Texas Rangers manager Ron Washington has been anything but orthodox when it comes to running his club.
He routinely brings in the wrong pitcher to face a righty, but it all works out. And Washington will send his base runners at the most unthinkable moments and they get there safe.
That’s just the beginning of Washington’s madness.
In most circles he would be revered, especially after guiding his club to back-to-back appearances in the World Series. But look for much scrutiny and plenty more second-guessing after the Rangers came within one game of winning it all against St. Louis last week, only to have the Cardinals make an improbable comeback to capture the world championship flag.
Every strategic move Washington made during those games is being dissected. But it’s hard to be critical when those types of moves and decisions are what delivered the Rangers to the World Series for a second straight year.
"I do a lot by my gut," he said before Game 6. "There may be a point where someone says, 'You should have done this.' Well, you don't know my players. Maybe the strategists say that's what you do, but the flow of the game says something different. I'm in the flow."
Could Washington have made a couple of different decisions throughout the game that might have provided a different outcome at the end of either game? Of course. But that is the case in any contest.
Perhaps being lost in all of this is that, just maybe, the St. Louis Cardinals were a team of destiny this year. They certainly played that way from the end of the season until they won the title Friday.
Contact Terrance Harris at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter @Terranceharris.
(Photo: Jamie Squire/Getty Images)