Cincinnati Needs To Address Manager's Record Pace Of Ejections
Bobby Cox's Record For Career Ejections Might Be In Jeopardy
Bell's Approach Is Not Really Adding Up To Wins For The Reds
Manager David Bell has been tossed nine times in one hundred games, so the average indicates he will get six more ejections before the end of the season. He is on pace to accomplish in ten years what it took Bobby Cox almost thirty years to do, which is a rather dubious record.
On no fewer than 138 occasions was the long time skipper of the Atlanta Braves thrown out of a game, one of the least admirable marks of his noteworthy 29 years as a manager. Given that he managed nearly 4700 games, Cox got the boot about four times a year.
Bell, the first year manager of the Reds, is on pace to quadruple that sum In 2019. The only current skipper who comes close to Bell is Ron Gardenhire of the Detroit Tigers, who has been tossed five times.
In actuality, you could with justification stick an additional ejection on Bell, considering the ugly incident from a recent game with the Pittsburgh Pirates. The Cincinnati skipper was tossed in the third inning, only to rush on the field to join in a brawl that erupted in the bottom of the eighth.
History has a few examples of managers reappearing after ejections, most notably Bobby Valentine. After getting the boot from the home plate umpire, the New York Mets skipper was caught on camera sitting in the dugout wearing a fake nose, mustache and glasses disguise.
While that incident elicited much humor for the baseball world, there is absolutely nothing funny about the recent incident with David Bell. Not only did he defy an umpire order to leave the dugout, he did so with the sole intent to engage in an ugly brawl.
Major League Baseball did suspend Bell for six games, but the Reds must send an even bigger message to their manager. After all, he was hired to lead his team for 162 games this season, but because of his antics he has fallen well short of that number.
Let's face it. If any of us were to get thrown out of our offices or job sites nine times, we would in no uncertain terms be fired. Most likely, we would be canned after the third incident if not before, so the Cincinnati front office should long ago have run out of patience with Bell.
Defenders of his managerial approach chalk the excessive ejections up to Bell being "fired up", a trait that his players on the lowly Reds would do well to emulate. A quick assessment of the record, however, indicates that his fiery approach has not worked at all.
Cincinnati has the same winning percentage or more appropriately, losing percentage, as last year under Bryan Price and Jim Riggleman. After all of the headline deals the front office made over the winter, such as bringing in starting pitchers Tanner Roark and Sonny Gray as well as slugger Yasiel Puig, most fans expected considerable improvement in the record from in 2018.
Puig, who was traded to Cleveland at the very time he began to partake in the melee, was himself at the root of some of Bell's ejections. As the manager Bell several times came out of the dugout to protect an upset Puig, which might excuse a few of the ejections.
Even though Puig is no longer his responsibility, do not expect Bell's embarrassing pace of ejections to decrease. If he cannot keep himself under control, one thing is for sure. Bobby Cox's record of career ejections will withstand, for Bell will not be able to stay employed as a manager for the ten years it would take him to surpass it.