Tuesday, June 17, 2008
Classless Mets Dump Willie at 3:12am Following Third Win in Four Games
Now former Mets Manager Willie Randolph can breathe a sigh of relief that he has been put out of his misery. A man on the hot seat since the infamous Collapse of 2007, Randolph's job security has waned down with each loss and recently with each multi-game losing streak. It got so bad that the other day it was rumored that Willie was speaking with team management encouraging them to promote someone from his staff once he was inevitably dismissed. While they took Willie's advice and promoted Bench Coach Jerry Manuel to Interim Manager, it was a disgusting way in which to fire a manager who came only one out away from bringing his team to the World Series just two seasons ago when Cardinals' light-hitting catcher Yadier [name that] Molina blasted a game-winning home run to send the Mets packed for the winter. Randolph has always been the fall-guy with Mets management and even with their fans. A Yankee at heart, Willie has struggled with some managerial decisions since moving over to the National League and leading the Metropolitans. Most notably, the double switch has always been a true quagmire to the mustachial Randolph. However, the way in which the Mets told Willie to take a hike will never be forgotten by baseball fans and New Yorkers alike. The franchise let their lame duck manager make the cross-country flight to Anaheim, where he managed the team to a 9-6 victory on Monday night against the Angels. Following the game, Randolph met with members of the media and answered questions. He discussed the encouraging victory and how the team needs to creep its way back to the .500 to compete with the Phillies and the rest of the NL East. When he returned to the team hotel, General Manager Omar Minaya was waiting with an axe. Pitching coach Rick Pederson and first base coach Tom Nieto were also let go and replaced by coaches promoted from the Mets' farm system. Players were in shock as displayed by backup catcher Ramon Castro's quote in the team's hotel lobby: "I'm in shock. I don't know what to say." Minaya is scheduled to speak at a 2pm press conference today at Angel Stadium where he will announce the promotion of Manuel. In the 3 1/2 years as Mets manager, Randolph returned the team to contention and helped mentor young players like David Wright and Jose Reyes while grooming them into major league talents. Willie didn't deserve to go out like this and the Mets do deserve what's coming to them - a roster of elderly, over-paid, under-performing scrubs who aren't even worth the price of a soggy stale hot dog at the crappiest ballpark in baseball. Randolph had already been selected by NL All-Star Game Manager Clint Hurdle to join his staff at Yankee Stadium next month and I hope he shows up in pinstripes to receive a Lou Gehrig-esque response from the appreciative and knowledgeable Yankee Stadium crowd as there is always a spot on Joe Girardi's staff for an excellent baseball mind like Willie Randolph.