Bobby Cox, Joe Torre and The Top 100 Major League Managers Of All Time

Asher ChanceySenior Analyst IOctober 20, 2010

Bobby Cox, Joe Torre and The Top 100 Major League Managers Of All Time

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    ATLANTA - OCTOBER 11:  Manager Bobby Cox #6 of the Atlanta Braves waves to the crowd after the Braves were defeated by the San Francisco Giants 3-2 during Game Four of the NLDS of the 2010 MLB Playoffs on October 11, 2010  at Turner Field in Atlanta, Geor
    Jamie Squire/Getty Images

    The 2010 season will go down in baseball history for what will be perhaps the biggest loss of managerial talent the game has ever suffered in a single year.

    We now know that Tony La Russa will be back with the Cardinals next year, but that only means the damage is being contained; Major League Baseball will nevertheless begin next season without managerial icons Bobby Cox, Joe Torre, or Lou Piniella.

    With Charlie Manuel not getting any younger, and Jim Leyland and Cito Gaston looking just plain tired at the end of last season, who knows where the carnage will end?

    To commemorate the retirement of three legendary forces inside the clubhouse, we take a look at the Top 100 Major League Managers of All Time.

100. Yogi Berra (1964-1985)

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    Total Seasons: Seven

    Record: 484-444 (.522)

    Teams: New York Yankees, New York Mets, New York Yankees

    Highlights: 1 AL Pennant, 1 NL Pennant

    You know, Yogi's a neat guy, one of the greatest catchers of all time, and a hilarious caricature of a ballplayer.

    But it sure is difficult to find quotes that talk about what a great manager he was.

99. Birdie Tebbetts (1954-1966)

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    Total Seasons: 11

    Record: 748-705 (.515)

    Teams: Cincinnati Reds, Milwaukee Braves, Cleveland Indians

    Highlights: 4 winning seasons

    A venerable old sage, Birdie Tebbetts was well liked and well respected around baseball. He was never given much to work with, but he didn't do much with it, either.

98. Joe Girardi (2006-2010)

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    NEW YORK - OCTOBER 18:  Manager Joe Girardi of the New York Yankees speaks during his pregame press conference against the Texas Rangers prior to Game Three of the ALCS during the 2010 MLB Playoffs at Yankee Stadium on October 18, 2010 in New York, New Yo
    Andrew Burton/Getty Images

    Total Seasons: Four

    Record: 365-283 (.563)

    Teams: Florida Marlins, New York Yankees

    Highlights: 1 Pennant, 1 World Series title

    Obviously, the jury is still out on this guy. Let's see how the 2010 postseason treats him. He should move up from this spot quite rapidly over the next five years or so.

97. Rogers Hornsby (1925-1953)

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    Total Seasons: 14

    Record: 701-812 (.463)

    Teams: St. Louis Cardinals, New York Giants, Boston Braves, Chicago Cubs, St. Louis Browns, Cincinnati Reds

    Highlights: 1 Pennants, 1 World Series title

    What kind of manager was Rogers Hornsby?

    Let's ask Jimmy Dugan:

96. Herman Franks (1965-1979)

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    Total Seasons: Seven

    Record: 605-521 (.537)

    Teams: San Francisco Giants, Chicago Cubs

    Highlights: 5 winning seasons

    Herman Franks managed the San Francisco Giants to four straight second-place finishes from 1965-1968, then was out of baseball for nearly 10 years before being brought on by the Cubs in 1977.

    By the time he spent three years with the Cubs, he was ready for Social Security.

95. Larry Dierker (1997-2001)

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    Total Seasons: Five

    Record: 435-348 (.556)

    Teams: Houston Astros

    Highlights: Four division titles

    Someday someone will have to explain to me how Larry Dierker won four division titles in five years with the Houston Astros and never sniffed another managerial position after 2001 at the age of 54.

94. Patsy Tebeau (1890-1900)

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    Total Seasons: 11

    Record: 726-583 (.555)

    Teams: Cleveland Infants (PL), Cleveland Spiders (NL), St. Louis Perfectos/Cardinals

    Highlights: 1 First place Finish

    Riddle me this, Tebeau: how does a manager whose team finishes higher than third just three times in 14 years finish 143 games over .500 for his career?


93. Don Zimmer (1972-1991)

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    Total Seasons: 13

    Record: 885-858 (.508)

    Teams: San Diego Padres, Boston Red Sox, Texas Rangers, Chicago Cubs

    Highlights: 1989 NL East Division winner

    The iconic image of Don Zimmer is not of Zim in any of his managerial uniforms, but rather of Zim in his role as the bench coach of the New York Yankees.

    (Actually, the lasting image in my mind is of Pedro Martinez grabbing Zimmer by the head and throwing him to the ground like he was on fire.)

    Zimmer actually had some success with the perpetually helpless Boston Red Sox and Chicago Cubs. Zim was essentially the Grady Little of the 1970s, leading the Sox to 90-plus wins three years in a row from 1977 to 1979, and missing the playoffs by 2.5 games in 1977 and by the length of a Bucky Dent home run in 1978.

    In 1989, he led the Cubs to a very rare playoff appearance.

92. Ed Barrow (1903-1920)

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    Total Seasons: Five

    Record: 310-320 (.492)

    Teams: Detroit Tigers, Boston Red Sox

    Highlights: 1 Pennant, 1 World Series title

    The Curse of the Bambino could just as well be called the Curse of Ed Barrow. After managing the Boston Red Sox to the 1918 World Series title, Barrow left the Red Sox when owner Harry Frazee started wildly selling assets and players.

    Barrow joined the Yankees and laid the foundation for the scouting, player signing, player development, and player theft that have become the calling card of the Yankees franchise for the last 90 years.

    Barrow is credited with discovering Lou Gehrig, Joe DiMaggio and perhaps even Honus Wagner.

91. Sam Mele (1961-1967)

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    Total Seasons: Seven

    Record: 524-436 (.546)

    Teams: Minnesota Twins

    Highlights: 1 AL Pennant

    Sam Mele had a rather good run in Minnesota in the 1960s, topping 89 wins four times in seven years and winning the 1965 AL Pennant.

90. Mike Hargrove (1991-2007)

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    Total Seasons: 16

    Record: 1188-1173 (.503)

    Teams: Cleveland Indians, Baltimore Orioles, Seattle Mariners

    Highlights: 5 Division titles, 2 Pennants

    Mike Hargrove enjoyed an unprecedented run of success with a Cleveland Indians team loaded with talent, but the patience of the front office wore thin after his third early exit in four years in 1999, and Hargrove was fired after winning 97 games.

    Hargrove never recaptured the magic in Baltimore or Seattle, and may now be most well known for retiring just under halfway into the season with the Mariners 12 games over .500 at 45-33.

89. Bill Rigney (1956-1976)

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    Total Seasons: 18

    Record: 1239-1321 (.484)

    Teams: New York/San Francisco Giants, Los Angeles/California Angels, Minnesota Twins

    Highlights: 1 Division title

    A solid manager who won a division title with the Twins in 1970, whose teams were rarely terrible, and who never really did anything of distinction.

88. Walter Johnson (1929-1935)

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    Total Seasons: Seven

    Record: 529-432 (.550)

    Teams: Washington Senators, Cleveland Indians

    Highlights: Three straight 90-win seasons

    From 1930-1932, the Washington Senators won 90 or more games three years in a row for the first time, under Walter Johnson.

    The next manager in franchise history to accomplish that feat would be Ron Gardenhire (Twins).

87. Buck Rodgers (1980-1994)

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    Total Seasons: 13

    Record: 784-774 (.503)

    Teams: Milwaukee Brewers, Montreal Expos, California Angels

    Buck Rodgers had a very talented 1985 Montreal Expos team that featured Bryn Smith, Bill Gullickson, and Joe Hesketh, plus a young-and-good looking Floyd Youmans, in the starting rotation, along with Gary Lucas, Tim Burke and Jeff Reardon in the bullpen.

    The offense featured Andre Dawson, Tim Raines, Hubie Brooks, Tim Wallach and a young Andres Galarraga.

    The 1985 Expos finished seven games over .500 and looked to be full of promise. In two years, the pitching fell apart, Dawson was winning the NL MVP in Chicago, and the Expos would be a mess for years to come.

    And that was as close to franchise success as Buck Rodgers would come in his managerial career.

86. Art Howe (1989-2004)

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    Total Seasons: 14

    Record: 1129-1137 (.498)

    Teams: Houston Astros, Oakland Athletics, New York Mets

    Highlights: 2 Division titles, 1 Wild Card

    Art Howe was the manager of the Oakland A's during the height of the Moneyball phenomenon. He capitalized on that success with a big-money contract in New York with the Mets, and lasted two seasons.

