So outrageous were yesterday’s announced results of NL Manager of the Year voting that at first we were certain that dozens of news outlets everywhere had misprinted them. Manny Acta fifth in the voting? Only four votes for ChairManny, and each vote of the third-place variety? Surely some editor somewhere botched the story and it was merely reprinted and reposted incorrectly everywhere. Surely Manny received the 33 first-place votes he deserved and not the 0 he reportedly received, right?
Sadly, no, and what we are left with is the greatest snubbing since July’s All-Star game and Gold Glove voting for third base. The NL award went to Arizona’s Bob Melvin, who led the relatively well-funded and non-MLB-neglected Diamondbacks to a first round playoff sweep at the hands of the Colorado Rockies. Melvin, whose Diamondbacks also featured a fairly stable pitching rotation of Major-League caliber pitchers and a non-cobbled-together bullpen, beat out even less-deserving candidates Charlie Manuel of Philadelphia (see “playoffs, disappearing in” and “fans, turned on by”), Clint Hurdle of Colorado (his case could be made), Lou Pinella of Chicago (another one who could be grateful that only the regular season is taken into account by voters), and Bud Black of San Diego (??).
After that in the voting came Manny, whose modest four third-place votes mirrored the modesty of the man (how’s that for cheese?). Of course, Man Act doesn’t need awards, and inferred as much when he said, perhaps referencing DCO and other ‘tism-lovers, “I think the people in D.C. have made me feel like I won anyway. That just made me happy.”
In the end, maybe it’s not such an outrage. Like utterly wrong-headed and now-obviously foolish predictions of 120 losses, such snubbing can serve as further motivation (and at least we’re not the Boston Globe, quasi-complaining about perceived award injustices in the face of a world championship; call the transformation of Boston into New York complete). When the imminent World Series celebration comes to the Navy Yard, it won’t matter anyway.