Friday, October 3, 2008

Committing to a philosophy

Explaining what makes someone an effective coach can be difficult as so much of it is based on intangibles, but here's a terrific article on Angels manager Mike Scioscia and Dodgers manager Joe Torre, both of whom have guided their teams into the postseason.

Said one opposing manager:

"Both of them have a firm hand on the wheel. [Torre] just seems very consistent with how he goes about his day-to-day business. Even observing (Torre) during the game, he seems very much in control, which Mike is. They just seem very sturdy. What I've said about Mike is that he is a rock, and Joe me as being the same way."

Said Scioscia:

"There are definitely components of understanding the game of baseball and understanding strategy. There are components of being a good teacher. Communication is essential. Understanding the strategies of the game and making the lineup are certainly important components. And I think having a philosophy that you commit to and can stay true to is key. That might be the most important because I think a lot of guys have kind of struggled with that. There are always adjustments you have to make but not with philosophy."

Said Scioscia of Torre:

"He's very consistent. I think that's what the players crave, is something they can hang their hats on. He's been that, and not only in the years he's won. When we were contending every year (with the Yankees) and players came over to our ballclub, they pretty much knew what they had to do. I think that's pretty much what happens over there too."