85. Phil Garner (1992-2007)

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    Total Seasons: 15

    Record: 985-1054 (.483)

    Teams: Milwaukee Brewers, Detroit Tigers, Houston Astros

    Highlights: 1 NL Pennant

    Phil Garner was handed lots of lemons during his managerial career, taking over Milwaukee just when big-market vs. small-market was beginning to matter, taking over the Detroit Tigers at a time when their farm system had bottomed out, and taking over an aging Astros team that he managed to squeak into the World Series in 2005 after a seven-game NLCS loss to the Cardinals in 2004.

84. Danny Ozark (1973-1984)

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    Total Seasons: Eight

    Record: 618-542 (.533)

    Teams: Philadelphia Phillies, San Francisco Giants

    Highlights: 3 Division titles

    The Andy Reid of baseball in the 1970s, Danny Ozark got fired in 1979 after winning three straight division titles, including consecutive years of 101 wins, but failing to get past the Los Angeles Dodgers in the NLCS either year.

    The year after the Phillies fired Ozark, they won the first World Series in franchise history.

83. Lou Boudreau (1942-1960)

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    Total Seasons: 16

    Record: 1162-1224 (.487)

    Teams: Cleveland Indians, Boston Red Sox, Kansas City Athletics, Chicago Cubs

    Highlights: 1 AL Pennant, 1 World Series

    Appointed player/manager of the Cleveland Indians at the young age of 24, in 1948 Lou Boudreau became one of only two men to coax a World Series title out of the Cleveland Indians in the 110 years of their existence, the other being Tris Speaker.

82. Frankie Frisch (1933-1951)

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    Total Seasons: 16

    Record: 1138-1078 (.514)

    Teams: St. Louis Cardinals, Pittsburgh Pirates, Chicago Cubs

    Highlights: 1 NL Pennant, 1 World Series title

    Frankie Frisch was a Hall of Fame second baseman who also served as player/manager of the mighty St. Louis Cardinals in the mid-1930s.

    After his playing career, he enjoyed some solid years managing the Pittsburgh Pirates, and then some not-so-solid years with the Chicago Cubs.

81. Jimmy Dykes (1934-1961)

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    Total Seasons: 21

    Record: 1406-1541 (.477)

    Teams: Chicago White Sox, Philadelphia Athletics, Baltimore Orioles, Cincinnati Redlegs, Detroit Tigers, Cleveland Indians

    Highlights: Winning 80 games a lot.

    Dykes must have been a freaking charismatic dude, because he lasted in Major League Baseball for 21 seasons without ever finishing higher than third place in any season. 

80. Roger Craig (1978-1992)

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    Total Seasons: 10

    Record: 738-737 (.500)

    Teams: San Diego Padres, San Francisco Giants

    Highlights: 1 NL Pennant

    In 1989, my favorite football team's nemesis was the San Francisco 49ers, which featured a running back named Roger Craig, while my favorite baseball team played the San Francisco Giants, who were managed by Roger Craig, in the playoffs.

    Talk about two weird guys to have the same name in the same city; they could not have been less similar. It would be like Stephen Jackson and Tony La Russa having the same name.

79. Clark Griffith (1901-1920)

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    Total Seasons: 20

    Record: 1491-1367 (.522)

    Teams: Chicago White Sox, New York Highlanders (Yankees), Cincinnati Reds, Washington Senators

    Highlights: 1 Pennant

    Clark Griffith guided the Chicago White Sox to the first-ever American League pennant in 1901, and then that was it. He won 90 or more games four times without ever getting back to the playoffs.

    Nevertheless, Griffith became the patron saint of the Washington Senators, as he became the controlling interest owner and the Senators played in a stadium bearing his name.  

    When he died in 1955, the Senators' days in Washington were numbered.

78. Joe Cronin (1933-1947)

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    Total Seasons: 15

    Record: 1236-1055 (.540)

    Teams: Washington Senators, Boston Red Sox

    Highlights: 2 AL Pennants

    Joe Cronin spent all but one season as a player/manager, and given that he was one of the all-time greatest shortstops, I'd say he had an advantage having himself as a player.

    He also had a pretty amazing lineup in addition to himself; during his time with the Red Sox he had Jimmie Foxx, Lefty Grove, Ted Williams, Bobby Doerr, and Dom DiMaggio, amongst others.

77. John McNamara (1969-1996)

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    Total Seasons: 19

    Record: 1160-1233 (.485)

    Teams: Oakland A's, San Diego Padres, Cincinnati Reds, California Angels, Boston Red Sox, Cleveland Indians, California Angels

    Highlights: 1 AL Pennant

    McNamara managed the Oakland A's on the precipice of three straight World Series titles, in the aftermath of the Big Red Machine, and the Boston Red Sox in the bottom of the 10th of Game 6 of the World Series when he opted not to take Bill Buckner out as a defensive substitution.

    That's just what you call bad luck.

76. Tris Speaker (1919-1926)

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    Total Seasons: Eight

    Record: 617-520 (.543)

    Teams: Cleveland Indians

    Highlights: 1920 World Series champion

    I've already alluded to this, but here's my problem with guys like Tris Speaker, who were only managers in the role of the player/manager:

    Having good players is one of the best ways to become a great manager. When you have a great player who is also the team's manager, then guys like Speaker benefit as managers from having guys like Speaker as a player.

    I don't know why, but I have a problem giving a guy credit for having managed a team that was good because he played on it. Maybe that's wrong.

    Nevertheless, Speaker led the Indians to the World Series in an era dominated by the Red Sox and White Sox before 1920 and the Yankees after 1920. Speaker's team was the only one to crack the scheme, if only for a year.

75. Cap Anson (1875-1898)

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    Total Seasons: 21

    Record: 1296-947 (.578)

    Teams: Philadelphia Athletics (National Association), Chicago White Stockings/Colts, New York Giants

    Highlights: 5 NL Pennants

    In the 19th Century, Cap Anson was the Chicago Cubs (then known as the White Stockings and the Colts). He was a larger-than-life figure who played major league baseball from the age of 19 to the age of 45 and took over as a player/manager at the age of 27 years old.

    He was also a big fat racist who, unlike so many players who simply accepted bigotry, was actually one of the people who was actually responsible for racial segregation in baseball.

    Quite a contribution he made to the game, right?

74. Fielder Jones (1904-1918)

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    Total Seasons: 10

    Record: 683-582 (.540)

    Teams: Chicago White Sox, St. Louis Terriers (FL), St. Louis Browns

    Highlights: 1 Pennant, 1 World Series title

    The player/manager of one of the greatest Chicago White Sox teams of all time, Fielder Jones never suffered a losing season until his last two.

73. Bobby Valentine (1985-2002)

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    Total Seasons: 15

    Record: 1117-1072 (.524)

    Teams: Texas Rangers, New York Mets

    Highlights: 2000 NL Pennant

    Was Bobby Valentine a good manager? Sure; you don't get to 1,100 wins and an NL Pennant without being a good manager.  But Valentine also seemed to take his talent where he found it.

    His Texas Rangers teams had Ivan Rodriguez, Julio Franco, Rafael Palmeiro, Juan Gonzalez, Ruben Sierra, Kevin Brown, Nolan Ryan, Bobby Witt, Oil Can Boyd, Kenny Rogers, Jeff Russell, and Rich Gossage and couldn't win more than 85 games in a season.

    His loaded New York Mets teams capsized in consecutive years in the playoffs (though they did reach the Series in 2000).

    And one can't help but to notice that it has been nine seasons since any major league team has asked him to serve as their manager.

72. Bill Terry (1932-1941)

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    Total Seasons: 10

    Record: 823-661 (.555)

    Teams: New York Giants

    Highlights: 3 Pennants, 1 World Series title

    Bill Terry was a much better manager when he had Bill Terry on his roster than he was when he did not.

71. Joe Altobelli (1977-1991)

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    Total Seasons: Seven

    Record: 437-407 (.518)

    Teams: San Francisco Giants, Baltimore Orioles, Chicago Cubs

    Highlights: 1 Pennant, 1 World Series title

    Was Joe Altobelli's World Series title with the 1983 Baltimore Orioles, in his first year replacing Earl Weaver, a case of right place at the right time?


    But the Orioles hadn't won a World Series in the previous 12 seasons under Weaver, so perhaps Altobelli brought something to the table.

70. Chuck Tanner (1970-1988)

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    Total Seasons: 19

    Record: 1352-1381 (.495)

    Teams: Chicago White Sox, Oakland A's, Pittsburgh Pirates, Atlanta Braves

    Highlights: 1 Pennant, 1 World Series title

    Chuck Tanner's teams were generally successful, as he enjoyed multiple winning seasons in Chicago, Oakland, and Pittsburgh. He won a World Series with the "We Are Family" Pirates in 1979, the last title Pittsburgh has enjoyed.  

