I really do not get the recent criticism of Bobby Cox. I do not see how another manager would have manufactured more wins, much less a playoff appearance, out of the current Braves or the past few teams that have failed to make the playoffs. Jeff Schultz has a blog entry on the current status of Cox; he may be contemplating retirement.
But there’s something about this team that Cox’s critics still don’t grasp: The Braves are only good, not great. With Chipper Jones slumping, they’re closer to average. They have very good starting pitching but sporadic hitting.
If and when the Braves miss the playoffs again, it won’t be because of Bobby Cox, it will be because of the personnel. But it’s the easy answer, isn’t it? Michael Vick breaks a leg, fire Dan Reeves. And where are Joe Paterno’s critics now?
Cox deserves better than being swept under the carpet, and before the Glavine debacle, I would have said it would never happen to one of baseball’s all time great managers.