Even after losing 110 games in one season, he was not fired. And they will challenge to win the World Series (WS) for the first time in two years. This is the story of Arizona Diamondbacks manager Tori Lovello (58).
This year’s Major League Baseball (MLB) postseason is full of surprises. Teams that were considered favorites for the championship were eliminated one after another, with the Texas Rangers and Arizona surviving. In particular, Arizona had the lowest regular season winning percentage (0.518) among the 12 teams participating in fall baseball, but succeeded in advancing to the WS.
Coach Lovello, who leads Arizona, expressed deep emotions after winning Game 7 of the National League Championship Series against the Philadelphia Phillies, saying, “I went through dark days. Two years ago, we lost 110 games.” As he said, Arizona recorded only 52 wins and 110 losses in the 2021 season, ranking last in the MLB along with the Baltimore Orioles. Coach Lovello’s career winning percentage is less than .500 (495 wins, 537 losses).
Coach Lovello, who led the team to the division series in 2017, his first year in office, has not even reached the threshold of fall baseball for five consecutive years. He started out as an unknown player, developed a career as a coach, and became a manager, but faced a crisis. Public opinion arose over the dismissal of Arizona general manager Mike Hazen, who hired Lovello, and Coach Lovello’s position was also shaken.
Commentator Lee Chang-seop said, “We went through a difficult time when General Manager Hazen’s wife died after fighting a brain tumor. In a situation where it was difficult for the General Manager to step down, it was difficult to hold only the manager responsible. As a result, we became closer as we overcame the difficult process.” explained.
Coach Lovello, who overcame difficult times, brought the team to the highest level. At the center of it all was exquisite pitching management. Arizona is using only three starting pitchers, including ace Jack Gallen, KBO league player Meryl Kelly, and rookie Brandon Pott. However, various bullpen pitchers were deployed in the right positions to fill in the gaps. This is thanks to the full trust that Manager Lovello placed in pitching coach Brent Strom. Coach Strom was the pitching coach when the Houston Astros won the championship in 2017.
Commissioner Lee Chang-seop said, “Coach Lovello originally seemed a bit clunky, but he became flexible. It was big that he recruited Strom as coach and entrusted him with the pitching part. At the same time, focusing on what he could do better had a big effect.” did.
Arizona took note of the rule changes this year. As it was expected that the stolen base success rate would increase as the size of the base increased, a large number of fast-moving players were added to the lineup. A representative example is rookie Corbin Carroll, who recorded 54 stolen bases this year. Arizona, which ranked second in stolen bases in the regular season, made up for its lack of offense by successfully stealing 21 bases in the postseason.
Coach Lovello has a close relationship with Oakland Athletics advisor Billy Beane, famous for ‘Moneyball.’ But I am not a data believer. However, it is not an ‘old school’ style of supervision that places emphasis on past customs, but is closer to an administrator-style director. Commissioner Lee Chang-seop said, “We refer to data, but do not rely on it. This is the ‘manager-type supervision’ that is popular these days.”
Lovello was an unknown player. He debuted in the big leagues in 1988 and played 11 seasons, but only had a batting average of 0.225 and 15 home runs in 303 career games. In 2000, he also played for Yakult Swallows in Japan. So I understand the players’ feelings well. Kelly and Ilhwa, who have emerged as top stars this fall, are one such example.
Kelly, who joined Arizona in 2019, struggled at the beginning of the season. Although he achieved success in Korea, he was a rookie who reached the big league stage at age 30. Director Lovello used shock therapy. He called him into the room and said, “You are the worst pitcher in the National League right now. If you don’t get better, I have no choice but to send you out.” He continued, “I want to keep using you as a starter. You have to show me that you have the ability.” Kelly changed his pitching and transformed into a pitcher who won 48 games in five seasons.토스카지노 도메인
Lovello and Arizona’s challenge is ongoing. They returned home after winning 1 win and 1 loss in the 1st and 2nd games of the away game. In the third game to be held at 9 a.m. on the 31st, Texas announced veteran Max Scherzer and Arizona announced Pat as the starter.