    He stayed a couple of years too long in Pittsburgh, then enjoyed just over two lackluster years with a lackluster Atlanta Braves team.

69. Jim Fregosi (1978-2000)

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    Total Seasons: 15

    Record: 1028-1095 (.484)

    Teams: California Angels, Chicago White Sox, Philadelphia Phillies, Toronto Blue Jays

    Highlights: 1 NL Pennant

    Jim Fregosi had the unfortunate honor of being the manager of the California Angels when Nolan Ryan left town, being the manager of the Chicago White Sox at any point between 1919 and 2005, being the manager of the Philadelphia Phillies in the bottom of the ninth of Game 6 of the 1993 World Series, and being the manager of the Toronto Blue Jays after Roger Clemens left town but before Roy Halladay emerged.

    In short, he spent his career on the cusp of something great he'd be remembered for without ever getting there.

68. Eddie Dyer (1946-1950)

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    Total Seasons: Five

    Record: 446-325 (.578)

    Teams: St. Louis Cardinals

    Highlights: 1 Pennant, 1 World Series title

    A very brief, albeit successful, career, Dyer won the World Series in his first year with the Cardinals, in 1946, and then lasted four more seasons before moving on to become a successful Houston-area businessman.

67. Fred Haney (1939-1959)

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    Total Seasons: 10

    Record: 629-757 (.454)

    Teams: St. Louis Browns, Pittsburgh Pirates, Milwaukee Braves

    Highlights: 1957 World Series champions; 1958 NL Pennant

    While the Braves were in Milwaukee, from 1953 to 1965, they featured Hank Aaron, Eddie Mathews, and Warren Spahn, three of the all time greats. Yet only one man could harness the talent of the Milwaukee Braves and carry them to the World Series, and that man was Fred Haney.

    He did it twice in his three years with the team, and came within a best two-out-of-three tiebreaker loss to the Dodgers of going back a third time.

66. Johnny Oates (1991-2001)

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    Total Seasons: 11

    Record: 797-746 (.517)

    Teams: Baltimore Orioles, Texas Rangers

    Highlights: 3 Division titles

    Johnny Oates is one of those puzzling guys: easily the most successful manager in Texas Rangers history, suddenly at the age of 55 he was unemployable. Go figure.

    He died tragically of a brain tumor in 2004, but could have been managing right until the end.

65. Bill Virdon (1972-1984)

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    Total Seasons: 13

    Record: 995-921 (.519)

    Teams: Pittsburgh Pirates, New York Yankees, Houston Astros, Montreal Expos

    Highlights: 1972 NL East Division winner; 1980, 1981 NL West Division winner

    Bill Virdon guided the Astros to their third winning season in 1979, and then took the Astros to their first two playoff appearances in 1980 and 1981.

    He is the Astros' all-time leader in games, wins and losses.

64. Gene Mauch (1960-1987)

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    Total Seasons: 26

    Record: 1902-2037 (.483)

    Teams: Philadelphia Phillies, Montreal Expos, Minnesota Twins, California Angels (twice)

    Highlights: 1982, 1986 division titles

    Gene Mauch was, on balance, a very good manager who had a long and relatively successful career. With the Phillies in the 1960s, the Expos and Twins in the 1970s, and the Angels in the 1980s, Mauch exceeded very low expectations and brought his teams to the precipice of success.

    At the same time, some of the worst blunders in baseball history occurred under his watch, including two of the longest losing streaks in baseball history (23 in a row by the 1961 Phillies; 20 in a row by the 1969 Expos).

    It was Mauch's 1964 Phillies who were up 6.5 games with 12 games to play, and lost 10 of their last 12 when Mauch decided to start just two different starting pitchers the rest of the way.

    Mauch's 1973 Montreal Expos, in just their fifth season, were half a game out of the NL East lead on September 16th but ended up finishing in fourth place after losing nine of 10 in a crucial stretch.

    Mauch's 1982 California Angels were up 2-0 in the best-of-five ALCS before being swept out of the playoffs when Mauch decided to run Tommy John and Bruce Kison on short rest.

    And in 1986, Mauch's second-to-last season, the Angels were up 3-1 on the Boston Red Sox in the best-of-seven ALCS, one pitch away from the World Series when Donnie Moore gave up a home run to Dave Henderson to blow Game 5, from which the Angels never recovered.

63. Hank Bauer (1961-1969)

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    Total Seasons: Eight

    Record: 594-544 (.522)

    Teams: Kansas City Athletics, Baltimore Orioles, Oakland Athletics

    Highlights: 1966 World Series champion

    Hank Bauer rode Frank Robinson and the 1966 Baltimore Orioles to the World Series championship, and then failed to live up to the new standard he'd set in the subsequent years.

    In 1968, Bauer was fired from a 43-37 Orioles team that went on to become one of the great 20th Century teams starting in 1969, and then got fired from the Oakland Athletics after one year in 1969 two years before the A's would win three straight World Series.

62. Jimmy Collins (1901-1906)

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    Total Seasons: Six

    Record: 455-376 (.548)

    Teams: Boston Americans (Red Sox)

    Highlights: 2 Pennants, 1 World Series title

    The player/manager for the successful Boston Americans teams from 1901, the dawn of the AL, through 1905. Collins' Americans won the first World Series, as we know it today, in 1903.

61. Buck Showalter (1992-2010)

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    ST. PETERSBURG, FL - SEPTEMBER 29:  Manager Buck Showalter of the Baltimore Orioles watches his team against the Tampa Bay Rays during the game at Tropicana Field on September 29, 2010 in St. Petersburg, Florida.  (Photo by J. Meric/Getty Images)
    J. Meric/Getty Images

    New York Yankees (1992-1995): 313-268, 1 Division title, 1 Wild Card

    Arizona Diamondbacks (1998-2000): 250-236, 1 Division title

    Texas Rangers (2003-2006): 319-329

    Baltimore Orioles (2010-present): 34-23

    Buck Showalter has had in incredibly interesting career. He took over the New York Yankees at a time when they hadn't been to the playoffs in 11 years, which for the Yankees is like a century.

    Showalter led the Yankees back to respectability; they were in first place when the player strike ended the 1994 season, and in 1995 they won the wild card to go to the postseason for the first time since 1981.

    Showalter was fired after the 1995 season, and in 1996 the Yankees won the World Series.

    Buck joined the Arizona Diamondbacks in 1996, two years before they would field a team, and led the D'Backs to a 1999 NL West title before falling to third place in 2000.

    Showalter was fired after the 2000 season, and in 2001 the Diamondbacks won the World Series.

    Currently with the Orioles, Showalter has been all the talk as Baltimore posted the second-best record in the American League after he took over.

60. Paul Richards (1951-1976)

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    Total Seasons: 12

    Record: 923-901 (.506)

    Teams: Chicago White Sox, Baltimore Orioles

    Highlights: Seven winning seasons

    Paul Richards was more of a player development guy than a manager, and was credited with all sorts of achievements, like signing Jimmy Wynn, Joe Morgan, Don Wilson, and Rusty Staub for the Astros, signing Brooks Robinson and Mark Belanger for the Orioles, developing Sherm Lollar into a great catcher, and designing an oversized mitt for catching a knuckleball.

    He was not, however, credited with significant on-field success.

59. Jimy Williams (1986-2004)

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    Total Seasons: 12

    Record: 910-790 (.535)

    Teams: Toronto Blue Jays, Boston Red Sox, Houston Astros

    Highlights: 1998 Wild Card, 1999 Wild Card

    Jimy Williams managed with an incredibly high level of difficulty, having managed two teams in the AL East that weren't the Yankees, and then managing the Houston Astros in a loaded NL Central.

    His .535 winning percentage over 12 years is a testament to how well he managed the feat.

    On the other hand, Williams was twice replaced mid-season by a manager who then led the team into the playoffs:

    In 1989, Cito Gaston took over for Williams when the Toronto Blue Jays were 12-23, and they went on to win the AL East.

    In 2004, Phil Garner took over for Williams when the Houston Astros were 44-44, and the 'Stros went on to win the NL Wild Card.

    Also, both Gaston and Garner would lead those teams to the World Series in subsequent seasons.

58. Mayo Smith (1955-1970)

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    Total Seasons: Nine

    Record: 662-612 (.520)

    Teams: Philadelphia Phillies, Cincinnati Reds, Detroit Tigers

    Highlights: 1968 World Series champion

    Mayo Smith's career as a manager, particularly with the Detroit Tigers, was marked by fate, chance, and luck.

