Despite Atlanta's worst season since 1990, longtime Braves manager Bobby Cox vowed Wednesday to return next season . . . "I still love the game. It's fun. It's no fun to lose, but I look at it different than most people. The game is fun to me. Coming to the ballpark is fun. I enjoy being able to be a part of the game . . . I won't change my mind."
Now don't get me wrong: I don't for one second blame Atlanta's sorry state on Cox. Sure, he makes me scratch my head just about every game due to something he does, but he's been doing that since he was running the Blue Jays back in the 80s. While he -- like all of the rest of us -- have been blindsided at just how terrible the 2008 Braves truly are, in the normal course of things, if you give him a half-decent team he's usually going to make it good, and if you give him a good team he's usually going to make it great. There is never any drama in a Cox clubhouse. He's an excellent manager, and he should be allowed to manage the Braves until he doesn't want to anymore.
I just don't see why he'd want to. With Glavine likely done and Smoltz hinting he won't be back, the only person on what we now know of the 2009 Braves with whom I can imagine him having a conversation is Chipper Jones. We're back to 1987 again here people. Does Cox really have the energy to put up with the awful baseball and frustrating rebuilding afoot? He says he does, but man, I'm having a hard time seeing it.
I'll admit that it's totally possible that my blindness to what motivates Bobby Cox to hang around the smoking crater that is the Atlanta Braves when he has so many better things he could be doing (e.g. getting inducted into the Hall of Fame. Going Fishing. Watching better baseball on TV) is the reason why I'm some career-frustrated blogger while he's a wildly successful manager.
But still, I just don't get it.