Date of Award

12-2011

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Legacy Department

Economics

Advisor

Sauer, Raymond

Committee Member

Baier , Scott

Committee Member

Tollison , Robert

Abstract

Major League Baseball managers are often blamed for the poor performance of a baseball team. In the past two years alone, there have been eight midseason managerial firings and six postseason managerial firings. While this number may seem high, these numbers have actually been consistent with probabilities of managerial retention since 1930, when baseball was still in the early stages of its development as a professional sport. In the following study, I examine the factors that are taken into account during these managerial firing decisions and what conditions are present when changes do take place. Using Major League Baseball managerial data from 1988-2011, I find that poor team performance with respect to other teams in its division, consecutive seasons of losing records, high age of the manager, and the presence of an interim tag on the manager are all factors that decrease the likelihood that a manager will be retained. On the other hand, recent success at the highest level, in the form of a World Series championship, increases the likelihood of a manager being retained into the next season.

Included in

Economics Commons

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