    In 1967, in Smith's first season with the Detroit Tigers, he took a team that had finished second just once since 1950 and waged a three-way war with the Minnesota Twins and the eventual AL Champion Boston Red Sox that ended with the Twins and Tigers one game behind the Sox.

    In 1968, Smith rode the magical season of Denny McLain all the way to the World Series, and then took a huge gamble when he used his fourth outfielder at shortstop in order to maximize his offensive potential. The gamble worked, and the Tigers won the 1968 Series.

    In 1969, the Tigers finished in second place behind the stalwart Baltimore Orioles. They finished in fourth the following season and Smith called it a career.

57. George Stallings (1897-1920)

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    Total Seasons: 13

    Record: 879-898 (.495)

    Teams: Philadelphia Phillies, Detroit Tigers, New York Highlanders (Yankees), Boston Braves

    Highlights: 2 Pennants, 1 World Series title

    A decent manager with a limited record who caught lightning in a bottle one year and won a World Series with the Braves in a league diluted by the rival Federal League.

56. Danny Murtaugh (1957-1976)

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    Total Seasons: 15

    Record: 1115-950 (.540)

    Teams: Pittsburgh Pirates

    Highlights: 2 Pennants, 2 World Series titles

    Danny Murtaugh was a franchise guy who occupied a variety of roles with the Pittsburgh Pirates in the 1950s, 1960s, and 1970s.

    For a variety of reasons including health issues, he was in and out of the manager's job four times, winning two World Series championships and winning the division five times.

    Murtaugh died just three months after the completion of his final season.

55. Chuck Dressen (1934-1966)

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    Total Seasons: 16

    Record: 1008-973 (.509)

    Teams: Cincinnati Reds, Brooklyn Dodgers, Washington Senators, Milwaukee Braves, Detroit Tigers

    Highlights: 2 NL Pennants

    Chuck Dressen was a baseball legend in his own time, but also had an inconvenient managerial career.

    He led the Reds immediately prior to Bill McKechnie's tenure there, he led the Dodgers immediately prior to Walter Alston's 22-year career there, led the Braves immediately after Fred Haney's successful term in Milwaukee, and preceded by two seasons Mayo Smith's World Series title with the 1968 Detroit Tigers.

54. Gil Hodges (1963-1971)

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    Total Seasons: Nine

    Record: 660-753 (.467)

    Teams: Washington Senators (II), New York Mets

    Highlights: 1969 World Series champion

    Gil Hodges is the poster child for the dilemma that arises when trying to rate good managers of bad teams. Hodges finished 120 games under .500 with an expansion Washington Senators team that was bad for three years before he got there and for six years after he left.

    Then, with the New York Mets, Hodges had one season under .500 before guiding the Miracle Mets to one of the most stunning upsets in baseball history, over the Baltimore Orioles in the 1969 World Series.

    Hodges enjoyed two more winning seasons before suffering a fatal heart attack just two days shy of his 48th birthday in spring training in 1972.

    Hodges was a very good manager with very meager teams, and his overall talent transcends his overall record.

53. Bill Carrigan (1913-1929)

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    Total Seasons: Seven

    Record: 489-500 (.494)

    Teams: Boston Red Sox

    Highlights: 2 Pennants, 2 World Series titles

    Two Boston Red Sox managers have won two World Series titles. One is Terry Francona, and the other is Bill Carrigan.

52. Jack McKeon (1973-2005)

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    Total Seasons: 15

    Record: 1011-940 (.518)

    Teams: Kansas City Royals, Oakland A's, San Diego Padres, Cincinnati Reds, Florida Marlins

    Highlights: 1 Pennant, 1 World Series title

    Jack McKeon spent a 30-year career in Major League Baseball with a reputation for being prickly, hot-headed, and curmudgeonly.

    Then, at the age of 72, McKeon comes out of retirement to guide the Florida Marlins to the 2003 World Series title, and McKeon becomes the embodiment of Lou Brown from Major League.

51. Ozzie Guillen (2004-2010)

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    CHICAGO - AUGUST 29: Manager Ozzie Guillen #13 (L) and Mark Buehrle #56 of the Chicago White Sox enjoy a ceremony retiring former player Frank Thomas' number 35 before a game against the New York Yankees at U.S. Cellular Field on August 29, 2010 in Chicag
    Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

    Total Seasons: Seven

    Record: 600-535 (.529)

    Teams: Chicago White Sox

    Highlights: 1 Pennant, 1 World Series title

    Obnoxious, full of himself, constantly sticks his foot in his mouth, and, in my opinion, has a tendency to blame his players when things go poorly and take credit when things go well.

    Still, two playoff appearances, five winning records and a World Series title in seven seasons: you can't argue with results.

50. Dallas Green (1978-1996)

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    Total Seasons: Nine

    Record: 454-478 (.487)

    Teams: Philadelphia Phillies, New York Yankees, New York Mets

    Highlights: 1980 World Series champion

    Dallas Green's contributions to baseball came not so much in the won-loss column but rather in bringing winning baseball to teams who had no history of winning.

    Green took over the Philadelphia Phillies for Danny Ozark in 1979, and in 1980, he led the Philadelphia Phillies to the first World Series title in team history.

    From there he moved onto the Chicago Cubs, where working in the front office he acquired Gary Mathews, Rick Sutcliffe, Dennis Eckersley, Ryne Sandberg, Bob Dernier, and Andre Dawson, while also developing Rafael Palmeiro, Jamie Moyer, Greg Maddux, Shawon Dunston, and Mark Grace.

    It was Green's boldness and bluntness that also coerced the City of Chicago into allowing Wrigley Field to have lights.

49. Red Schoendienst (1965-1990)

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    Total Seasons: 19

    Record: 1041-955 (.522)

    Teams: St. Louis Cardinals

    Highlights: 2 Pennants, 1 World Series title

    The Minnie Minoso of major league managers, Schoendienst earned his stripes with the Cardinals of the 1960s and 1970s, going to two World Series and winning one of them.

    He left the team after the 1976 season, briefly returning in 1980 for 37 games and then again in 1990 for 24 games.

    Schoendienst is one of the few players who can say he managed in four different decades.

48. Alvin Dark (1961-1977)

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    Total Seasons: 13

    Record: 994-954 (.510)

    Teams: San Francisco Giants, Kansas City Athletics, Cleveland Indians, Oakland Athletics, San Diego Padres

    Highlights: 2 Pennants, 1 World Series title

    Won two pennants with two different teams 12 years apart, though to be fair the Oakland A's were going to win that pennant regardless of whom their manager was.

    Only Dick Williams' prickly personality even caused that job, at the helm of two-time reigning World Champions, even to be open in the first place.

47. Dick Howser (1978-1986)

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    Total Seasons: Eight

    Record: 507-425 (.544)

    Teams: New York Yankees, Kansas City Royals

    Highlights: 1985 World Series champion

    Dick Howser is a big "what could've been" manager. He managed the New York Yankees to 103 wins in 1980, but got swept out of the playoffs by the Kansas City Royals and subsequently fired by the Yankees' sociopath owner.

    Howser then got picked up by the Royals the following year and proceeded to guide Kansas City to consecutive finishes of first, second, second, first, and first, and led them to the 1985 World Series championship.

    Howser career ended with a tragic turn. During the 1986 All-Star Game, broadcasters noticed that he was messing up signals when he changed pitchers, and it was shortly thereafter that Howser was diagnosed with a brain tumor. Howser died the following year.

    If not for having bad luck, Dick Howser might today be a Hall of Fame manager.

46. Cito Gaston (1989-2010)

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    TORONTO, ON - SEPTEMBER 29: Cito Gaston tips his hat during a pre-game ceremony for retiring Manager Cito Gaston of the Toronto Blue Jays as they play the New York Yankees during a MLB game at the Rogers Centre September 29, 2010 in Toronto, Ontario, Cana
    Abelimages/Getty Images

    Total Seasons: 12

    Record: 894-837 (.516)

    Teams: Toronto Blue Jays

    Highlights: 2 Pennants, 2 World Series titles

    Cito Gaston is the Joe Gibbs of Major League Baseball. He reigned over the heyday of the Toronto Blue jays, winning four division titles and back-to-back World Series titles in 1992 and 1993. He was fired in 1997, and then when the Blue Jays suffered through a decade of mediocrity, he was brought back in 2008.

    The Blue Jays have been a good team since Cito's return, but their prospects in a stacked AL East look dim with or without the most successful manager in team history.

45. Charlie Comiskey (1883-1894)

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    Total Seasons: 12

    Record: 840-541 (.608)

    Teams: St. Louis Browns (AA), Chicago Pirates (PL), Cincinnati Reds

    Highlights: Four American Association Pennants, One 19th Century World Series champion

    Generally speaking I am no fan of the player/managers who benefited from having themselves as players.

