Sandy, This Ain’t Padooka

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Far be it from me to criticize a Marine with an Ivy League education whose ability to get things done has been hailed from coast to coast, but some of Sandy Alderson’s choices for manager are a bit ridiculous.

First of all, Terry Collins has managed before. He’s not been very good.

…occasionally criticized for his abrasive style and hot temper, his 1997 and ’98 Angel teams contended for American League West titles before collapsing in late September.

So, his teams don’t close and he’s got a temper. No Mets ties, but Omar Minaya loved him. Pass.

Don Wakamatsu? Another guy who Jon Heyman and others seem to be fawning over. Won 85 games in 2009, was fired in August of this year when the preseason darling Mariners imploded. Yep, that a hell of a resume.

During his tenure with the Mariners, he was hamstrung by questionable personnel decision by upper management. He reportedly feuded with Ken Griffey Jr., and got into a physical altercation in the dugout with Chone Figgins. It would be interesting to see how he performs on a bigger stage with a little more talent to work with.

He definitely seems like he’ll be able to handle the pressure of the Big Apple.

Bob Melvin has won a lot of games as a big league manager, has lost more. He won’t have sidekick Bryan Price with him (he just helped the young Reds’ pitchers win the NL Central), who many think is one of the best pitching coaches in baseball. He’s been passed over for other jobs, notably in Milwaukee, that hotbed of pennant-winning baseball. But he’s getting an interview and serious buzz.

The 47-year-old Melvin’s firing comes after a disappointing start by the Diamondbacks, who entered Thursday 8 ½ games behind the Los Angeles Dodgers in the NL West. Melvin, who went 337-340 in four-plus seasons, had one year left on a contract he received after being the 2007 NL Manager of the Year.

“This is a difficult decision, but I feel that our organization needs to move forward with a new voice,” general manager Josh Byrnes said in a statement.

Hitting coach Rick Schu also was fired, and pitching coach Bryan Price resigned. Price was on Melvin’s staff when Melvin managed the Mariners to a 156-168 record in 2003 and 2004. Seattle went 93-69 under Melvin in 2003.

Everyone who reads this blog knows who I think should be the manager but there are others who seriously should be considered if Alderson refuses to see the low risk-high reward advatages of hiring a Wally Backman.

Like Davey Johnson before him, Tim Teufel and Ken Oberkfell were players on elite teams who have won World Series rings, and have managed at several levels in the minor leagues for the Mets. They understand and comprehend the players in the system, perhaps better than anyone else at this moment, who has a future and who does not. Each brings a different tool box of skills to the table, but each are qualified in their own way.

If Alderson is not going to hire Backman, then hire one of these two other guys.

Start fresh. Don’t give the Mets fans a All-Star front office with a manager you feel comfortable with whose hame is Jauss, Hale, Wakamatsu or Melvin.

Clint Hurdle? Good man, but we’ve done the country boy (Art Howe) and the God-fearing man (Jeff Torborg) all before here. Clint wouldn’t last two years.

The only guy who has gone to the playoffs in back to back years with this team isn’t a candidate because you don’t want to pay him for three years what Oliver Perez will make by August, and because he has an opinion about the types of players he’d like.

Obie and Tuff might not sell any tickets, but if you want smart guys who know the personnel, and who know how to win in the big leagues, you’ve got them here already.

Don’t make the same mistake other have made here. This is New York, it ain’t padooka.


5 thoughts on “Sandy, This Ain’t Padooka

    Gerry Bernstein said:
    November 6, 2010 at 1:30 pm

    I agree with you 100%. Wally Backman is the right man for this job at this time. He’s intelligent, he’s a very knowledgeable baseball man, he’s feisty and he’s the one who can light a fire under the players when it becomes necessary to do so. Now, how do you get the word to Sandy Alderson?

      Gerry Bernstein said:
      November 6, 2010 at 1:31 pm

      Get the word to Sandy Alderson that Backman’s the right guy for the job at this time.

    Scott said:
    November 6, 2010 at 10:43 pm

    Who can inspire an apathetic fan base like Terry Collins. Those season tickets will sell like pancakes. More likely manhole covers if it happens.
    Hire Wally Backman!

    […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by heals9, Mark Healey. Mark Healey said: Sandy, This Ain't Padooka – #mets […]

    xmulderx said:
    November 9, 2010 at 9:10 pm

    I still believe Alderson will hire Backman in the end. Sandy is a smart man for a reason and I don’t think you can make your introduction to new york the way he did. When he was dropping a nugget (on what he wanted in a manager) here n there. Whether it was mentioning; fiery, someone to relate to the fans, excite the fans, someone to motivate over 162 games, play into ticket sales etc… then wind up not delivering on it. You can’t tease this fan base like that and think any decision at manager will be accepted. This after all (as mentioned) is indeed NYC.

    In a year where you want this base to accept another year (in all probability) of mediocrity. That just is not going to fly and that means we have not seen the bottom just yet. Do we need that mindset still ? It will be another ugly year where the manager here is going to be held to the fire. Do we need that again? We can accept 2011 as being a bridge year if we have that manager we can relate to and believe in. We could accept Backman not getting the job if you were going w/experience w/ a big name proven guy. But that guy is not on your list of candidates. We just can’t accept some of these names on this list. Who are no better than Backman and in many cases just more of the same. Which is something that NY does not need to go through again. So start fresh w/ a guy who can get a first chance to make a first impression.

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