On the anniversary of Ned’s Brewers firing, we hope for history repeating

Conrad McGorkin & Brian Graham

It was on this date in 2008, the Brewers fired manager Ned Yost, when the team was tied for the NL Wild Card spot. The Brewers record at the time was 83-67. The Royals current record is 81-67 – 68 losses if you count the 4-2 score suspended Cleveland game to be resumed on Sept 22 in Cleveland. Just a fun side note, Kyle Davies and the Royals beat the Mariners 3-0 in Seattle on this date in ’08 as well. In fact, he threw eight innings of four-hit, no walk, eight-strikeout stuff at the M’s. Weird.

What isn’t weird is Ned Yost yosting his team in a playoff race.

Entering September 2008, the Brewers were 80-56. Milwaukee came into the month with a 5½-game lead in the Wild Card over the Phillies, however, lost 11 of 14 – including a four-game sweep completed by the Phillies over the weekend leading up to the 15th. Starting the month 3-11 didn’t sit well with the Brewers front office so they decided to protect themselves from being yosted by releasing him. Yost was replaced with third base coach, Dale Sveum. The Sveum led Brewers went 7-5 to finish the season 90-72 and won the NL wild card spot. They went on to lose to the Phillies 3-1 in the NLDS.

Dale Sveum is also on this staff.

History can repeat itself. It’s not too late.

Yesterday was it for us. It really was.

As we all know, Jason Vargas got into a little trouble in the top of the 6th with the Royals leading 4-3. Mookie Betts and Xander Bogaerts, who hit a 3-run jack in third inning after the Royals scored four runs in the 2nd, began the inning with singles. Runners on first and second with nobody out. Ned opts to leave Vargas in to face the left-handed hitting David Ortiz. Vargas is able to get Ortiz to fly out to Alex Gordon in left, however both runners advanced. Out comes Ned to the mound and signals for a relief pitcher. Conrad is watching the game with his 15-yr old and 12-year old sons. When Crow’s name is announced, both boys say, “Wow…that’s dumb.” These two boys are die-hard Mizzou fans and also FIFTEEN AND TWELVE YEARS OLD and know this move is going to end BADLY. How can a Major League manager not recognize it? Crow entered a one run game sporting a 7.27 ERA over his last 17 1/3 innings pitched having allowed 20 hits, six of them home runs, and 11 walks in that time. He had also allowed two unearned runs and three of seven inherited runners to score during that time. He walks the first batter, Yoenis Cespedes on six pitches. He miraculously is able to get Allen Craig to strikeout on a full count and sixth consecutive fastball. Ned you got lucky…get him out NOW! Going to Crow was indefensible to begin with, staying with him is incomprehensible. Ned of course leaves Crow in.

Because, Ned.

Now approaching the plate is Daniel Nava, hitting .286/.368/.380 with all three of his HR vs. RHPs. When facing a LHP, Nava hit .158/.200/.193 striking out 18 times in 57 ABs. Ned…if you’re not going to take advantage of his severe platoon splits, at the VERY LEAST, Ned, utilize one of the premium RHP’s you have at your disposal. Really, one of those guys can go an inning and a third. It’s been done and for crying out loud, one of them was a starting pitcher last year. These players do NOT have to be pinned down to specific innings or situations. In the postgame interviews Ned claimed to need or want a strikeout. Crow strikes out just five per nine innings. Use Wade Davis. Use Davis for the last out in the sixth and then the seventh. He is your most likely candidate to get the K and prevent the horrible thing that ended up happening – a grand slam. Ned also claimed to be frustrated as the team was just “one out away from getting to Herrera.” What? Says ONLY YOU, Jackass. On the first pitch from Crow, Nava tags a Grand Slam over the right field wall. Boom…#Yosted.

When this team has a lead, protect it. This pitiful offense simply cannot overcome poor decisions and “strategy” by this manager. The fact that he is so condescending and hypocritical to media and fans makes tolerating him even more impossible.

