Who’s On First? And A Little Business 101..

June 21, 2007 |

Is anybody else out there as confused as I am about the current Orioles situation?

Let’s see: Andy MacPhail is now COO and Director of Baseball Operations for the ballclub…and Jim Duquette and Mike Flanagan are still co-GMs, which means there are currently three people overseeing the "baseball operations" of our last place Birds.  Can I get a clarification on this, please?  I mean, who’s going to do what, exactly?  If a player is released/traded/sent down to the minors, is it MacPhail’s decision, or the combo platter GM’s, or all three together?

Is there a Plan B regarding the managerial hire?  Because when Joe Girardi says no, and I believe he will, who’s next through the revolving door at the front of the Warehouse?  Dusty Baker?  Davey Johnson?  (Speaking of him, I believe there will be a truce in the Middle East before he’d ever come back to work for the family again).  Rick Dempsey?  That’s an orange herring, right?  Please tell me so.  Don Baylor?  Who?

Will Dave Trembley even garner consideration?  After all, he’s managed over 2,000 minor league games, and in his first two games as "interim" manager, he’s shaken up the lineup, batting Millar third last night as an example.  Hell, what’s he got to lose anyway?  Not that we’d know how he feels or thinks about anything baseball related, because they never provided him an introductory press conference.  Typical.

I may not know a lot about the business of baseball, but I do have some practical, "real world" business experience.  And in that experience, I’ve learned a few things about job titles and responsibilities.  The most important factor is this: there can be only one person in charge at a time.  My company is in construction, so to draw a paralell to baseball would go something like this: One President, responsible for all business related issues, whether it’s bidding work, overseeing the daily performance of all projects, dealing with contracts, insurance, bonds, etc. (This would be MacPhail).  One Vice President, responsible for assisting the President in all business related dealings, etc. (This would be Duquette or Flanagan – one or the other – not both!).  One Project Manager per job, responsible for the daily performance and issues that arise (This would be like the Director of Minor League Ops, David Stockstill).  One Superintendent, responsible for the safety and production of his crew on that project (This is Trembley, or Manager X).  See, it’s a neat little chain of command, with duties made clear, expectations clearly stated, and a proper line that can be traced to the top of the organization.  If a worker on a job site has a problem, he goes to the Super with it, then it goes "up the ladder", if necessary.  People are paid to use their best judgement, to put the company’s best interests first in their daily actions, and to perform to the best of their abilities each day.

Of course, that’s just my idea of how to run a business, for what it’s worth.  And for what it’s worth, it seems to be working at my company.  We’re celebrating our 35th year in business this year.

One final note.  My company used to buy four seats in Section 14 for a Full Season Package.  We cancelled those tix five years ago.

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