Orioles’ Buck Showalter Clearly Wants to be Next Manager Fired

SBR Staff

Friday, May 18, 2018 4:44 PM UTC

Friday, May. 18, 2018 4:44 PM UTC

The Baltimore Orioles are an utter disaster. That could well mean the next manager fired in the majors this season is Buck Showalter.

The Cincinnati Reds were the first team in the majors to fire their manager this season, dumping Bryan Price back on April 19 in a move that was frankly overdue by about a year at least. The Reds still stink, but they’ve played better under interim manager Jim Riggleman, to the point he might have to be considered for the full-time gig.

Who might the next manager fired be? All signs sure seem to point to Baltimore’s Buck Showalter, especially after what he did Thursday night in Boston. Naturally, the Birds lost the game 6-2 to fall to 13-30. In the bottom of the fifth, Xander Bogaerts hit a three-run homer off Orioles starter Kevin Gausman to make it 6-0. OK, a good time to yank the starting pitcher. Plus, Gausman had already given up five stolen bases.

Except, Showalter did something that might be unprecedented in MLB history: He pulled his pitcher during the opposing batter’s home-run trot. Showalter actually left the dugout so early he crossed the third base line before Bogaerts even reached home plate.

[/]{"component": "embedHTML", "code": "

Showalter getting to the mound to take out Gausman after Bogaerts HR (before Bogaerts finishes rounding the bases).

Well then... pic.twitter.com/iJOA6JYWdB

— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) May 18, 2018
\n\n"}[/]

“I mean, I don’t know if you can do that or you can’t,” Bogaerts said after. “I kind of saw him as I was rounding third, you know?” “… I didn’t think anything of it (at the time), but afterwards, the guys, they’ve never seen stuff like that happen on a daily basis. That was weird.”

A manager simply can’t show up his pitcher like that – it’s begging to get fired.

The Orioles had a win total of 73 at Intertops entering the season after finishing 75-87 in 2017 and last in the AL East. They are going to finish well under that 73 total at the current pace: FanGraphs projects Baltimore to finish 69-93 and in the East basement again. The last time the team won fewer than 70 games was in 2011 in Showalter’s first full season. He had taken over about midway through 2010 and led the club to a 34-23 finish.

Showalter is a fine manager, and he has led the Orioles to three playoff appearances despite playing in perhaps the toughest division in baseball with the big-spending Red Sox and Yankees. The Rays and Blue Jays also have been good at times over that span. However, this year’s Orioles team is going nowhere and likely to deal star shortstop Manny Machado, center fielder Adam Jones and closer Zach Britton (assuming he’s back healthy) by the July 31 trade deadline because all three are set to hit free agency.

There’s really no reason to keep Showalter around the full season considering he’s not under contract for 2018. Neither is executive VP of baseball operations Dan Duquette. Guys simply aren’t going to play as hard for a lame-duck manager. Thus, it’s probably wise to keep betting against the Birds at Intertops as long as Showalter is in the dugout. As of this writing, Baltimore’s money units total of -$1637 is the second-worst in MLB ahead of only the disappointing L.A. Dodgers (-$2787).

The Orioles’ loss on Thursday was their 13th straight away from home, tying a club record. Baltimore doesn’t play at home again until May 28 and that’s against the powerhouse Nationals for three, followed by four against the Yankees. Will Showalter even make it to June?

Bring a friend to Intertops and earn profit for a lifetime!
comment here