A few weeks ago I wrote about my desire to find an objective way to evaluate managers. There has to be a better way than simply looking at wins and losses. I have neither the skill nor resources to work with advanced algorithms necessary for some of the managerial computer models. These simulations help rate managers just fine, but are well outside my realm of comprehension. What I’d like to do is rate a manager objectively by assigning point totals for success in specific categories and docking points for failures in other categories. The first category we’ll explore is postseason wins.
Tony LaRussa is, perhaps, the best manager of his generation, maybe one of the best all-time. But I’ll let every other site you read shower him with praise and thank him for 30+ years of baseball service. In this article he will simply be used as a tool in our experiment for rating managers. LaRussa has had his fair share of postseason success, so he makes a perfect example.
Tony LaRussa won 68 postseason games out of 123 postseason games managed. That equates to a postseason winning percentage of .553. For the sake of our evaluation we need the numbers expressed as ratios in order to keep our final managerial rating as a ratio expression. Doesn’t a manager rating of .597 sound so much better than a rating of 1,457? Those are arbitrary numbers obviously, but I think the ratio is easier on the eyes.
Unfortunately even this statistic is skewed over the short-term. A manager with only one trip to the post season may have a record of 0-3 or 1-3 or 2-3 if knocked out in the division series. Therefore, the other evaluation categories will become increasingly important, and one may have to discredit certain stats based on a limited sample size.
Going forward, we will look at other categories to use in our manager evaluation with the eventual end goal of being able to rate any manager out there.