When the Chicago White Sox officially introduced Robin Ventura as their new manager today, general manager Kenny Williams admitted that he had given serious thought to something that hasn’t been done in the majors since the mid-1980s.
During the press conference, Williams revealed that he considered asking White Sox first baseman Paul Konerko to be a player manager.
It was considered long enough for me to realize that Paul is a very cerebral person and he would probably drive himself nuts right now playing and managing at the same time, Williams said. But that’s the kind of respect I have for him that, yeah, I did consider it. Then I thought I think I would rather him be focused more on hitting third or fourth in the lineup and driving in 100 runs rather than trying to worry about 25 other guys in addition to it. We are trying to win.
Player/managers have not been in vogue since Pete Rose carried the dual position for the Cincinnati Reds from 1984-86. Before that, it was Frank Robinson (1975-76, Cleveland Indians) and Joe Torre (New York Mets, 18 games in 1977).
Being a manager in today’s day and age is tough enough, dealing with a different “style” of personalities in the clubhouse as opposed to decades ago, so Williams was probably smart in re-thinking his thoughts about Konerko.
However, it certainly brings up an intriguing scenario—which player on each MLB team would be well-suited to handle both playing and managing?
We at Bleacher Report will take a stab at who we think would be the most qualified player on each MLB team to carry the role of player/manager.
Note: Keep in mind that with this list, we're not looking to replace any current managers (although it could be debated that some need to be replaced), we are merely fantasizing/joking about potential player/managers of the near future.