When the Brewers hired David Stearns, it was a sign of hitting the reset button. Milwaukee was ready to turn the page as the last chapter or its glory faded and the ashes stopped smoking. Yet, when they hit reset on the franchise, they gave him power to make about 2 dozen roster moves but demanded he hold onto a piece of old: Craig Counsell.
It’s completely unfair to ask any GM to take the franchise in a truly new direction when forcing them to hold onto a manager installed by the old regime. But Mark Attanasio made it perfectly clear when starting his search for a new GM, do not mess with Craig Counsell.
It’s another chapter in Mark A’s book of mistakes, forcing the signing of Lohse, bringing back K-Rod over and over again, hiring Ken Macha, the camo-shirt that was up for vote during free t-shirt Friday voting. You can’t start over and tell the GM that he needs to hold onto this old manager.
Not only is this being forced on Stearns, but Counsell is the face of that crumbling regime. He was on the roster for most of Doug Melvin’s glory period as GM, then when he retired decided to become Melvin’s pet project. Don’t you think it’s likely that there will be some loyalty to Melvin and a resistance to Stearns new age thinking?
On top of that connection to the ways of old, Counsell also has no success as manager. He’s 61-76 after managing the Brewers team for most of the year last year. This was mostly the same team that was in first place for a majority of the 2014 season!
The other fear is the affect he could have on players. Counsell was never that successful as a player and had one of the worst batting stances in baseball history. What happens when he tries to get players to experiment with extending batting stances that but their swing in danger?
Counsell needs to go and the team needs to start anew. I think the best move the Brewers could make is to fire Counsell and try to work Tony LaRussa from the Diamondbacks.