As one of the most colorful managers of all time, Casey Stengel, manager of the New York Yankees for 12 years, earned a lot of extremely loyal fans. Included on his team were Billy Martin, Whitey Ford, Bobby Richardson, Yogi Berra, Mickey Mantle and a number of other outstanding players. However, as any coach or manager will tell you, it takes a special talent to convert a team of all-stars into an all-star team.
Casey had that unique ability. He was so good at it that during his 12-year stint he won seven World Series and 10 American League pennants. This is head and shoulders above what any other major league manager was able to do with their team.
So, what was Casey's reward for this incredible record? He got fired. The circumstances are a little unusual, to say the least. When Bill Mazarowski of the Pittsburgh Pirates hit a dramatic bottom-of-the-ninth home run in the seventh and deciding game, the New York Yankees lost the 1960 World Series. Stengel was dumped just five days later and said, "I've been fired because of my age. I'll never make the mistake of being 70 again."
The New York Yankees' owner had a right to do what he did. However, it's like the bull standing on the railroad track. You admire his courage, but you question his judgment. You can admire the Yankee management for doing what they thought was right, but you must question their judgment for firing such an incredibly successful manager.
And what about fairness? Doesn't success deserve some kind of loyalty? Casey's fans were terribly upset about that turn of events, and it causes all of us to wonder what we have to do in order to develop a sense of loyalty on both sides of the table. Loyalty is a very valuable character quality, and those who have it really do have something to smile about!
To find out more about Zig Ziglar and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate web page at www.creators.com.
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