Number Six Thing to Look Forward to: Experienced Manager
Some people believe that a Manager has minimal impact on the outcome of a game, while others believe he sets the tone and has an impact – particularly in the use of pitchers and the bullpen. Kevin Cash was handed a lengthy deal when he took over the helm in TB and management showed faith in his abilities.
With a year under his belt, Cash will now look to use that knowledge to the Rays benefit in 2016. There’s no doubt that his comfort level will rise, that he now knows his players a lot better than he likely did in 2016, and that the Rays should benefit as a whole if he applies lessons learned appropriately.
When the Cubs hired ex-Rays Manager Joe Maddon, they likely never expected to make the playoffs in their first season, but his presence helped them achieve that goal. Some argue that Maddon was a huge reason they made it that far, and I’d argue that if the Rays are going to make a big leap in 2016, they’ll need Cash to make the most of his experience. With his makeup and aptitude, there’s no reason to expect any less from him this season.
Next: Number Seven Thing to Look Forward to: A Better Short-Stop