Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Walter Alston (#472)

Walter Alston was the Dodgers' manager from 1954 to 1976. This was a total of 23 seasons, all on 1-year contracts. He was followed by Tommy Lasorda from 1977 to midway through the 1996 season (another 19 1/2 years). So, for 42 1/2 years, the Dodgers only had 2 managers. Compare that with the revolving door of the past 13 years, where 5 different managers have led the Dodgers.

In Alston's first 13 seasons at the helm, the Dodgers finished in first place 6 times, including 4 World Series championships, and finished in second place 3 times.

After a 3-year slump from 1967-1969 (which included two 8th-place finishes), the Dodgers finished in either first or second place in 6 of Walt's last 7 years.

Alston was replaced by Tommy Lasorda for the final 4 games of 1976, but it must have been for health reasons, because the Dodgers were in 2nd place at the time.

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