    There was no benefit to Comiskey the manager of having Comiskey the player on his team, however, as he was the original light-hitting first baseman.

    Comiskey would go on to become the cheapskate owner of the Chicago White Sox who provoked the Black Sox scandal.

44. Fred Clarke (1897-1915)

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    Total Seasons: 19

    Record: 1602-1181 (.576)

    Teams: Louisville Colonels, Pittsburgh Pirates

    Highlights: 4 Pennants, 1 World Series title

    Fred Clarke was the manager of the Pittsburgh Pirates during a glorious time in their history when they featured Honus Wagner, Jack Chesbro, Deacon Phillippe, Sam Leever, Tommy Leach, Ginger Beaumont, and...Fred Clarke.

    The talent-rich Pirates team came into being after the Louisville Colonels, a 19th Century NL team, folded, and the Colonels and Pirates essentially consolidated rosters. Kinda makes it seem like Clarke didn't have too tough a task with those Pirates.

43. Bruce Bochy (1995-2010)

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    PHILADELPHIA - OCTOBER 17:  Manager Bruce Bochy of the San Francisco Giants looks on during batting practice before taking on the Philadelphia Phillies in Game Two of the NLCS during the 2010 MLB Playoffs at Citizens Bank Park on October 17, 2010 in Phila
    Chris McGrath/Getty Images

    Total Seasons: 16

    Record: 1274-1300 (.495)

    Teams: San Diego Padres, San Francisco Giants

    Highlights: 1 Pennant

    One of the best managers in the game today, after Bruce Bochy spent 12 years in San Diego cobbling together four bargain-basement division titles, Bochy moved on to San Francisco where he has finally returned to the postseason in 2010.

    A World Series title could move Bochy up considerably.

42. Harry Wright (1871-1893)

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    Total Seasons: 23

    Record: 1225-885 (.581)

    Teams: Boston Red Stockings (NA), Boston Red Caps (NL), Providence Grays (NL), Philadelphia Quakers/Phillies

    Highlights: 4 National Association Pennants, 2 National League Pennants

    Harry Wright assembled, managed, and played center field for baseball's first fully professional team, the 1869 Cincinnati Red Stockings.

    He debuted as a manager in 1871, in the first year of professional baseball as we know it. When the National League was formed, he became the player/manager of the Boston Red Caps, a team now known as the Atlanta Braves.

    His career stretched 23 seasons, until 1893, making Wright the early standard-bearer for franchise managers.

41. Lou Piniella (1986-2010)

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    PHOENIX - JULY 05:  Manager Lou Piniella of the Chicago Cubs in the dugout during the Major League Baseball game against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field on July 5, 2010 in Phoenix, Arizona.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
    Christian Petersen/Getty Images

    Total Seasons: 23

    Record: 1835-1713 (.517)

    Teams: New York Yankees, Cincinnati Reds, Seattle Mariners, Tampa Bay Devil Rays, Chicago Cubs

    Highlights: 1 Pennant, 1 World Series title

    At his best, "Sweet Lou" delivered the Cincinnati Reds to a stunning upset of the Oakland A's in the 1990 World Series, and took the Seattle Mariners to a 116-win season after losing Alex Rodriguez, Ken Griffey Jr. and Randy Johnson.

    At the same time, Piniella inherited his Reds team, never took an absurdly talented Mariners team to the World Series in 10 years, didn't do a thing to turn around the Devil Rays, and failed to win a single playoff game in two trips to the playoffs with the Cubs.

    Sweet Lou was a very good manager, but Bobby Cox, Joe Torre, or Tony La Russa he was not.

40. Charlie Grimm (1932-1960)

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    Total Seasons: 19

    Record: 1287-1067 (.547)

    Teams: Chicago Cubs, Boston/Milwaukee Braves

    Highlights: 3 Pennants

    Here's a Charlie Grimm fun fact: Charlie Grimm and Frank Chance are the only two managers to ever lead the Chicago Cubs to multiple pennants.

    Grimm led the Cubs to the NL Pennant in 1932, 1935, and 1945, narrowly missing a fourth Pennant when he was replaced by the Cubs in favor of Gabby Harnett in 1938.

39. Ralph Houk (1961-1984)

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    Total Seasons: 20

    Record: 1618-1531 (.514)

    Teams: New York Yankees, Detroit Tigers, Boston Red Sox

    Highlights: 3 Pennants, 2 World Series titles

    From 1921 to 1964, the New York Yankees went to 29 World Series in 44 seasons, a truly shocking number. Ralph Houk served as the manager for three of the last four World Series teams, then took over as General Manager and oversaw the end of the near half-century Yankees dynasty.

    After three years as GM, Houk returned to the bench and went seven years without making the World Series, a Yankees record for a manager (no, really).

    In nine years with the Tigers and Red Sox, Houk's teams were underwhelming.

38. Wilbert Robinson (1902-1931)

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    Total Seasons: 19

    Record: 1399-1398 (.500)

    Teams: Baltimore Orioles I (AL), Brooklyn Robins (Dodgers)

    Highlights: 2 Pennants

    On the second to last day of his career as a manager, Wilbert Robinson's Brooklyn Robins beat the St. Louis Cardinals to bring his career record to an even 1398-1398.

    On the final day of the 1931 season, the Robins beat the New York Giants, and Robinson finished his career one game over .500.

37. Frank Robinson (1975-2006)

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    Total Seasons: 16

    Record: 1065-1176 (.475)

    Teams: Cleveland Indians, San Francisco Giants, Baltimore Orioles, Montreal Expos/Washington Nationals

    Highlights: First black manager in Major League Baseball history.

    It can be difficult to judge the managerial career of Frank Robinson without taking in some perspective. Robinson managed the Indians for three years and finished just three games under .500 during a period in which the Indians went 45 years between postseason appearances and finished with winning records seven times.

    He also had comparatively short stints with the Giants (three and a half years) and the Orioles (three and a half years) before becoming the manager of the Montreal Expos at a time when Major League Baseball owned the team collectively and pilfered the team's roster.

    When he left the now-Washington Nationals in 2006 at the age of 70, it was more of a reprieve than a termination.

36. Hughie Jennings (1907-1925)

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    Total Seasons: 16

    Record: 1184-995 (.543)

    Teams: Detroit Tigers, New York Giants

    Highlights: 3 Pennants

    Hughie Jennings won the AL Pennant in his first three years as the Detroit Tigers manager, then never got back to the postseason.

35. Felipe Alou (1992-2006)

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    Total Seasons: 14

    Record: 1033-1021 (.503)

    Teams: Montreal Expos, San Francisco Giants

    Highlights: Robbed of greatness in 1994.

    There are many tragedies to have come out of the 1994 players' strike. There was a potential assault on 61 home runs by Matt Williams and Ken Griffey Jr., and there was Tony Gwynn's potential crack at hitting .400, amongst many others.

    But what happened with the 1994 Montreal Expos, who were 34 games over .500 after 114 games when the strike broke out, has been a black mark on baseball. Felipe Alou's team featured Moises Alou, Marquis Grissom, and Larry Walker, with Rondell White in reserve.

    The infield featured a young-and-coming-into-his-own Cliff Floyd, a promising Wilfredo Cordero, and the inimitable Mike Lansing.

    The pitching staff had a shocking 120 ERA+ and featured a rotation of Ken Hill, Pedro Martinez, Jeff Fassero, and a surprisingly good Butch Henry, along with a shut-down bullpen of John Wetteland, Mel Rojas, Jeff Shaw, Tim Scott and Gil Heredia.

    That the 1994 Expos didn't get a crack at the World Series is an abomination, and may simply have killed baseball in Montreal.

34. Charlie Manuel (2000-2010)

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    PHILADELPHIA - OCTOBER 16:  Manager Charlie Manuel of the Philadelphia Phillies watches batting practice before taking on the San Francisco Giants in Game One of the NLCS during the 2010 MLB Playoffs at Citizens Bank Park on October 16, 2010 in Philadelph
    Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images

    Total Seasons: Nine

    Record: 764-618 (.553)

    Teams: Cleveland Indians, Philadelphia Phillies

    Highlights: 5 Division titles, 2 Pennants, 1 World Series title

    I have too much respect for a man I have ended up being on the wrong side of questioning too many times. So, I won't make any Forrest Gump or Rain Man jokes.

    That Charlie Manuel was 56 years old before someone made him a Major League manager seems, now, to be preposterous. Manuel has never finished a full season with a losing record in nine years.

