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The Man in the Dugout: Baseball's Top Managers and How They Got That Way

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The Man in the Dugout

Baseball's Top Managers and How They Got That Way

By Leonard Koppett

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Format: Hardcover, 352 pages, Expanded Edition
Published In: United States, 01 February 2000
Baseball fans love to second-guess managers' strategies and speculate about their styles of managing, and Leonard Koppett is no exception. Koppett brings 52 years as a working baseball writer to his understanding of these men in the dugout. His analysis is based on personal interaction with all of the managers active since 1950 and their descriptions and judgments of the generation of men who preceded them. Every manager inherits his method from some influential manager he played for. Three seminal figures -- John McGraw, Connie Mack, and Branch Rickey -- form the trunk of a genealogical tree whose branches have eventually intertwined, but whose key characteristics remain identifiable nearly a century later in the style of current headliners like Joe Torre, Jim Leyland, Tony LaRussa, Dusty Baker, and Bobby Cox. This highly acclaimed study, first published in 1993, has been updated to the year 2000 and now includes some recent winning managers and completes the careers of others.

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A Hall of Fame sportsriter analyzes managers' stragegies

Table of Contents

CONTENTSPreface to the Expanded EditionIntroductionPart I: The Creators1. The Antecedents2. John McGraw3. Connie Mack4. Branch RickeyPart II: The Developers5. Miller Huggins6. Joe McCarthy7. Bill McKechnie8. Casey StengelPart III: The Descendents9. Leo Durocher10. Al Lopez11. Frank Frisch12. Paul Richards13. Loose EndsPart IV: The Moderns14. Walter Alston15. Ralph Houk16. Alvin Dark17. Billy Martin18. Dick Williams19. Earl Weaver20. Sparky Anderson21. Tommy Lasorda22. The Rest of the Story23. Looking AheadA Final WordAppendixIndex

About the Author

Leonard Koppett has been writing about baseball since the 1940s (his earliest memories include seeing Babe Ruth hit and John McGraw manage) for the New York City newspapers, the San Francisco Bay Area newspapers, and The Sporting News. He is author of half a dozen baseball books including Koppett's Concise History of Major League Baseball (Temple). He is the winner of the J. G. Taylor Spink Award from the Baseball Writers' Association of America. Koppett is the only sportswriter named to the writers' wing of both baseball and basketball Halls of Fame.


In December 1992, Koppett was selected for the writer's wing of the Baseball Hall of Fame, in recognition of over 40 years of high-quality baseball writing for the Sporting News , the New York Times , and many other publications. He is also an entertaining and insightful author best known for A Thinking Man's Guide to Baseball ( LJ 8/67). This book provides an anecdotal analysis of the various qualities of the most successful and influential managers of this century. Koppett examines their backgrounds, skills, and weaknesses, and then traces their lineage to three seminal figures: John McGraw, Connie Mack, and Branch Rickey. An appendix lists the managers for teams that finished in first place since 1960, along with the managerial lines to which they belong. This title will be an excellent addition to any sports collection.-- John Maxymuk, Rutgers Univ. Lib., Camden, N.J.

"Leonard Koppett is the perfect man to write a book about managers. He could've been a terrific manager if he hadn't decided to become a terrific sportswriter. Koppett understands people. He is a master of analysis, statistical or theoretical." --Dick Schaap "Long before the 'scholarly' study of baseball became something of a cottage industry, Leonard Koppett was out there doing it on his own with his keen reporter's eye, tireless research, and logical mind. Through the years, reading Koppett has been a joy and an education." --Bob Costas "What a pleasure it is to read Leonard Koppett on the history and science--no, make that Art, with a capital A--of managing a major-league baseball team." --Robert W. Creamer, author of Babe: The Legend Comes to Life, Stengel, and Baseball in '41 "Nobody in sports has ever provided your brain with a better workout than Leonard Koppett. To borrow from the old E. F. Hutton spot, 'When Leonard Koppett talks, I listen--very, very attentively.'" --Al Michaels

The theory espoused by Koppett, a former New York Times sports columnist, is that all modern managers are descended from three seminal figures: John McGraw, who established the principle that the manager is the unquestioned boss of his team; Branch Rickey, who organized the teaching fundamentals; and Connie Mack, whose concentration on finding talented players enabled him to build two dynasties decades apart. Koppett's genealogy, for example, traces the influence of McGraw through Frankie Frisch and Leo Durocher to Bill Rigney. This otherwise splendid and original book overemphasizes New York managers, however. Among the 19 in-depth portraits, 11 are of men who led the Yankees, Giants, Dodgers or Mets. Photos not seen by PW. (Mar.)

EAN: 9781566397452
ISBN: 1566397456
Publisher: Temple University Press
Dimensions: 26.04 x 18.44 x 2.92 centimetres (0.81 kg)
Age Range: 15+ years
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