In fact, he straight lies and makes stuff up.

Asked why he didn’t just use Herrera an inning early in that spot, he said, “Aaron Crow’s inning is the sixth inning. Kelvin’s in the seventh.”

God Damn idiot.

In 64 appearances, Crow has appeared in the sixth inning NINE times.

“Dayton Moore should have walked down to the dugout and fired Yost right then and there,” me dad said.

I agree 100%. Many of us do.

But, this, is just the tip of the iceberg. Ned’s decisions killed the Brewers and now it is now happening again in Kansas City.

Brian’s friend Nick posed this today on our Facebook Page: “Hey just curious because I’m just a typical fan not a baseball guru but I enjoy reading what you guys think. Why the hatred for Yost? I don’t love the guy but I was 6 months old the year we won the World Series so IF we make it this year it will be my first Royals playoff game ever. I mean the guy does make some bad decisions at times even I can tell that but to me it seems he’s done better than any other manager has done in my 29 years. Is it because we could be so much better without him? Or what? I’m ignorant when it comes to some of the deeper parts of baseball strategy so he could be a complete clown but it doesn’t seem that way to me.”

Brian said, “If we make the playoffs, it’ll be in spite of him. He is not the worst manager in the league, and there is one who is worse in the AL Central (Robin Ventura). He is the best manager we’ve had since Hal McRae, but it doesn’t excuse his arrogance, his stubbornness, his narcissism, blatant idiotic decisions (like Crow yesterday) and ignoring all baseball logic, just to say the least.”

Justin said, “Brian pretty much covered it. To quote Doc Holliday ‘I’m sure of it, I hate him.’ This team has more talent than they’ve had in a long, long time. The strength of the back end of the bullpen also makes it one of the easiest teams in all of baseball to manage. But somehow Ned always f***s it up!! Aaron “gasoline” Crow should never pitch in a close game. Hosmer coming back and playing first base after his injury?? Are you kidding me Ned?? We were the hottest team in baseball with Billy at first base, why screw with that? I could go on and on, but I think you get the point.

We do, but lets keep going.

Conrad says,” I agree he is the best we’ve had since McRae…he is still an ass. He doesn’t stack his best OBPs, he is far too committed to some players (Hosmer, Moose etc) and not enough to others (Butler). Being dead set on bullpen roles is brutal. The most important outs in a game can be in the 6th inning. See yesterday…His refusal to play Billy Butler at all is baffling. On the bench for eight times in 10 games? Come on, idiot. Billy has certainly been a disappointment this season, but has not earned the banishment to the bench he has received. This team has disappointed offensively in EVERY WAY IMAGINABLE. No player on this team has hit the ball in the way the organization feels they are capable of. Why is Butler being singled out? Why has Ned (until recently) forced the career OBP of .316 and .293 in 2014, Omar Infante into the 2 hole much of the year? What has Eric Hosmer shown all season that locked him into the 3-hole for 274 of his 455 AB’s? Is it his .206 AVG at home? Maybe the .313 OBP? Why in the HELL does Ned refuse to go to one of the three best relief pitchers in the MLB in 2014 before the seventh inning? Are bases loaded outs in the sixth-inning less important?”

I very much believe that baseball managers contribute only slightly to a team’s success. That little bit matters though. It seems that managers may actually have more of a negative effect than a positive one. But, that little bit matters. Especially on a team so offensively challenged as this one. Who misses Kevin Seitzer by the way? Five losses due to mismanagement, or poor strategy, like bunting and giving away outs in the first inning, can be the difference in a Division title or missing the playoffs all-together. The race the Royals are involved in is that close this year.

These feelings toward Ned aren’t new. In fact, a year ago today, Conrad wrote this obscenity-laden hate piece toward Ned: http://kcsportsnation.com/2013/09/because-its-ned-2/

Because, Ned.


Follow us on Twitter: @KCSportsNation

Follow Brian on Twitter: @briangraham624

Follow Conrad on Twitter: @ConradMcGorkin


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