33. Pat Moran (1915-1923)

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    Total Seasons: Nine 

    Record: 748-586 (.561)

    Teams: Philadelphia Phillies, Cincinnati Reds

    Highlights: 2 Pennants, 1 World Series title

    Pat Moran was a great manager with a tragically brief career. He debuted in 1915 and took the Philadelphia Phillies to the World Series for the first time.

    He finished second two times and sixth once before moving to the Cincinnati Reds, with whom he won a World Series in his first season.

    He guided the Reds to winning records in three of the next four years before dying at the age of 48 during spring training in 1924.

32. Ron Gardenhire (2002-2010)

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    NEW YORK - OCTOBER 09:  Manager Ron Gardenhire (L) #35 of the Minnesota Twins looks on from the dugout late in the game against the New York Yankees  during Game Three of the ALDS part of the 2010 MLB Playoffs at Yankee Stadium on October 9, 2010 in the B
    Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

    Total Seasons: Nine

    Record: 803-656 (.550)

    Teams: Minnesota Twins

    Highlights: Six AL Central division titles

    The Ron Gardenhire resume is still being written, but this much we know for sure: in 2002 Gardenhire took over a team that had been mentioned as a candidate for contraction by MLB Commissioner Bud Selig, and he has taken them to six division titles in nine years.

    Not bad.

31. Davey Johnson (1984-2000)

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    New York Mets (1984-1990): 595-417, 2 Division titles, 1 Pennant, 1 World Series title

    Cincinnati Reds (1993-1995): 204-172, 2 Division titles

    Baltimore Orioles (1996-1997): 186-138, 1 Wild Card, 1 Division title

    Los Angeles Dodgers (1999-2000): 163-161

    Maybe the most underrated manager of the last 50 years. Davey Johnson had a terrible run of luck that included being the manager for a fickle New York Mets ownership group, for a sociopath in Marge Schott and for an idiot in Peter Angelos.

    As a result, Johnson was fired after a winning season four times. 

30. Fred Hutchinson (1952-1964)

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    Total Seasons: 12

    Record: 830-827 (.501)

    Teams: Detroit Tigers, St. Louis Cardinals, Cincinnati Reds

    Highlights: 1 NL Pennant

    A generally successful manager who led the Cincinnati Reds to the World Series in 1961, and managed to win 830 games as a manager (69th all time) before his tragic death in 1964 at the age of 44.

29. Terry Francona (1997-2010)

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    NEW YORK - SEPTEMBER 26:  Manager Terry Francona #47 of the Boston Red Sox looks on prior to their game against the New York Yankees on September 26, 2010 at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx borough of New York City.  (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)
    Mike Stobe/Getty Images

    Total Seasons: 11

    Record: 939-843 (.527)

    Teams: Philadelphia Phillies, Boston Red Sox

    Highlights: 2 Pennants, 2 World Series titles

    A Boston Red Sox legend as a result of delivering not one but two World Series titles to a city that had gone so long without, and come so close so many times to, a championship.

    Francona's tenure in Philadelphia was far less successful, and it is worth noting that Francona has had some of the best players in baseball during his tenure in Boston.

    Nevertheless, many talented Red Sox teams came up short in October before Terry came to town, and so he deserves all the credit that he gets.

28. Tom Kelly (1986-2001)

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    Total Seasons: 15

    Record: 1140-1244 (.478)

    Teams: Minnesota Twins

    Highlights: 2 AL Pennants, 2 World Series titles

    For reasons unclear, Tom Kelly took over the Minnesota Twins at the age of 35, won two World Series titles by the age of 40, and retired 10 years later at the age of 50, never to return to managing again.

27. Steve O'Neill (1935-1954)

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    Total Seasons: 14

    Record: 1040-821 (.559)

    Teams: Cleveland Indians, Detroit Tigers, Boston Red Sox, Philadelphia Phillies

    Highlights: 1 Pennant, 1 World Series title

    Want an idea of how competitive baseball was in the 1930s, 1940s, and 1950s, before expansion?

    Steve O'Neill's teams finished higher in second place or higher just four times in 14 years, and yet O'Neill never once posted a losing record.

26. Al Lopez (1951-1969)

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    Total Seasons: 17

    Record: 1410-1004 (.584)

    Teams: Cleveland Indians, Chicago White Sox

    Highlights: 2 Pennants

    One of eight managers that finished his career 400 games over .500 (406). Al Lopez won AL Pennants with Cleveland in 1954 and the Chicago White Sox in 1959.

    With five second place finishes and one first place finish, Lopez has to be considered the greatest White Sox manager ever.

25. Frank Selee (1890-1905)

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    Total Seasons: 16

    Record: 1284-862 (.598)

    Teams: Boston Beaneaters (Braves), Chicago Cubs

    Highlights: 6 NL Pennants

    Frank Selee finished with a losing record just twice in his 16-year managerial career. Selee was responsible for signing and developing Joe Tinker, Johnny Evers, and Frank Chance into the greatest double-play combination of all time.

24. Dick Williams (1967-1988)

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    Total Seasons: 21

    Record: 1571-1451 (.520)

    Teams: Boston Red Sox, Oakland A's, California Angels, Montreal Expos, San Diego Padres, Seattle Mariners

    Highlights: 4 NL Pennants, 2 World Series titles

    Dick Williams won a pennant with the 1967 Red Sox, finished with a winning record every year in Boston, and got fired.

    He won three division titles and two World Series titles in Oakland and quit. He finished with a winning record in five years with Montreal before getting fired by the Expos despite being on the way to the playoffs.

    He finished with four winning seasons in San Diego before getting fired there before finishing his career without much to speak of in Seattle.

    Think his nickname might have been an appropriate one?

23. Ned Hanlon (1889-1907)

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    Total Seasons: 19

    Record: 1313-1164 (.530)

    Teams: Pittsburgh Pirates, Baltimore Orioles (NL), Brooklyn Superbas (Dodgers), Cincinnati Reds

    Highlights: 5 Pennants

    Ned Hanlon won five pennants with two different teams before the advent of the American League, then never really made it back after the AL debuted in 1901.

22. Dusty Baker (1993-2010)

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    CINCINNATI - OCTOBER 10: Dusty Baker the Manager of the Cincinnati Reds takes in batting practice before the start of  Game 3 of the NLDS against the Philadelphia Phillies  at Great American Ball Park on October 10, 2010 in Cincinnati, Ohio.  (Photo by An
    Andy Lyons/Getty Images

    Total Seasons: 17

    Record: 1405-1284 (.522)

    Teams: San Francisco Giants, Chicago Cubs, Cincinnati Reds

    Highlights: 5 division titles, 1 wild card, 1 NL pennant

    Dusty Baker has been the beneficiary of some of the game's greatest talents: Barry Bonds, Sammy Sosa, Jeff Kent, Kerry Wood, Mark Prior, Joey Votto, Aroldis Chapman, Scott Rolen, Edinson Volquez, Jay Bruce...

    But who hasn't?

    Baker has a reputation for blowing out arms (see the aforementioned), but it would appear now several seasons after the Wood/Prior debacle that we know even less now than we did then about how to preserve young pitchers.

    I think we need to cut Dusty some slack.

    And besides, Dusty is now 25th all time in wins by a manager, and next season he passes Miller Huggins, Jimmy Dykes, Al Lopez, and, with any luck, Earl Weaver.


21. Casey Stengel (1934-1965)

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    Brooklyn Dodgers (1934-1936): 208-251

    Boston Braves (1938-1943): 373-491

    New York Yankees (1949-1960): 1149-696, 10 Pennants, 7 World Series Titles

    New York Mets (1962-1965): 175-404

    From 1934 to 1965, Casey Stengel managed four teams, including the New York Yankees.

    During that period, the teams Stengel managed other than the Yankees went 756-1146 for a .397 winning percentage, never finishing better than fifth place.

    Also during that period, the New York Yankees went 1909-1197 (.615), won 12 pennants and nine World Series championships in 20 seasons without Casey Stengel.

    During his 12 years with the Yanks, they went 1149-696 (.623) and won 10 pennants and seven World Series titles.

    Now, which is more likely: Casey Stengel was a great manager who had horrible teams except when he was with the Yankees, or the New York Yankees were a great team that any manager could have won with?

    Look, Stengel could not have been a bad manager, and was probably very good. But let's not have an argument over whether he should be top 20 or anything like that.

20. Whitey Herzog (1973-1990)

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    COOPERSTOWN, NY - JULY 25:  2010 inductee Whitey Herzog poses for a photograph with his plaque at Clark Sports Center during the Baseball Hall of Fame induction ceremony on July 25, 20010 in Cooperstown, New York. Herzog served as manager for four teams a
    Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

    Texas Rangers (1973): 47-91

    California Angels (1974): 2-2

    Kansas City Royals (1975-1979): 410-304, 3 Division Titles

    St. Louis Cardinals (1980-1990): 822-728, 3 Division Titles, 3 Pennants, 1 World Series title

    Dorrel Norman Elvert Herzog was really a talent developer in manager's clothing. Herzog was the Director of Player Development for the New York Mets from 1967 to 1972, during which the Mets developed a nucleus of players that won two World Series in 1969 and 1973.

