Hey, remember when most people -- A's fans, players and local media -- were excited for the A's to hire Ron Washington as manager when the job opened after the 2006 season? Instead, Billy Beane hired his wedding best man, Bob Geren. Five years later, Washington is on the verge of taking the Texas Rangers to its second consecutive World Series appearance and Geren is, well, the guy who had four consecutive non-winning seasons and somehow kept his job until the A's players appeared ready to mutiny.
By the way, did Beane take accountability for his glaringly bad Geren-over-Washington decision. Nope. Days after firing Geren, Beane blamed the media for creating a negative tide against the bumbling skipper. In a recent three-part interview with Athletics Nation, Beane continues to make excuses for the disappointing 2011 campaign, as well as the past half-decade of A's losing seasons. Beane continually blames the "stadium situation" or the "market." In reality, the biggest reason for the A's demise is Beane and his many, many bad decisions. Even worse, he never holds himself accountable and sets a record for making excuses.
For example, when Geren got fired, news reports revealed that many free agents didn't want to come to the A's because of Geren's bad reputation in the clubhouse and ownership's league-wide reputation for not being committed to winning. But that hasn't stopped Beane and Lew Wolff (and their increasingly desperate apologists) from blaming the city of Oakland and the Coliseum for their woes.
Sorry, guys, it wasn't the Coliseum that traded Andre Ethier for 1.5 seasons of Milton Bradley; nor was it the city of Oakland that traded Tim Hudson for three stiffs now out of baseball; or Carlos Gonzalez and Huston Street for what ultimately turned out to be the aging prospect, Michael Taylor; or Nelson Cruz (who has become the star of this year's postseason) for the likes of Keith Ginter. We repeat: Nelson Cruz for Keith Ginter. Wow.
But the most glaringly bad Beane decision is his choice of Geren over Washington, and Washington made it clear in a recent John Shea article that he wanted the A's job:
"If I took this team over when I went to Texas, I believe the same thing we did in Texas, we'd be doing here," said Washington, referring to Oakland. "Billy (Beane) had that chance. I'm not saying he didn't want me, but he went in another direction, and another team wanted me."