Dusty Baker has been one of the more successful managers in recent major league history, leading three different franchises to the playoffs and the Giants to the World Series.
Baker even got the Cubs to within five outs of the World Series. Think about that for a second. The sorry-ass Cubs.
But despite his resume, which is about as loaded as any managerial resume out there, Baker can’t land a job. In fact, Baker can’t even get a team to call him back.
And he’s tried. Three times this offseason, the unemployed Baker has reached out to teams with managerial openings. Three times he was rebuffed without even the courtesy of a call.
“What’s it take to call back and say, ‘No, thank you?’” Baker wondered aloud to Daniel Brown of the San Jose Mercury News.
I wonder the same thing. Why can’t Dusty Baker at least get a phone call back from teams that don’t want him as their manager?
It’s true, Dusty does tend to burn bridges. He exited his San Francisco and Chicago jobs in less-than-friendly fashion, and it was the same thing again with Cincinnati.
The Reds had floundered for years in utter irrelevance before Baker got them are made them into a contender. They made the playoffs two straight years under Dusty, but unfortunately, went completely belly-up in both postseasons.
The criticisms rained down on Dusty in the wake of his latest postseason failures. Dusty can’t win the big one. Dusty plays favorites on the roster. Dusty doesn’t get in guys’ faces enough.
The Reds wanted Dusty to retire rather than have to fire him, but the ever-blunt Baker said no way, you’ll have to fire me. So they fired him.
Maybe it’s the postseason record that scares teams away. Or maybe it’s the personality. The honesty? The prickliness?
Who knows. For some reason, performance or personality or something darker, the guy who darn near won the World Series with San Francisco, darn near got the Cubs back to the World Series and certainly restored the Reds to relevance, can’t even get anyone on the phone.
What gives MLB?