Wednesday, 17 September 2008

Either Teamwork or Loser

I have this thing about working with people....either the group functions as a team or it doesn't function. I've been in organizations and work-groups where an individual stood out....as a loser. You had a guy who simply wouldn't put his effort into the project and wouldn't pull his weight. The guy would sit back and just complain....never being part of the team effort.

This week....Curt Schillng of the Boston Red Sox.....a pitcher who will plainly tell you things....finally stood up and talked about Manny Ramirez. Manny could say that he was one of th top five sluggers in the majors....and he wouldn't be lying. But Manny had laid out a continual act that made him one of the most disliked individuals on the team. A few weeks ago....Manny got traded over to the LA Dodgers. Today....Curt finally stood up and spoke some fine words about Manny....which Manny probably didn't appreciate.

• "I'm totally convinced [Ramirez was going to claim he was injured and] play half the games the rest of the year. And he made it clear he didn't want to play. We've all seen what Manny does when Manny doesn't want to play. "

• "The day he realized that they were not going to sign him to an extension was the day he said, 'Uncle. I'm done.'"

• "Nothing makes a guy that respects the game and respects human beings like Terry Francona feel worse than looking at a guy and saying, 'Go ahead, [mess] with me, [mess] with your teammates, I'll put you in the lineup,' and then turn around to a guy who's there every day early working his [butt] off who gets 110 at-bats a year and saying, 'You know what? Yeah, I can't put you in there tonight,'"

• "There were times when you had players who were on like fire duty, 'Show up tomorrow, I'm not sure if you're playing or not, we've gotta find out what [Manny] wants to do.' That's not fair to anybody."

• "The fact of the matter was, you looked at a guy who, at the end of the day, when you look back on the history, never, ever cared about any of us."

Curt is mostly right. I've had a few Mannys work around me in my career with the Air Force. These are individuals who can't deliver and won't be part of the effort. In some cases...I tried to mentor these individuals and in a few cases.....even change their attitude. But when you down to a point where a guy won't change....you've got a loser on the team and you need to dump them.