Thursday, May 10, 2007

The Skipper, Too

After Tito got his 300th win as a Sox manager two nights ago, my girlfriend asked if Jimy Williams had reached that plateau with Boston. We remembered he got that fateful Kerrigan-ified axe during '01, and I figured he started around '98, which would've given him somewhere in the 300-vicinity. Turns out I was wrong on the start date--it was '97. So Jimy is well above Tito, with 414 wins. In fact, only four dudes have led the Red Sox to more wins than Jimy did.

Joe Cronin easily tops the list with 1,071 victories. Next is Pinky Higgins, who managed in the 50s and 60s, with 560. (He also had 556 losses.) Bill Carrigan, skipper of the 1915 and 1916 champions, tallied 489 Ws (while losing 500). Jimmy Collins, the first person to manage a team to a World Series title, racked up 455.

After Jimy, Don Zimmer is the sixth and final member of the 400-club with 411. Eddie Kasko is next on the all-time list with 345, followed by Ralph Houk (who started when I was five years old, essentially the first Sox manager I have a strong memory of, though I vaguely remember Popeye aka the Gerbil) with 312.

And that's where Francona comes in. Last night, he tied Joe Morgan with 301 wins. Soon he'll pass the Magic Man for ninth, though it's good to know ol' Joe will stay in the Sox' all-time top ten for a good while. (Note to newer or younger baseball fans: this isn't the Joe Morgan you're thinking of...)

To Trupiano-fy* the top nine for you, we've got Cronin, Higgins and Carrigan; Collins, Williams, and Zimmer; and Kasko, Houk, and Francona/Morgan.

John McNamara fittingly is now just shy of the top ten, with 297 wins.

*One thing I won't miss about Trup' is the way he would give you each team's starting nine, then repeat them in three groups of three. Come on, Trup'. We got it the first time.

Higgins and Cronin were also bone deep racists whose attitudes towards integrating the team cost the Red Sox far more games than was ever won under either of them.
Making Tito seventh among non-racist managers!
How can you take a shot at the Trup? And wouldn't it be funny if Francona got in a dugout runway fist fight with, I don't know, like, JD Drew, then stormed back into the dugout like Tollway Joe ranting, "I'm the manager of this nine!" Where would that rank on Bill Simmons' Unintentional Comedy Scale?

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Location: Rhode Island, United States