Team wins = manager is smart.
Team loses = manager is terrible.
That's the long and short of it for most critics.
I do think we have observed an uptick in aggressiveness from Shildt, but it's matching what the players are bringing with their play.
The truth is, now more than ever, it's on the players. If they are checked out or flat or feuding, there is only so much a modern manager can do.
Example: Jayce Tingler.
The hottest manager in baseball a year ago is at risk of being fired because no one can get Fernando Tatis Jr. out of his brooding mood as the Padres fall apart.
The old flip-the-food-spread narrative isn't realistic anymore. For a while, Shildt and the rest of the team seemed to be in play-it-out mode. Circumstances changed and he's adjusted accordingly. Remember, it was the front office that more or less admitted it was hoping for a fortunate bolt of lightning to strike. Well, it did.