This week's featured SBN Award is the Manager of the Year. Frankly I don't have a ton to say about it. Sure, we can theorize that Joe Maddon is a calming influence on his troops, however outside of lineup and bullpen usage we really don't know how much value he possesses. Ned Yost and Dave Sveum may differ in their teaching philosophies but it's impossible to truly judge them.
In all honesty the MOY is almost always given to the "surprise" team's manager, or the manager of the best team. That's not to say the award is entirely useless, but does anyone truly believe that Dusty Baker (three-time winner) is a better manager than Davey Johnson? There's only so much influence a manager can have over his team's performances, and I can't help but go back to Joe Maddon for numerous examples. To believe Maddon suddenly learn this off-season how to make his team win 31 more games seems silly, especially when you consider his personnel upgrades, but some people may say he kept the team focused, not me, but some.
My question is: how do you judge managers?