The PawSox are sitting pretty these days, around 20 games over .500 for the season and alone atop the North Division by 5 or so games. While the fandom is excited and thinking ahead to the playoffs, the manager, Arnie Beyeler, has to be very proud. Beyeler managed the PawSox to the North title a season ago, and at the halfway point of the 2012 campaign, the PawSox look like a good bet to repeat. Arnie was recently named to the International Leagues’ coaching staff for the 2012 Triple A All Star game in Buffalo. Professionally, Beyeler is sitting at the top of the heap.
After sweeping four in Buffalo, Beyeler said he was enjoying his front row seat. “Yeah. It’s fun to watch. Even when we haven’t played that great, we’ve taken advantage of some breaks. We’ll enjoy it while we caan. We all know how baseball is. It’s up and down and a week from now, we could be the guy on the other side of the fence. The guys are playing hard. They get their work in everyday and play a hard nine innings. We see what happens, but these guys keep coming and coming, creating their own breaks, hustling on the bases and playing good defense. It’s been a lot of fun to watch.”
Beyeler credits his pitchers with being a huge part of the PawSox’ success. “We’ve found a way to pitch consistently, whether it’s been starting of the bullpen. We really haven’t really gotten blown out that much this season. If you give this group a chance, they’ll take advantage. They’ll get some guys on base. It seems everybody we send to the plate has a chance to hit the ball out of the park. We’ve been fairly consistent throwing a home run or two up there almost every night. They’re a hard working group. I just sit back and watch them play.”
Beyeler isn’t complaining by any means, but with the abundance of talent in the PawSox clubhouse, he’s got tough decisions to make everyday. “It’s hard everyday. We’ve got a good outfielder on the bench every night, a good infielder on the bench every night and a big lesgue catcher with 8 years time on the bench for us. You’ve got to have that kind of depth to be competitive. Our scouts have done a great job this year putting all this talent together. I know some guys have outs in their contracts. We try not to think too much about that. let’s try to keep everyone together as long as we can and see where we wind up.”
As we know, development, not winning, is the important thing in the minor leagues. Ryan Kalish is a prime example. Kalish missed more than a year battling neck and shoulder problems. He played in 9 PawSox games, hitting nearly .400 with 4 homers and 10 RBI. Kalish was promoted to Boston and arrived in Chicago in time to help spark a7-4 win over the Cubs. Beyeler was a bit surprised at Kalish’s progress. “He came back and was really locked in. We have to give him more days off than we’d like, but you have to remember, he hasn’t played in a year. It’s like Spring Training for him. He’s done a great job.”
With a revolving door turning all the time and the cast of characters changing almost nightly, Arnies’ Army marches on.