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Is Bob Geren on the hot seat?

Jan 26, 2010, 3:20 PM EDT

Geren.jpgThe Chronicle’s Ray Ratto breaks down the numbers that are up against the A’s fourth year manager:

There have been 663 managers in major-league history, 176 of whom have
held the job since 1980. Of those 176, 46 have held the same job for
more than four years, which is where Geren would be at season’s end. Of
those 46, 10 have held the job for at least four years without taking
that team to the postseason. Of those 10, only four have not taken any team to the postseason. And only one has a lower winning percentage than Geren’s.

Ratto notes, however, that Geren and Billy Beane are really, really close and that the A’s, in general, are notoriously dismissive of a manager’s impact on wins and losses. Geren is cheap, both this season and in terms of his 2011 team option, and there isn’t any strong reason to believe that he’s either the cause of the A’s recent woes or an impediment to future success.

I think more telling than anything the team does with Geren this year is whether the fans and newspapers in the Bay Area will be calling for his head if the A’s get off to a bad start. I bet it will be rather quiet. Why? Because my fear — and what should be the fear of the A’s front office — is that people in Oakland are far less angry at the course the team is taking than they are utterly indifferent.

  1. APBA Guy - Jan 26, 2010 at 3:35 PM

    I don’t think your last paragraph quite captures it. “Indifferent” isn’t a word I’d use.
    As I commented earlier, nobody in the starting 9 last year had an OPS over .800. Not Geren’s fault.
    Last year the highest % of rookies in MLB history were starting pitchers in games for the A’s. Again, not Geren’s doing.
    Look, the results are predictable with this kind of assemblage. Noboy is saying it’s Geren’s fault, and a lot of people say that the owners and Beane should do/have done more to prevent this.
    But the fans are voting with their feet and staying away from the stadium. There is a complete mismatch of value to price in the A’s current product. They are putting on the field basically a AAA product and charging major league prices, prices which they’ve nearly doubled in the past 10 years for the only seats in which you can actually see anything at the Mausoleum.
    Fans aren’t indifferent. You see A’s jerseys, sweatshirts, hats, etc all over. But they/we aren’t going to be ripped off, either. And firing Geren won’t change any of that.
    Drop ticket prices, field a better team, you’ll see more fans at the games. Then we can judge Geren.

  2. gumbercules - Jan 26, 2010 at 3:38 PM

    If I were in the East Bay, I don’t know that I’d be able to work stir up much sentiment either way (the indifference of which we speak). Why do you really want to get fired up over a team that could end up playing in Orlando, or at least San Jose or wherever, before too long?

  3. bEastBay - Jan 26, 2010 at 3:47 PM

    I concur with APBA Guy, but would also add that the fans have been informed by the owners that they/we are merely keeping the team in Oakland until they can find a better place in the south bay (in or near San Jose). It’s hard to maintain enthusiasm when ownership feels no loyalty to the fan base.

  4. mgflolox - Jan 26, 2010 at 5:14 PM

    I may have mentioned this before, but when our teams are actually trying to compete, and not poor-mouthing themselves, East Bay fans will support them. The A’s drew 2.5-2.9 million fans during the Bash Brother days (1988-92), and the Warriors used to sell out every game during the 1st Don Nelson coaching go-round. If we have a team that’s committed to the fans, the fans will commit to the team.

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