2008 Topps John Russell
The Pirates lost nearly 300 games under Russell the past three seasons. Click here for a recap and analysis of Russell's performance as manager.
The Pirates have not had a winning season or a playoff season since 1992. Defenders of the MLB status quo may try to place blame for the Pirates' woes on Russell, but clearly that scnario makes no sense given the Pirates' history in the Marvin Miller era. One of the players recognized the folly of expecting a new manager to make a difference in today's climate:
The general mood about Russell's ouster might have been best summed up by one of the team's more important players saying, "What's this going to do?"
Another commentator tried to place blame for the Pirates' failures on the man who has owned the team for the most recent four of the past 18 losing seasons in a row.
Denying the economics of the Marvin Miller era leads the Miller defenders to scapegoat individuals who may be responsible only for failing to overcome the free agency obstacle. The scapegoaters are pointing at small pieces of the disaster while exempting the architect of this disaster from criticism.