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Manny Acta still likes sabermetrics and cool hats

Jan 26, 2010, 12:50 PM EST

Craig will be thrilled to know that new Indians manager Manny Acta wore another awesome hat while holding a “town hall meeting” for fans (and television cameras) last night.
MLB.com’s Anthony Castrovince reports that Acta won over the audience with his outgoing personality, but a) what else is an MLB.com writer going to say? and b) I’m more interested in the answer he gave when asked whether he’ll bunt more than predecessor Eric Wedge.
Here’s how Castrovince described the scene:

This would have been an opportunity for Acta to simply tell the fan what he wanted to hear, but instead he turned the tables on him, asking him if he would let one of his best hitters bunt with a man on first and none out in order to get the runner into scoring position. The fan answered in the affirmative, and Acta quickly told him he was wrong, before launching into his sabermetric-aided beliefs. He said unless the hitter in question is batting below .240, the stats suggest that you’re better off letting the hitter swing away.



“People think it’s the absolute right thing to bunt [in that situation],” Acta said, “but you need to check the stats. Back in the day, we didn’t have computers, we didn’t have Twitter, we didn’t have Facebook. They’ve come up with some things that make you open your eyes and not play like Casey Stengel used to play.”

While that’s probably not the most effective way to get the point across to a fan calling for more bunting, Acta is right and it’s good to see that his sabermetric leanings went with him from Washington to Cleveland. Of course, his 158-252 career record also made the trip, so charm and new-school beliefs will need to give way to winning soon enough. In the meantime, enjoy the cool hats and lack of bunting.

  1. Danny - Jan 26, 2010 at 1:08 PM

    It’s the same damn hat. The dude only has one hat.

  2. Phil - Jan 26, 2010 at 1:32 PM

    For God’s sake, that is not an “awesome” hat. That’s the kind of a hat your uncle from Lansing buys at the Stuckey’s on US 1 because he thinks he needs something to protect his balding pate while on the beach and he doesn’t care if he looks like a dork. That’s why he’s your uncle from Lansing. Cool hats are what Alian Delon wears in Le samourai and are found here.

  3. Grant - Jan 26, 2010 at 1:41 PM

    I dunno, looks a lot like the fedoras I saw on half of Williamsburg over the summer.

  4. Phil - Jan 26, 2010 at 1:57 PM

    I was referring to the fedora found in the first pic under men’s collections (and in pics 10,11,26,and 28 too), which resemble the hats Delon wears in the cited film. The rest of those travesties are as bad as Manny’s hat in the photo. I presume it was to the rest of those chapeaus you were comparing to tourist headgear. But if you were referring to the same hats, felt fedoras in summer are definitely not cool, even if Bogie wore one in the deserts of Casablanca. However, cool summer headgear can be found here.

  5. YX - Jan 26, 2010 at 2:14 PM

    I confirm (through pictures) that it in fact is the same (or identical) hat.

  6. (Not That) Tom - Jan 26, 2010 at 2:18 PM

    Stop your messing around
    Better think of your future
    Time you straightened the Tribe out
    Creating winning in town
    Manny,
    a message to you Manny

  7. Grant - Jan 26, 2010 at 3:23 PM

    I was saying that Manny’s hat looks like what the hipsters are wearing. Not the hats you linked. Those hats are much better.

    I have apparently failed at a tongue-in-cheek reference to the “coolness” (but actual dorkiness) of Brooklyn hipsters. Wouldn’t be the first time, I suspect.

  8. Phil - Jan 26, 2010 at 3:39 PM

    You didn’t fail. The only Williamsburg that came to mind was the colonial tourist trap in Virginia. [sigh]

  9. DiamondDuq - Jan 26, 2010 at 3:59 PM

    “People think it’s the absolute right thing to bunt [in that situation],” Acta said, “but you need to check the stats. Back in the day, we didn’t have computers, we didn’t have Twitter, we didn’t have Facebook. They’ve come up with some things that make you open your eyes and not play like Casey Stengel used to play.”
    Well you can keep your sabermetrics because Casey Stengel had a career .508 winning percentage with 8 World Series titles and yours, Manny Acta, is .385! How’s that for a statistic? Maybe you should start to “play like Casey Stengel used to play.”

  10. Prince - Jan 26, 2010 at 4:09 PM

    Diamond – We do know that Casey did it the wrong way. He had great talent to work with but had he made the “right” decisions that Manny was referring to, he would’ve won even more games. Plus, I don’t think Stengel would’ve performed any better with the 2007/8/9 Washington Nationals.

  11. Old Gator - Jan 26, 2010 at 4:31 PM

    That photo of Manny Acta looks a lot like Bob Hoskins in The Long Good Friday, but a Bob Hoskins on cortisone shots. What for, I have no idea. Hands across the water, Manny!

  12. Grant - Jan 26, 2010 at 8:14 PM

    Well, then I still failed. Because I assumed that everyone would get my New York-centric reference. And I don’t really want to be that guy, since I suppose there are other people in this country.

  13. Motherscratcher - Jan 27, 2010 at 12:55 AM

    Jeez, you buy a hat like that I’ll bet you get a free bowl of soup.
    I looks good on Acta, though.

  14. tsg - Jan 27, 2010 at 10:31 AM

    A gentleman really should remove his hat indoors.

  15. Berniece Swearengin - Feb 13, 2010 at 6:08 PM

    I saw this really good post today, found it on google. i think i may return some time.

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