Baseball Crank
Covering the Front and Back Pages of the Newspaper
June 18, 2009
BASEBALL: Scapegoat

I'm as disappointed as the next guy with how things have gone for the Mets this season, but I seriously can't believe people are starting to call for Jerry Manuel's head. I don't love Manuel as a manager, and yes, like his predecessor he's on some thin ice after a late-season collapse (albeit a slightly less epic one in 2008 than in 2007). But really, what more could the man have done this year? It's not Manuel's fault that Reyes, Delgado, Church, Schneider and occasionally Beltran have been injured. It's not Manuel's fault that Perez, Putz, Pelfrey and Maine have as well. It's not Manuel's fault the team has no legitimate corner outfielders, an overpaid, aging slap hitter at second base and little offense from the catching position. All things considered, this team could be doing a lot worse with all the adversity.

If anybody deserves to be sacked, it's the training staff. You can't eliminate injuries, but the Mets rather persistently seem to have trouble diagnosing them and getting people back in the lineup quickly without getting reinjured. Maybe that goes higher up the organization than the trainers, but dammit Jim, Manuel's a manager, not a doctor.

Posted by Baseball Crank at 8:56 AM | Baseball 2009 | Comments (8) | TrackBack (0)
Comments

Not to mention that their ace pitcher - the guy they absolutely count on to be great - has been in a funk for the last month.

Posted by: A.S. at June 18, 2009 11:01 AM

Observation-I am Yankee fan but I follow the Mets also and wish them well. They are beginning to look like the Knicks, Pacers, Cavaliers when Jordan was around. Very good but not good enough to take that last step. Delgado is gone after this year and Beltran probably only has 3-4 more great years. Besides Santana the SP is a mess. F-Rod despite his record save season was not even in the top 3 closers last year (Soria, Lidge and Rivera all had more dominating seasons) and is beginning to lose some speed on the fastball. They might need to do something radical like trade Reyes. If I was them, with their ballpark, I would concentrate on getting 2 top line starters by trade or free agency and become a team that wins games 2-0, 3-2, 2-1, 4-3, etc

Posted by: dch at June 18, 2009 11:07 AM

I don't think the Mets would be hugely improved with someone besided Manuel, and I'll grant you all the things you mentioned in the post.

That said, it is his fault that he has been inconsistent in his dealings with Church and Murphy. It is his fault that he batted his best hitter fifth for several weeks on end. It is his fault that he insists on bunting far more than necessary. It is his fault that his bullpen management has been at times - to put it generously - questionable.

He's just not a good manager. He is not the only or even main reason the Mets have been marginal this year, but he doesn't help.

Posted by: paul zummo at June 18, 2009 11:23 AM

Julio Lugo is still available. For your starting pitching woes maybe you would like to consider Dice-K. Package deal. Omar, pick up the phone, pick up the phone.

Posted by: jim at June 18, 2009 2:47 PM

The whole NL East stinks this year. The Mets, despite their troubles, are only 3 games behind the Phils, who can't win at home and are having injury problems themselves.

Posted by: Asburn Alley at June 19, 2009 4:16 AM

O-R-I-O-L-E-S!!!

Posted by: Maryland Conservatarian at June 19, 2009 6:03 AM

No, seriously, Juilio Lugo is still available.

Posted by: jim at June 19, 2009 4:07 PM

I'm so excited to get rid of him I can, apparently, no longer spell his name correctly. Although I guess if I wanted to give him a nickname or something it would be E-6 or K.

Posted by: jim at June 19, 2009 4:08 PM
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