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Bench Talk / Off The Wire

Tiebreakers Today, Wild Cards Ahead


By Fred Wallace

 Hi, this is Fred Wallace with " Off the Wire ".


The Major League Baseball Playoffs begin this week with Wild Card elimination games tomorrow & Wednesday.

Today, there's 2 Tiebreaker Games to determine the National League Central & West.

Of course, the post season will not include the Toronto Blue Jays who are busily preparing for 2019.

And of course, the 2019 Blue Jays will be managed by someone other than John Gibbons.

As widely speculated through most of this season, the Blue Jays confirmed late last week that Gibbons would not be returning to manage the club.

It's funny how beloved Gibbons became in his final days at the helm, the fans saluting his Everyman approach to the day to day duties of managing a big league ball club.

Yes, John Gibbons had his detractors, even Gibbons sometimes wondered during his tenure if the Jays wouldn't be better off with someone else at the control.

Most of the anti-Gibbons crowd trotted out statistics that showed his winning percentage with the Jays, career-wise, was just over .500.

Ultimately, any manager is judged by the numbers, that's fair.

But the win-loss numbers aren't necessarily the most accurate gauge of what's truly happening..

Gibbons and the Jays won just over 70 games this year, which admittedly is poor.

But those 70 wins were accomplished with a ramshackle defence and an up and mostly down starting staff.

Those 70 wins were accomplished essentially without a an MVP third baseman or a proven shortstop.

Given those factors, Gibbons may have done a heroic job of running the Jays.

In baseball, maybe more so than any other sport, the coach or manager gets too much credit for winning and too much blame for losing. The reality is almost always somewhere in the middle.

And the reality for the Toronto Blue Jays and their next Manager, as I see it, isn't much brighter than what transpired this season.


I'm Fred Wallace


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