejections

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A little shoutout to these two managers as well. Dave Roberts has maybe the best team in baseball and he just won 111 games. I think most people could've done what he did (or better...he did have a -5 luck this year) without much concern or trouble. Though, the most important thing that matters is winning and his team did more of it than anybody else. However, it would've been too easy to give him a vote and it was too easy for him this year.


Rob Thomson also deserves a shoutout for what he did with a Phillies team that was on the brink of disaster. Yes, he got a little lucky, but he took a team that was losing and brought them to a winning record and into the playoffs. At the time of voting (not that Thomson got a vote, given the 3 manager restriction) I had already considered him a quality honorable mention. That was before they made the World Series. What a run!

 

Managers of the Year Award Finalists:

Nominations were announced at 6:00 PM on MLB Network yesterday for all the major awards. Here are the nominees for the BBWAA and IBWAA!


BBWAA:

American League: Terry Francona, Brandon Hyde, Scott Servais

National League: Dave Roberts, Buck Showalter, Brian Snitker


IBWAA:

American League: Terry Francona, Brandon Hyde, Scott Servais

National League: Buck Showalter, Oliver Marmol, Dave Roberts

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