Gabe Kapler is National League Manager of the Year

via WIP

Remember when Angelo Cataldi would butt heads with Gabe Kapler on the radio? During the manager’s contractually-obligated morning show appearances?

Angelo thought Kapler stunk, but now Cataldi looks like a moron for the umpteenth time, because Kapler is your National League Manager of the Year:

From Anthony Castrovince at MLB.com:

Kapler was widely expected to win this award, and he finished ahead of second-place finalist Craig Counsell, who guided the Brewers to the NL Central title, and third-place finalist Mike Shildt, who took the Cardinals to the NL Wild Card Game before being relieved of his duties. Counsell and Shildt received one first-place vote apiece. Brian Snitker of the World Series champion Braves finished fourth.

What was not expected, at the beginning of the season, was for Kapler’s Giants to be in contention. They were projected to win just 75 games by Baseball Prospectus’ PECOTA system and given just a 5.7% chance of reaching the playoffs by FanGraphs’ forecast. Instead, they wound up with their best winning percentage (.660) since 1913.

After a brief and unfulfilling two-year tenure in Philadelphia, Kapler was not a popular pick to succeed the esteemed Bruce Bochy, who had guided the Giants to three World Series titles, in this role. But in winning this award, Kapler has done something even Bochy did not do. Prior to Kapler, the only person to win Manager of the Year with the Giants was Baker, in 1993, ‘97 and 2000.

The Giants weren’t supposed to do squat this year. They had baseball’s second-oldest roster and no hope of winning the West, where the Dodgers were supposed to roll the competition. Instead, Brandon Belt, Brandon Crawford, Evan Longoria, and Buster Posey jumped into the hot tub time machine and reverted to their 20-something primes, as the team went on to rip off 107 wins.

Kapler obviously was a first-year manager during his time in Philly. He made PLENTY of mistakes. Too reliant on analytics, and the Phillies front office was a rudderless ship. But the people who saw something and thought he deserved more time? They ended up being right. The radio doofuses who shredded him and blithered on about coconut oil masturbation ended up being wrong.

Shocker!

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