Girardi and Matheny were fired from their last managerial jobs in part for clubhouse communication issues beyond any reported for the Angels under Scioscia. In New York, general manager Brian Cashman said the Yankees had determined Girardi had not established "connectivity" with younger players. In St. Louis, Cardinals icon Yadier Molina ripped Matheny on Instagram.
Still, Girardi and Matheny have new jobs.
Scioscia would have loved to manage his hometown Phillies, but it probably did not help his cause that the general manager in Philadelphia is Matt Klentak, who was the assistant to Jerry Dipoto in Anaheim from 2012 to 2015. It is not unusual for there to be conflict between a manager and general manager, but it is unusual for the general manager to quit his job over it, as Dipoto did in Anaheim.
The trigger for his conflict with Scioscia was less the use of analytics and more about how a player could most effectively use them; whether players should get data directly from the front office or filtered through the coaching staff. That issue has largely resolved itself in the four years since Dipoto quit: Nearly every team, including the Angels, has added coaching positions devoted to distilling the flood of analytical data into nuggets players can remember and apply.
"The amount of information and data is huge," Scioscia said. "You have to narrow it down to what's applicable. A lot of the data is for player acquisition and projected performance. There is a piece of the pie that you're going to be able to apply in the sixth inning of a game. Sorting that out, I think, is where this is going to go."
It is fair to suggest that Scioscia's time with the Angels simply had run its course when he resigned effective at the end of the 2018 season, but it is also fair to suggest that he might flourish elsewhere. Fresh starts do not solely apply to players. Scioscia might have been demanding, but he also inspired a generation of managers to use laughter and clubhouse stunts to bond teams during the drudgery of spring training.
"Mike Scioscia would definitely be an effective manager today," Hunter said. "All he does is require you to play hard, go first to third, and be ready to play every day."
It appears as if Scioscia will sit out the 2020 season -- out of the dugout, at least. He said teams asked whether he might serve on a coaching staff next season, and he passed.
"I'm not really out there looking for anything," he said. "I'm having a great time. I feel good.
"What will be, will be. I'm just living."
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