Craig Counsell Robbed of NL Manager of the Year
A Milwaukee Brewers manager has never won Manger of the Year from Major League Baseball. The award started in 1983, and with the Brewers futility , you could see why they might not have a candidate. But there have been years where a Manager of the Year award felt appropriate. Take 2011, Ron Roenicke turned a Ken Macha-led team into a division winner. It didn’t happen then as Arizona Diamondbacks manager Kirk Gibson won the award. Then in 2018, Craig Counsell helped speed up a rebuild and caught the Chicago Cubs down the stretch. Yet baseball writers went with Atlanta Braves manager Brian Snitker. That’s a good joke by the writers to deny Counsell the award.
Don’t get me wrong, the Braves were a great story this year, and Snitker deserves some credit. Atlanta had a rebuild started and people believed them to be a year away from contending for a playoff spot yet they dominated the NL East. That’s a great accomplishment. Snitker did a great job keeping his guys level and focusing them on the major prize of the postseason. That said, do you remember how bad that division was last year? Philadelphia Phillies faded down the stretch, Washington Nationals were the biggest disappointment in baseball, New York Mets were trash and the Miami Marlins were one of the laughingstocks of the league. Braves had it on easy street. I get they were not expected to do this, but let me ask you, who expected Milwaukee to win over 90 games?
Counsell managed the Brewers through the hardest division in the National League. Counsell made the right moves to bring the Brewers back from six games down at the end of fucking August to win the division. How the hell is this guy not worthy of the Manager of the Year award. It’s ludicrous to think he would be denied of the honor. Counsell also did a masterful job with pushing the right buttons on his bullpen and managing Josh Hader’s innings. Sure, he made some bad mistakes through the year, but what manager didn’t? Baseball writers didn’t see that likely as much.
It’s too bad Counsell didn’t take it, but we all know he’s one of the best.