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Indians Indians Archive Indians Fire Acta, But Who's Accountable?
Written by Nino Colla

Nino Colla

acta headYou know why I'm here, so let's just cut to the chase. I have a lot to get off my chest.

This has been the sleeping giant in Cleveland for the past few weeks. Ever since a horrific slide, ever since Chris Antonetti said that he was fine with Manny Acta as his manager next season.

Yeah, right.

Today, the Indians fired Manny Acta and essentially made him the scape goat for one month of a season. Other than losing, what did one month change for someone to decide, no-no, this isn't the right guy to lead our team next year and beyond.

I'm not here to debate whether or not Manny Acta did a good job or a bad job. I'm not here to debate whether or not firing Manny Acta was the right move or not. Quite frankly, I don't know if it was the right move, so I'm not one to say it was a move that needed to be made just now.

And that's exactly it. Why now? To get a "head start" on finding candidates because the Astros already hired someone? Who cares...

The Cleveland Indians were fine with Manny Acta as their manager not but a few weeks ago. A historically bad slide occurs and all of a sudden, they have changed their minds.

Talk about reactionary. What so significantly changed to prompt the Indians to not only make this move, but want to make this move now? Why did they have this discussion a week before the season was ending? I get making the move when you decide upon it and not having a lame-duck coach, but why couldn't they wait the five days until this season ended?

What is the purpose to it?

Is it to save someone else's job?

Is that really what it is about?

One thing I'd hate for this franchise to turn into is what has happened to the Cleveland Browns. Maybe I'm out of place for saying this because I'm not the same fan I am for the Browns as I am for the Cleveland Indians. I don't like the Browns, never have, never will, my allegiances in football remain elsewhere.

But being in the market it is kind of hard not to know a whole lot about them, and what I know is that for awhile, it was a revolving door. A revolving door of coaches that were being trotted out, one after another because the previous guy simply couldn't get the job done. And trust me, this isn't the only sports franchise that has had that issue. You could look at the Pittsburgh Pirates, the Detroit Lions, and probably go to the NBA and find a few recent examples.

The guys making the decision as to what the talent on the team looks like can also make the decision as to who is directing that talent. And for more than a decade now, while that man has not been the same, it has been the same regime. Chris Antonetti, however, is the one pulling the strings in the Cleveland Indians organization as of late and he himself has made a few critical choices that have put us in the position we currently see our Cleveland Indians.

And now he is the one, along with the front office, who has decided that Manny Acta is no longer the man for the job and that he must go. That Acta is the problem here and the reason for the Indians failures and that he must be the one blamed.

But I ask you... Where is the accountability for that group? Where is the plea to say that we must do better acquiring talent? Where in all of this is the regime standing up and saying that we are just as much as responsible for what has happened here as Manny Acta and we must rectify that?

Of course, no man would throw himself on the sword. And of course, when he does that, if he does that, he also takes Manny Acta, his coaches, and most of his players with him. 

But maybe that's the point? Maybe it's time. I've supported this regime for years. I've stood by decisions Mark Shapiro has made and preached the kool-aid he was serving out. I'm guilty too. But there it is. The Cleveland Browns. This guy isn't working for what WE want to do? Okay, let's make a change. That will convince the fans we are doing something.

Well, not anymore. You had a good gameplan. You got us to the ALCS one year. We almost won it all! Oh how different would it be if we were to win it all. Perhaps significantly different today.

But the fact of the matter is the Indians didn't win it and have not come close since. They have only gotten progressively (no pun) worse. 

And now a manager, regardless of if you thought he did a good job or not, has paid the price for it. Eric Wedge got a few years. He got more than a few years. He also got a good collection of talent and with it, he got the team far. You don't need an excellent manager to do marginally well. You need talent. This team has none and Manny Acta could actually be commended for what he did with what little he was handed.

But again, that is not why I'm here.

I'm here to ask why and when? Why have we reached this point and when is someone going to hold that front office accountable for what has happened here? We cannot watch a revolving door of managers, being promised that the guy we have leading this team is the problem and that a new one would fix all of it. If we do, then we run the risk of being in decade-long holes of misery and unhappiness as fans of this team. You can say that we haven't won a title in many years, but can you say that the 90's was not a fun time?

Losing is not fun. Losing the same way, with the same people in charge is even more frustration to add onto it. 

I'm not saying Chris Antonetti needs to go... I mean, I think he should be the one to go in this instance if you had to pick, but there needs to be accountability somewhere other than with inside the dugout. The suits need to step up to the plate and own something. If not owning what happened, owning what happens from here on out for a good amount of time.

Who is the one that traded two starting pitching prospects for a mentally and mechanically damaged Ubaldo Jimenez? 

Certainly not Manny Acta.

I'm not saying General Managers don't make mistakes, but it certainly is not Acta's fault that Jimenez went out and had another predictably horrible year.

So perhaps the guy who made the decision to bring him in needs to hold himself accountable, or the guy overseeing him needs to have some sort of accountability in place.

That, or we're just going to be right here in this spot three years from now watching another soldier go down in battle.

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