Paul Dolan Changes: Not Coming Soon

I know what you all read last night and saw this morning. Indians CEO Paul Dolan says he is not interested in making any changes to his front office or with his manager. Now before you all freak out and scream bloody murder at the Dolan ownership, take a look at the actual quotes themselves.

“We all have a lot of work to do, but their jobs aren’t at stake in this. As I sit here today, I have no intent to make any changes. I have to understand what’s happened. I’m not going to have that understanding today. Hopefully, sometime in this off-season, we’ll be able to assess and move from there.”

“I don’t know how (to explain the free fall), don’t understand exactly what’s happened — other than we haven’t performed at virtually every level of the game for the last month.”

“We had a team threatening to make the playoffs that has collapsed. We have to understand what happened, and I’m not going to make judgments on that right now. It’s going to take more time to assess what we have, what we need, and what we’re capable of doing.”

First things first. Knee-jerk reactions to a long process are never a good idea. That is not the proper way to run any business. Firing both a GM and a manager in the middle of a season is very rare. These are obviously strange circumstances, considering the fact that a team that was in first place two months ago has lost 21 of 25 and are the second worst team in the American League. But nevertheless, I can understand Paul Dolan’s thinking. Let them sit back and marinate on what happened. There is no rush to do anything rash now. There is still a month of games left to be played.

Who knows, maybe these guys go on a tear and win 10 in a row. (OK, I laughed out loud while typing that last sentence, but stranger things have happened in baseball, that is for sure).

Now read those comments again, and consider when and where they were give. Do you honestly think that Paul Dolan was going to say “yeah, Manny Acta’s situation is dicey right now, we don’t know how this team has collapsed, and his job could be in jeopardy?” Or did you think he’d say “this falls on our front office. We see a real lack of talent here and things are going to need to be changed. We will be re-evaluating everyone?”

Of course not.

And if you actually do believe that he would give those kinds of answers, would he really choose Manny Acta’s charity bowling event to do so?

Of course not.

While many of you (me included) don’t think Paul Dolan has been a good owner, one thing you won’t hear said about him is that he isn’t a smart guy. He carefully chose his quotes to make sure he didn’t say anything that was going to come back and bite him, the way his father’s infamous “we will spend when the time is right” blast has followed him for a decade.

Read this quote closely:

As I sit here today, I have no intent to make any changes.

The key part of that sentence is “as i sit here today.” That doesn’t mean that at the end of this debacle of a season, he doesn’t sit down and say to his people, “this isn’t working. The fans aren’t happy. We aren’t happy with the direction of the organization. Changes have to be made.”

I think we all know something is going to come down the pike this winter. The status quo just isn’t the answer. A veteran purge could be coming as well.

As I was putting this piece together, CBS Sports’s Jon Heyman tweeted out this piece of info, that shouldn’t be any big news to Indians fans:

Choo will most likely be dealt this winter to restock that sagging upper levels of the farm system. Closer Chris Perez will be following him out the door. The real question is will Paul Dolan have someone new in place to make those moves.

(photo via @LindseyBaseball/Lindsey Foltin)

  • Harv 21

    Dear TD: Kindly contact me before writing columns so that I don’t waste time typing much the same thing as a comment to a previous post. Thank you for your anticipated cooperation. Also, get out of my head. Sincerely …

  • The_Real_Shamrock

    Here’s the comment(s) I find intriguing and scary: “I have to understand what’s happened. I’m not going to have that understanding today,” um okay my question is who is going to explain it to him? Shapiro and Antonetti? Will they admit to the horrible decisions in personnel and all of the blunders or will they use the same Tribe speak on Dolan as they did their fans? I just can’t help but think of Randy Lerner for some reason at this point.

  • Harv 21

    Here’s how I interpreted that, Sham: I’ll get an outside opinion at season’s end, not in mid-August while I’m talking to Shapiro daily. I interpret it that way b/c the Dolans sort of inherited Shapiro and his philosophies from John Hart and previous ownership, and getting an objective analysis is what I’d be doing if I were Paul Dolan. Not saying an outsider’s opinion will help given the Dolans short pockets, saying that’s what I think Dolan means.

  • mgbode

    well stated. they have a month between the end of the regular season and the start of the free agency period. if a move is to be made, then it is to be made during that time.

  • The_Real_Shamrock

    Now I have a sense of even more deja vu i.e. Lerner being completely oblivious to his team and hiring Mike Holmgren. I sure hope not because you shouldn’t own a team if you are that clueless. I guess we’ll see what happens.

  • mgbode

    that clueless? obviously Shapiro sold the Dolan’s on the strategy and sabremetric system when they bought the team. the had to tear down the older, expensive team and rebuild.

    the advancement of sabremetrics throughout baseball made the Indians “diamond-vision” system even more well-known. our FO members being in-demand continued that faith.

    the teardown meant a couple down years, but 2005-2008 we had an obviously talented team that won 2 Cy Youngs, 1 division and a near-ALCS along with Hafner/Grady being 2 of the games best young players.

    minor successes along the way afterwards seemed like the same plan would unfold (Choo, Asdrubal, etc.). unfortunately, the well dried up on the trade front, the poor drafting finally caught up with us, and we made poor choices in FA. couple that with the disastrous Ubaldo trade and we have what we have.

    but, that doesn’t mean that the Dolan’s were fools for thinking that this FO could rebuild what we had from ’05-’08. it just hasn’t happened. now, the question is if they give them a pardon and a couple years to rectify it or if they just start over.

  • The_Real_Shamrock

    Whoa easy stat boy I didn’t mean to rattle your sabremetric lovin’ soul I was referring to the original quotations from Dolan not understanding/knowing what went wrong. I don’t know about this “diamond-vision” system all I know is what I see and that is a team in shambles and an organization lost from the top to the bottom. Maybe it’s time for this “diamond-vision” system to be scrapped it certainly hasn’t achieved anything substantial. Get out from behind the computer screens and actually watch some baseball maybe I don’t know.

  • Steve

    “I don’t know about this “diamond-vision” system”

    “Maybe it’s time for this “diamond-vision” system to be scrapped it certainly hasn’t achieved anything substantial”

    Do you not see any problem with these two statements in the same paragraph?

  • The_Real_Shamrock

    You forgot the rest of the sentence in the first part, “all I know is what I see and that is a team in shambles and an organization lost from the top to the bottom,” clown!