“It’s okay. We’ll be back.”
This was Dusty Baker’s quote as he was leaving the stage following the post-game press conference after the Houston Astros dropped Game 6 of the World Series, effectively crowning the Atlanta Braves the champions.
Dusty Baker, who was only signed through this last season, appears to be poised to make another run as the Astros manager.
As reported by Jose de Jesus Ortiz of Our Esquina Thursday, the Astros will hold a press conference with owner Jim Crane, general manager James Click and Baker on Friday at 3 p.m. CST.
This comes after Bob Nightengale of USA Today reporting that the Astros are expected to re-sign Baker to a new contract for 2022 within the next few days. I posted on Twitter that Baker should return as the manager. While fan reactions were mixed, Baker is simply the right choice for this team at this point in time.
Baker is a fine mix of old-school baseball and being open minded on the analytical aspects of the game and far removed from his earlier days where he was admonished for his anti-analytic stances. He is a great motivator for the young, upstart players and appeals to the wily veterans who have been around for awhile.
Fans seem to think Baker’s decision making is sporadic at times. Game 5 of the World Series was managed masterfully, though. I would argue that the manager won that particular game with lineup adjustments, well-time pitching substitutions and overall game plan.
Ultimately, Baker was not the reason the Astros lost the World Series in Game 6. Baker had all the right pieces in places, and the Astros simply failed to execute. The game of baseball is a fickle beast.
For most teams and managers, just making it to the World Series is an achievement in itself. For the Astros, making their third World Series appearance in the last five seasons, and for Baker, who just managed in his second World Series, there is definitely some urgency to run it back after getting so close this year.
Prior to the announcement of the press conference, Baker mentioned at the Travis Scott charity softball event at Minute Maid park that he would be discussing his future with the team, and if they come to an agreement, he would be back next year.
A couple days ago, when Jose Altuve was asked if he wants Baker back as his manager; “Yes, absolutely.” That should be all the argument you’d need to hear on the matter. Carlos Correa also mentioned that Baker should return.