Book review: Ozzie’s School of Management

“Whatever Ozzie is now personality-wise comes from his inherent Ozzieness.  None of the people he played with and for could mold that.  There’s only one Say Anything Kid.”

-Rick Morrissey, Ozzie’s School of Management

When one thinks of successful management techniques, Ozzie Guilllen is not necessarily the first name that comes to mind.  While he brought a World Series to a city that hadn’t seen one in nearly a century, his fiery personality and routinely vulgar outbursts are not characteristics one generally associates with successful leadership.  In Ozzie’s School of Management: Lessons from the Dugout, the Clubhouse and the Doghouse, Rick Morrissey sets out to change all that or at least provide a little insight as to what makes Ozzie tick.

“He’s the Charles Barkley of baseball, but with a position of responsibility and authority.  There are different kinds of leaders.  And then there is Ozzie whose management style is more suited to a mosh pit than a boardroom.”

I’ve always liked Ozzie’s don’t-give-a-shit attitude which is why I jumped at the opportunity to review Morrissey’s book.  I should warn you that this book and the language within it are not for the faint of heart, as you might expect if you’ve ever caught any of Ozzie’s sound-bites over the years.  It’s no Richard Pryor routine but it runs a close second.  Like Doug Glanville says in his review on the cover “I would love to pass Guillen’s words to my young son, only problem is I have to wait until he is twenty-one.” Read more…

Ozzie Guillen’s comments, lost in translation

Ozzie Guillen

Ozzie GuillenOzzie Guillen might as well place a sign near his mouth that states “insert foot here.” After meeting with reporters the Miami Marlins manager feels horrible and knows he was wrong, but still states the message was lost in translation. Somehow, I find that hard to believe.

Guillen is a character and has been for sometime now, but don’t be fooled he knows what he said and he meant it.

I always try to go against the general public’s feelings because I find it enjoyable to argue a point, but it’s hard to find a silver lining when it comes to Fidel Castro.

My translation of Ozzie’s comments are he “loves” the power that Fidel Castro has and finds it amazing he has been in power for such a long period of time.

Castro is a horrible dictator, whom for years has terrorized the people of Cuba.

ESPN’s Dan Le Batard said it best “The ocean between Cuba and Florida is filled with dead Cubans who were trying to get away from him.”

It’s not the comments that he made that rub me the wrong way but the setting.

Hired as the Miami Marlins manager he was brought in for one reason and that reason was to connect with the dominant Latin community and after only one home game he made the most idiotic comment he could have made.

His apology was heartfelt and there is no doubt it comes after the backlash that came after his comments, but admit to what you believe, don’t just use the Spanish language barrier as a crutch.

An excuse can only be used a number of times before it becomes irrelevant and this excuse has been used before.

In August of 2010, Guillen went on a long rant about how he felt Latin American players were discriminated against by MLB. “Very bad. I say, why do we have Japanese interpreters and we don’t have a Spanish one. I always say that. Why do they have that privilege and we don’t?” Guillen said Sunday before Chicago played the Oakland Athletics. “Don’t take this wrong, but they take advantage of us. We bring a Japanese player and they are very good and they bring all these privileges to them. We bring a Dominican kid … go to the minor leagues, good luck. Good luck. And it’s always going to be like that. It’s never going to change. But that’s the way it is.”

He didn’t have a problem translating his feelings on that did he?