    In 1975, Herzog took over the Kansas City Royals and led them on one of the most successful stretches in their history, winning the AL West three straight years in between two second place finishes.

    Herzog took over as General Manager, and eventually as manager, of the St. Louis Cardinals in 1980. From 1980-1982, when he abdicated the role, Herzog traded for Ozzie Smith, Willie McGee, Joaquin Andujar, Bruce Sutter, and drafted Terry Pendleton, Vince Coleman, Todd Worrell, and Danny Cox.

    Unlike a lot of managers, Herzog built the team he took to the World Series.

19. Mike Scioscia (2000-2010)

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    OAKLAND, CA - SEPTEMBER 3:  Manager Mike Scioscia of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim looks on against the Oakland Athletics during a Major League Baseball game at the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum on September 3, 2010 in Oakland, California. (Photo by
    Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images

    Total Seasons: 10

    Record: 980-802 (.550)

    Teams: Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim

    Highlights: 5 Division titles, 1 Pennants, 1 World Series title

    You know how sometimes a family fortune gets handed down through the generations, but then there comes a time when the family suddenly lacks an heir, and so a trusted son-in-law or cousin has to take over?

    Mike Scioscia is the heir to the Walter Alston-Tommy Lasorda Dodgers' managers dynasty; it just so happens that the Dodgers have been a mess this decade, so Scioscia has had to take over the crosstown (or something) Angels.

    But he is a worthy heir.

18. Jim Leyland (1986-2010)

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    Total Seasons: 19

    Record: 1493-1518 (.496)

    Teams: Pittsburgh Pirates, Florida Marlins, Colorado Rockies, Detroit Tigers

    Highlights: 3 Division Titles, 2 Pennants, 1 World Series title

    Jim Leyland won a World Series with the 1997 Florida Marlins and took the Detroit Tigers to the World Series in 2006, but his finest team may have been the Pittsburgh Pirates, who went seven games in the NLCS twice against the Atlanta Braves but could not break through to the World Series.

    Leyland was the last person out of town in Pittsburgh after building a great team, and got stuck with the Florida Marlins after Wayne Huizenga sold all his players in 1998.

    Given a team or two that could, you know, re-sign all the talent they developed, Leyland would be a couple 'a hundred games over .500 for his career.

17. Tommy Lasorda (1976-1996)

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    COOPERSTOWN, NY - JULY 25:  Hall of Famer Tommy Lasorda attends the Baseball Hall of Fame induction ceremony at Clark Sports Center on July 25, 20010 in Cooperstown, New York.  (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
    Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

    Total Seasons: 21

    Record: 1599-1439 (.526)

    Teams: Los Angeles Dodgers

    Highlights: 5 Pennants, 3 World Series titles

    Tommy Lasorda had an amazing career, developed some of the finest players of all time, won 90 or more games in three different decades, and let Kirk Gibson bat with two outs in the bottom of the ninth in the World Series against the best closer in baseball with two bad knees because he had a hunch that Gibson would give him something to remember.

    That Lasorda managed nine different Rookies of the Year is ridiculous.

16. Frank Chance (1905-1923)

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    Total Seasons: 11

    Record: 946-648 (.593)

    Teams: Chicago Cubs

    Highlights: 4 Pennants, 2 World Series titles

    The legendary player/manager of the only great era in Chicago Cubs history, Chance led the Cubbies to four pennants in five years and two World Series titles, including their last.

    In 1908.

15. Leo Durocher (1939-1973)

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    Brooklyn Dodgers (1939-1946, 1948): 738-565, 1 Pennant

    New York Giants (1948-1955): 637-523, 2 Pennants, 1 World Series Title

    Chicago Cubs (1966-1972): 535-526

    Houston Astros (1972-1973): 98-95

    Durocher won a World Series with the Giants in 1954, but he just missed being the manager of one of the greatest teams of all time.

    Durocher managed the Brooklyn Dodgers for seven seasons, and then left after the 1948 season.

    The 1947 season, of course, marked the debut of Jackie Robinson; in 1948 Roy Campanella, Gil Hodges, Billy Cox, Carl Furillo, and Preacher Roe joined the team; in 1949 Don Newcombe and Duke Snider arrived and the Dodgers had a dynasty.

    But Leo Durocher missed it; he was across town with the New York Giants starting in 1948. Durocher arrived just in time for the departure of Walker Cooper, Johnny Mize, and Sid Gordon from a team that still had short-term memories of Mel Ott, Carl Hubbell, and Bill Terry.

    In the time Durocher was with the Giants, the Dodgers went to the World Series six times.

14. Billy Martin (1969-1988)

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    Total Seasons: 16

    Record: 1253-1013 (.553)

    Teams: Minnesota Twins, Detroit Tigers, Texas Rangers, New York Yankees, Oakland Athletics

    Highlights: 2 AL Pennants, 1 World Series title

    Billy Martin would easily be discreditable as a national joke if not for one undeniable fact: Martin won everywhere he went.

    In addition to winning records with the Yankees in six stints, Martin also won division titles with the 1969 Twins, the 1972 Tigers, and the the 1981 A's, while finishing second with the 1974 Texas Rangers, their highest finish from 1961 to 1977.

13. Billy Southworth (1929-1951)

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    Total Seasons: 13

    Record: 1770-1044 (.597)

    Teams: St. Louis Cardinals, Boston Braves

    Highlights: 4 Pennants, 2 World Series titles

    Billy Southworth was a strict disciplinarian who, when successful, led the St. Louis Cardinals of the 1940s to three straight World Series, the last NL team to accomplish this, and led the Boston Braves of "Spahn and Sain and pray for rain" fame to the World Series.

    In less successful times, he lost the loyalty of his players and got demoted to minor league manager. Nevertheless, Southworth's .597 winning percentage is the second highest of all time.

12. Miller Huggins (1913-1929)

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    Total Seasons: 17

    Record: 1413-1134 (.555)

    Teams: St. Louis Cardinals, New York Yankees

    Highlights: 6 Pennants, 3 World Series titles

    Miller Huggins took over as manager of the New York Yankees in 1918. In 1920, Babe Ruth was sold to the Yankees. In 1923, Lou Gehrig joined the Yankees.

    And that was baseball history.

11. Bucky Harris (1924-1956)

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    Total Seasons: 29

    Record: 2158-2219 (.493)

    Teams: Washington Senators (Thrice), Detroit Tigers (Twice), Boston Red Sox, Philadelphia Phillies, New York Yankees

    Highlights: 1924, 1947 World Series champs, 1925 AL Pennant

    It is hard to know what to do with Bucky Harris. In his first year as a player/manager, at age 27, he led the Washington Senators to the World Series title, and the following year he led them to the AL Pennant.

    But in Detroit, from 1929 to 1933, he had mediocre success, and the Tigers went to back-to-back World Series in the two years after he left.

    In his second stint with the Senators, from 1935 to 1942, he enjoyed exactly one winning season. He won a World Series with the Yankees in 1947, but he was fired after he finished third in 1948. The following year, the Yanks began a run of five straight championships.

    His third tenure with the Senators and his second with the Tigers were both forgettable, and then he retired.

10. Earl Weaver (1968-1986)

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    Total Seasons: 17

    Record: 1480-1060 (.583)

    Teams: Baltimore Orioles

    Highlights: 4 Pennants, 1 World Series title

    Earl Weaver was the manager of the Baltimore Orioles during their heyday, the period of time that has led to the Orioles now being known as "the Once Proud Baltimore Orioles."

    Weaver believed in living by the three-run home run, but it was amazing pitching that got Weaver to the top of the baseball world.

    Weaver's staffs, featuring Jim Palmer, Dave McNally, Mike Cuellar, Pat Dobson, Wayne Garland, Steve Stone, Mike Flanagan, and others, were the strength of his Orioles teams, but also benefited from one of the greatest defensive infields of all time.

    Weaver is one of eight managers all time to finish his career over 400 games above .500, and one of only three to do it while managing less than 20 seasons.

9. Walter Alston (1954-1976)

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    Total Seasons: 23

    Record: 2040-1613 (.558)

    Teams: Brooklyn/Los Angeles Dodgers

    Highlights: 7 Pennants, 4 World Series titles

    One of the most decorated non-Yankees managers in baseball history, Walter Alston and Tommy Lasorda formed two ends of a most incredible run: from 1954 to 1996, a period of 43 years, the Dodgers had only two managers.

