Over the last eight seasons the Detroit Tigers have been led by the managerial decisions, popular or not, of Jim Leyland.
Under the direction of Leyland, the Tigers have gone to two World Series, three AL Championships, four playoff appearances, and have won three Central division titles. 97.1 The Ticket’s Mike Valenti and Terry Foster believe Tigers fans are split in their views of the team’s skipper due to the fact the team has yet to win a World Series.
“The perception here is that the Tigers are always the better team and have come up short under Leyland,” Foster said on his radio show Tuesday.
“This community is tolerating him,” Foster elaborated. “When you talk about him being in control of a dressing room, the fans don’t get see it. They don’t understand him because of his lineups; people see him playing Don Kelly and Brandon Inge. He is not appreciated; look at the payroll and they finished one game ahead of Cleveland. If he wins a title, all of that stuff goes away.”
Leyland has had to face many challenges this season, including the team’s bullpen struggles, Peralta’s suspension, Cabrera’s injuries, and Verlander’s regression this season, while still winning 93 games and a third straight Central Division title.
“I have come to appreciate him. I’ve come to become a fan of him,” Valenti said. “The average person has no idea how he actually manages his clubhouse.”
What are your views of Leyland? Do you appreciate him, or tolerate him?