I was listening to the Norris and Davis Show this morning and they were discussing the possibility of Cal Ripken returning to baseball as a manager. They asked a couple of questions: Should the Nationals consider hiring Ripken? and Would how would Oriole fans feel if he took the job in Washington. Would they consider him a traitor?
My answer to the first question is no, the Nationals should not hire Ripken. Ripken might turn out to be a very good manager, but he has no experience. If you are a team that thinks you have the talent to go to the playoffs next year you don’t hire someone who has never managed before. You hire someone with experience and a proven record of success. If you are a team like the Houston Astros or the Milwaukee Brewers you can take a chance on a guy like Ripken. What do you have to lose? I would like to see Ripken back in the game. I hope he finds a spot and is successful.
I’m not a long time Orioles fan, so I can’t speak for them, but I can speak for how I would feel in a similar situation. If a beloved Braves player wanted to manage a team I would be all for it, regardless of where they landed. I would prefer they not be with a division rival because then I would have to hope they are unsuccessful, but I wouldn’t begrudge them taking any job. If the Braves aren’t going to hire them, they should take whatever job they can get. This is not being disloyal. The same should go for Ripken(unless he went to the Yankees. You are free to hate all Yankees). The Orioles are a team that first of all have a good manager and second, are too close to playoff contention to hire someone like Ripken. If they aren’t a possibility, you can’t expect him to just not manage if that is what he wants. Also would you want Ripken to manage the O’s and suck? Wouldn’t that be worse than him managing the Nationals?
I think we take this team loyalty thing a little too far. It’s a business and people need to what is best for their career. Would people hate me if I left my job and then returned at another local library(this is pretending that they don’t already hate me)? Why is it different for athletes?