    And it's not like they had Connie Mack or something; Alston won four World Series titles in his 23 years.

8. Joe Torre (1977-2010)

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    PHOENIX - SEPTEMBER 24:  Manager Joe Torre of the Los Angeles Dodgers watches from the dugout during the Major League Baseball game against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field on September 24, 2010 in Phoenix, Arizona.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Ge
    Christian Petersen/Getty Images

    New York Mets (1977-1981): 286-420

    Atlanta Braves (1982-1984): 257-229, 1 Division Title

    St. Louis Cardinals (1990-1995): 351-354

    New York Yankees (1996-2007): 2 Wild Cards, 10 Division Titles, 6 Pennants, 4 World Series Titles

    Los Angeles Dodgers (2008-2010): 2 Division Titles

    It is difficult to give Joe Torre too much credit for his record with the New York Yankees, especially when you consider the fact that he really accomplished nothing at all in his other stops in the Majors.

    The New York Yankees of the Joe Torre Era were essentially built when he got there, and spent his entire tenure buying the biggest free agents in baseball every season.

    Indeed, when you consider the level of talent he had on his team each season, it is almost disappointing that Joe Torre's teams didn't get to the World Series more often than they did.

    From 2001 to 2007, the Yankees won 94 or more games seven straight years and only went to the Fall Classic twice, losing both times.

    Obviously, winning four World Series titles is an amazing accomplishment–only five guys have done it–but one has to wonder how many titles the Yankees of 1996 to 2007 would have won under any other manager.

    Would it have been just as many?  Might it have been more?

7. Sparky Anderson (1970-1995)

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    Cincinnati Reds (1970-1978): 863-586, 5 Division Titles, 4 Pennants, 2 World Series titles

    Detroit Tigers (1979-1995): 1331-1248, 2 Division Titles, 1 Pennant, 1 World Series title

    Take a good look at this picture. Check out that leathery skin, that white hair, and that creased-face. Sparky Anderson was 44 years old in his last season managing the Cincinnati Reds. Is this a crazy picture or what?

    The mark of greatness for a manager, or at least one that manages multiple teams, must be the ability to succeed with multiple teams.

    Sparky won a World Series in Detroit after managing one of the greatest teams of all time in Cincinnati. This makes him one of four managers to win the World Series with two different teams, and one of only two to do it during the divisional era (1969-present).

6. Bill McKechnie (1915-1946)

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    Total Seasons: 25

    Record: 1896-1723 (.524)

    Teams: Newark Pepper (Federal League), Pittsburgh Pirates, St. Louis Cardinals, Boston Braves, Cincinnati Reds

    Highlights: 4 NL Pennants, 2 World Series titles

    Bill McKechnie was a rare manager to experience success in two very different eras in baseball. His first World Series title came as manager of the 1925 Pittsburgh Pirates, an offense-first team at the height of the offensively explosive 1920s, and his second title came as manager of the Frank McCormick/Bucky Walters/Ernie Lombardi Cincinnati Reds, a team with superior pitching and just enough hitting to win 100 games.

    McKechnie had startling success–19 winning seasons with five different teams in 25 years–that becomes even more impressive when you realize that there is no single thing that you can point to that explains his success.

    He was the first manager to win a World Series with two different teams, and is one of two managers to win a pennant with three different teams.

5. Bobby Cox (1978-2010)

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    WASHINGTON - JULY 27:  Manager Bobby Cox of the Atlanta Braves watches the game against the Washington Nationals at Nationals Park on July 27, 2010 in Washington, DC.  (Photo by Greg Fiume/Getty Images)
    Greg Fiume/Getty Images

    Atlanta Braves (1978-1981, 1990-2010): 14 Division Titles, One Wild Card, Four Pennants, One World Series Championship

    Toronto Blue Jays (1982-1985): One Division Title

    It is hard to know what to do with Bobby Cox. On the one hand, he went to the playoffs 15 times and came away with only one World Series championship (2010 pending). His inability to succeed once in the playoffs is almost unmatched.

    On the other hand, he went to the playoffs 15 times, including 14 straight seasons from 1991 to 2005. And he didn't exactly have a New York payroll either.

    And, what is often overlooked about Bobby Cox is that it was Cox who, as General Manager of the Braves from 1986 to 1990, drafted Ron Gant, Tom Glavine, Steve Avery, Pete Smith, David Justice, and Chipper Jones, in addition to trading Doyle Alexander in 1987 for a Tigers prospect named John Smoltz.

    After laying this groundwork, in 1990 Cox appointed himself manager and the Braves never looked back.

4. Tony La Russa (1979-2010)

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    PHOENIX - JUNE 11:  Manager Tony La Russa #10 of the St. Louis Cardinals stands with Dave Duncan #18 and Mark McGwire #25 in the dugout during the Major League Baseball game against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field on June 11, 2010 in Phoenix, Ariz
    Christian Petersen/Getty Images

    Chicago White Sox (1979-1986): 522-510, 1 Division Title

    Oakland Athletics (1986-1995): 798-673, 4 Division Titles, 3 Pennants, 1 World Series Title

    St. Louis Cardinals (1996-2010): 1318-1110, 7 Division Titles, 2 Pennants, 1 World Series Title

    Tony La Russa is one of four managers ever to win a World Series with two different teams, which would tend to indicate that the success he's had is not a product of the talent he's been given as much as it is the skills he brings to the table.

    One of the keys to La Russa's success has been his pitching coach, Dave Duncan. Duncan has left his fingerprints all over La Russa's teams, from LaMar Hoyt's Cy Young Award with the 1983 White Sox to the resurrection of Dennis Eckersley and development of Dave Stewart in Oakland to the almost hilarious stream of overachieving mediocre pitchers in St. Louis (Ryan Franklin, Braden Looper, Jeff Suppan, Jason Marquis, Woody Williams, Kyle Lohse, Todd Wellemeyer, Joel Pineiro, To dd Stottlemyre...).

    La Russa has also had a lot of luck with his players, though. He's had the privilege of managing Eckersley, Mark McGwire, Jose Canseco, Rickey Henderson, Albert Pujols, Scott Rolen, Jim Edmonds, Chris Carpenter, Adam Wainwright, and Jason Isringhausen.

    Of course, after a guy spends 30-plus years managing some of the best talent in the game, you start to realize it can't be a coincidence.

3. Connie Mack (1894-1950)

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    Pittsburgh Pirates (1894-1896): 149-134

    Philadelphia Athletics (1901-1950): 3582-3814, 9 Pennants, 5 World Series titles

    What do you do with Cornelius Alexander McGillicuddy? Do you give him credit for the greatness of his 1909-1914 team and his 1927-1932 team, or do you rightfully blame him for the seven straight last-place finishes that preceded the first team and the nine straight years in either seventh or eighth place that preceded the second?

    At the end of the day, Connie Mack was a player who bought a ball club; whereas most of the other teams in baseball were owned by men who had other ventures, Mack's sole income was his baseball team. Thus, he had no outside income to invest in his team or a farm system. 

    It is no coincidence that the dismantling of his first great team came right as the Federal League came to town, while his second dismantling came during the Great Depression.

2. John McGraw (1899-1932)

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    Total Seasons: 33

    Record: 2763-1948 (.586)

    Teams: Baltimore Orioles (NL), Baltimore Orioles I (AL), New York Giants

    Highlights: 10 Pennants, 3 World Series titles

    Easily the greatest manager in National League history, John McGraw took over the New York Giants at the age of 29 and promptly turned the team around, winning his first pennant within two years and his first World Series a year later. McGraw's teams finished with winning records in all but three seasons.

    McGraw's major league baseball career began in 1891 at the age of 19, and ended in 1932 at the age of 59. McGraw died two years after his retirement.

    Think about this: only eight managers, all time, finished 400 or more games over .500; McGraw finished 815 games over.

1. Joe McCarthy (1926-1950)

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    Total Seasons: 24

    Record: 2125-1333 (.615)

    Teams: Chicago Cubs, New York Yankees, Boston Red Sox

    Highlights: 9 Pennants, 7 World Series titles

    Joe McCarthy gives us everything we would want from a manager. He succeeded with the Chicago Cubs, taking them to the 1929 World Series.

    With the New York Yankees, he won seven World Series titles and never finished fewer than 10 games over .500. Then, at the end of his career, he finished with 96 wins with the Boston Red Sox in consecutive seasons.

    You could credit the Yankees for all of his success, but lots of guys have managed the Yankees.  Only Joe McCarthy has the .615 winning percentage, the highest of all time.

    Put it all together, and Joe McCarthy must be considered the greatest manager in Major League Baseball history.