Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Put Sweet Lou in Baseball Hall of Fame

For once, Alex Rodriguez and I actually agree on something: Lou Piniella belongs in the Baseball Hall of Fame.

Piniella was a fine player, ending his big-league career with a .291 batting average, 102 homers and 766 ribbies. He was the 1969 American League Rookie of the Year and a two-time World Series champion as a player.

His epic managing career began when George Steinbrenner put the neophyte in the hot seat as the manager of the New York Yankees. Although his Yankees tenure didn't end particularly well, thanks to Steinbrenner's famous impatience, the Boss was clearly on to something. Piniella has compiled a .521 lifetime winning percentage as a manager and won more than 1,800 games, good for #14 on the all-time list for managerial wins. He’s won the Manager of the Year award three times. Most importantly, he won six division titles and a World Series championship with the Cincinnati Reds in 1990.

Sweet Lou may be most known for his on-the-field antics and countless ejections, which he notably mocked in a hilarious commercial for Aquafina bottled water. But that doesn't detract from his managerial skills, which have resulted in a long, successful career. His fiery temper turned some players off, but others such as ARod responded well to his tough love.

For once, ARod didn’t put his foot in his mouth. Put Sweet Lou in the Hall of Fame!

Thanks to Phil 5329 via en.Wikipedia for the photo.

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