Monday, October 11, 2010

Rothschild loves coaching this circus act.

I have become a bigger fan of Larry Rothschild over the last few years. My biggest issue with him has always been that his style tends (as it appears) to result in high pitch counts and leaves starters to not be able to go deep into games. This often time results in taxed bullpen and a staff that often times gives up a lot of walks.

Only one year in Rothschild’s 9 seasons in Chicago (2008) did I see a break from this trend.

Rothschild’s leadership has resulted in a pitching staff that has consistently been among the league leaders in strikeouts as well as a starting staff that if often in the top third in the league in ERA and almost always in the top 3 in least hits surrendered.

Rothschild, though, has been taken a huge brunt of the blame from fans for this team’s almost consist underachieving over the last decade. This is probably because he has been here longer now than any coach or player. They’ve changed the players, they’ve changed the manager, they’ve changed the coaches… GM’s…owners….and the team still sucks! It must be Larry Rothschild’s fault right?

Anyway, Larry Rothschild has picked up his 2011 option to remain with the Cubs. In reality, this doesn’t mean all that much. It is very possible that when the next manager of the team comes in, he could still be shown the door based on what that new manager wants for a pitching coach.

Personally, I’m a bit surprised. I kinda got the feeling the Rothschild was getting a bit tired of project after project being thrown his way over the years by GM Jim Hendry. Obviously not. Maybe he’s concerned that in the current economy, with the unemployment rate at 9.5%, he’d have a hard time getting a new job at the nearest Denny’s if he were to leave the Cubs.

Personally, I’m actually happy that Rothschild wants to return. I honestly don’t think there is anyone better available out there. The best option if Rothschild were to depart would be for the Cubs to take a chance on some no-name guy that has come unique ideas for how to handle a pitching staff….but that has a high chance of failure (just ask the Brewers about that). And, no, Greg Maddux is currently not a viable option as a pitching coach.


The Cubs NL rankings in some areas since Rothschild took over as Cubs pitching coach in 2002: