If the answer is yes, its a good thing.
Not unlike a certain current political figure, Mets GM Omar Minaya was seen often in Messianic visions. But the realities of baseball set in which delivered things accustomed. A loss in the NLCS. A historic September collapse. His hand picked manager messily fired during the season. Another collapse – albeit understandable with a makeshift bullpen. Predicatable media suggestions for his ouster.
No longer was Minaya’s people skills and rock star status enough. But it was never going to be enough anyhow. It had to come from the field and the original Minaya blueprint somehow assumed to circumvent that reality. No, his unique way with people would not be enough. In fact the structure put in place at the beginning of his tenure may well have been the real reason for the epic collapse of 2007. He created a power vaccum that circumvented the manager who’d potentially been a powerful one with his own New York street cred in Willie Randolph.
But it became all wrong and Minaya was left no other choice than to let Willie Randolph go in what proved to be a sloppy, classless manner. He may prove to be a lucky man that Jerry Manuel was available to be given the job on an interim basis.
It quickly became clear the interim tag would be removed from Manuel. The club played differently and responded to all things baseball differently. Not that is was just Randolph. It was something far more subtle in a shift in energy and influence from Minaya to Manuel.
Faced with the “Three Headed Monster” of Frank Cashen, Al Harazin and Joe McIlvaine, Davey Johnson was quoted as saying in 1985 the Mets needed to speak with one voice. He took alot of heat but Johnson had been right. Only when the team on the field’s strongest influence came from the field did the team begin to succeed. And Johnson and the Mets demise after the 1990 season should have been predicatable when two of his coaches were fired. The same was done to Randolph when Minaya fired Rick Down during the season.
If the lesson holds and the club become’s the manager’s and not the GM’s in perception, it could turn out to be a very good thing indeed.
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This post was written by bobsikes on February 26, 2009