In a move that has shocked baseball purists, the Chicago Cubs announced Wednesday that in lieu of hiring a new human manager to replace disgraced outgoing skipper, Dale Sveum, they will be pursuing an ongoing partnership with Gateway computers and their latest creation the "Manager-O-Tron 6000", commonly referred to as the "MOT-6"
Given the Cubs recent emphasis on baseball analytics, and the implementation of "instant replay" and "managerial challenges", which begin next season, Theo Epstein, the Cubs President said Wednesday, "It's time to think ahead for the Chicago Cubs. Managers are generally old and grouchy, some of them smell terrible, and they have annoying dietary restrictions and special travel needs which are time consuming and expensive. Sabermetric analysis has proven that managers generally win or lose between 3-5 games a year for their team, while the Manager-O-Tron 6000, has been shown in clinical studies to provide at least an 8 game positive swing for even the worst of ball clubs, such as the one the Cubs are currently fielding." Epstein added. "We consider ourselves pioneers in using modern technology to improve the mediocre product on the field and the game of baseball. With our partners at Gateway, we hope to inspire MLB to consider the use of Robot Umpires, Virtual Foul Poles, and 'Green' concession stands, powered by Fan's clapping. The Mot 6 is another step in modernizing our beloved past time."
The Mot 6 is designed to not only make game time decisions, such as player substitutions, when to hit and run, or bring the outfield in a step, but the Mot 6 bases these decisions on the players themselves in real time. Each Cubs' player must now be microchipped as to provide the MOT 6 with specific data on diet, sleep, exercise, and sexual prowess. Mental well being of the players is also factored by the Mot 6's ability to monitor hormone levels indicating frustration, sadness, fear, anger and joy. The Mot 6 then analyzes this data and provides managerial services such as Days off, restaurant recommendations, Escort services, and Pep talks to both the team and individuals, collected from the wealth of inspirational material from around the globe. If a player is feeling sad, the Mot 6 may quote "Chicken Soup for the Soul" and provide a hopeful onscreen Ziggy comic, or if a player recently had sex, he may be moved up or down in the batting order that day, depending on his performance and emotional confidence levels. The MOT 6 can also access all major Religious texts and self help books, famous rally speeches from movies, and dirty jokes in 17 languages, to provide the Clubhouse with a comfortable, dynamic and customizable player experience.
Much to the delight of Umpires, who often times spend minutes of every game deciphering the illegibly shaky handwriting of detoxing Managers, the Manager-O-Tron 6000 has the ability to improve daily managerial tasks, such as printing it's own daily lineup sheets based upon the most favorable matchups, complete with a variety of fonts and emoticons.
However, the MOT 6 is predicted to also be thorn in the side of MLB Umpires. Having the ability to insult each umpire uniquely based upon his history of blown calls and personal information, such as Mothers name and DUI arrest record, all while using facial recognition software to know when it's pushed the official too far in order to not be thrown out of the game, make the Mot 6 the most effective arguer in baseball. However, when data suggests it would inspire the team and crowd to be booted from a game, The Mot 6 has the ability to kick dirt on an umpires shoes to not only be ousted, but to clean out the Mot 6's cooling fans from dust and debris. This "self cleaning" manager is a far cry from sponge baths demanded by Mike Quade, or Lou Piniella's daily pedicures.
"It just makes sense for us." Epstein said. "The Mot 6 is efficient verbally at conveying the teams message at press conferences. Never saying "Look", "Well", or "You Know" incessantly like managers past. It's been programmed to stir up controversy when fan's interest wanes throughout the season by tweeting inappropriate comments about a players wife. And it doesn't eat anything!" Epstein added, "If I could field a team of Mot 6's I would! But we're not there yet...."
We're not there yet indeed. The St. Louis Cardinals have filed a protest with MLB, complaining that the Mot 6 flies in the face of their ability to constantly hire talented human managers who lead them to championships. They argue a Robo-Manager amounts to nothing more than cheating and a money saving gimmick to make a mediocre team, watchable.
MLB has the final say in the matter, but Theo Epstein already has a plan B. Epstein said, "If Baseball won't allow a Computer manager, the solution is simple and lucrative. Fans would pay millions of dollars over the course of the year to be manager for a day. We would still use Mot 6 for every day clubhouse operations and team issues, but the millions generated by middle aged men living out their boyhood fantasy by managing the Cubs for a day, would be enough to buy 12 year old talent from the Dominican Republic, and build the team until 2030 for contracts as low as 35,000 and a milk cow."
Is the Mot 6 the Jackie Robinson for Robots in baseball? Or the Steam drill to John Henry's human sledgehammer. Either way, the Mot 6 is here, and the currently acting manager of the Chicago Cubs.
May God have mercy on our souls.