When It’s Time to Change

Jon Niese was officially moved to the disabled list today to make room for R.A. Dickey, who pitched respectably before Jerry Manuel took the ball from his hands too soon and proceeded to manage the Mets out of yet another yet another winnable game.

I can barely watch anymore, yet we see it almost every night: The Mets get a leadoff runner and in an effort to choke dead whatever rally might come of it, Jerry foolishly orders someone to make an out on purpose, frequently removing an effective pitcher while doing so, reducing the number of shots to drive the guy in and asking the following batter, no matter how bad he’s struggling, to make something happen or bring real pressure on the guy following him. Once he’s turned the game inside-out to get that single run (if that), they’ve barely inched closer to victory since it’s now a question of whether the beleaguered bullpen, the same two guys whether they’re winning, losing or tied, can be nothing less than perfect or risk a humiliating fate. And since the bulletproof bullpen Jerry quixotically pursues exists mostly in theory and rarely in practice, the games are always too close and failures continue to pile up: They’re barely playing .250 ball on the road, and it’s a disgrace.

That Omar Minaya provided Manuel with too many offensive outmakers and a thin rotation shouldn’t sheild Jerry from taking a hit for this team’s failures. Those handicaps ought only to illustrate how counterproductive and foolish Jerry’s whole playing-not-to-lose approach is. The Mets aren’t good enough to try and win every game by one run and make outs on purpose, and it’s time the people in charge realized it.

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One comment

  1. Jon Springer says:

    Submitted by EdgyDC on Thu, 05/20/2010 – 8:45am.
    I’ve never called for a manager’s ouster before, but if they can’t sit him down and explain to him that what he’s doing is creating losing opportunities, not winning ones, then they have to move on.

    I’m sitting on a searing hot seat right now at my job and I don’t feel good about Jerry — who I like — being on one, but the morale of the players has to be plummeting.

    Yes, But . . .

    Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on Thu, 05/20/2010 – 10:51am.
    I agree with everything you say, but it’s only the beginning. Why is Francoeur still playing every day? Why is Bay still in the middle of the order? Why is DW? Why is GMJ still on the team? Why remove a starter who’s pitching well (ex: Santana 2 nights ago) for a PH in a tie game? Is Rusty still on your bench? Mazz? Are you really that better off with a bench bat than leaving in a pitcher who very well might keep the other team off the board til the 9th?

    And, most importantly, where’s the HEART on this team?

    mets

    Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on Thu, 05/20/2010 – 11:54am.
    This team will never win with the top manangement whos running the team

    ??

    Submitted by gored82 on Thu, 05/20/2010 – 11:54am.
    Who’s the kid in the picture?

    This team has no heart and

    Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on Thu, 05/20/2010 – 11:56am.
    This team has no heart and its starts with the top management

    It’s ownership

    Submitted by mikeyrad (not verified) on Thu, 05/20/2010 – 12:18pm.
    Even if the Wilpons fired Omar, Jerry, Hojo, Werthen, and the entire coaching staff, does anyone really think that the people that they hire in their place would be any better? My feeling is that ownership is clueless, and that the only hope for the Mets is for the Wilpons to lose so much money that they’re forced to sell the team with brains and deep pockets. I mentioned brains in order to eliminate the Dolans.

    It’s ownership

    Submitted by mikeyrad (not verified) on Thu, 05/20/2010 – 12:18pm.
    Even if the Wilpons fired Omar, Jerry, Hojo, Werthen, and the entire coaching staff, does anyone really think that the people that they hire in their place would be any better? My feeling is that ownership is clueless, and that the only hope for the Mets is for the Wilpons to lose so much money that they’re forced to sell the team with brains and deep pockets. I mentioned brains in order to eliminate the Dolans.

    ??

    Submitted by GaryL (not verified) on Thu, 05/20/2010 – 12:22pm.
    @Gored82. That’s Peter Brady, of course. Remember, when it’s time to change; it’s time to rearrangeeee. He’s from the Brady Bunch.

    You didn’t recognize Peter Brady?

    Submitted by 9th_string_catcher (not verified) on Thu, 05/20/2010 – 12:29pm.
    Some of us are getting old around here. Much like the losing. Ultimately, I think this team needs to decide what it wants to be. Is it a speed/doubles/running team? Is it a power team? Is it designed to have a starting rotation that only goes 6 innings? Once you determine what it is you want to achieve, you put your players in position to execute the game plan. Jerry doesn’t have a game plan – you can tell that he improvises constantly, which confuses the position players and wears out the relievers.

    My view is this: the Mets do not win when Reyes is a)sidelined, b) slumping, c) excessively moody. When he is on base, traumatizing pitchers and generating runs, he makes everybody better – the pitchers, the rest of the lineup, even the manager. I would stop worring about everything else and focus 98% of my efforts to get him going. It’s simply a different team when he’s playing well.

    I agree – Jerry is not helping. I don’t think they need a disciplinarian in place, just someone who can gain the confidence of these very confused ballplayers. Clint Hurdle, anyone?

    My Two Cents

    Submitted by Gordon Handler (not verified) on Thu, 05/20/2010 – 1:16pm.
    For what it’s worth, Jerry isn’t the problem but he’s not helping either. The problem is the organization. With all of the resources that they have, they’ve put together a team that’s just not as good as even Washington or Florida. I think that they are just poor judges of talent – especially their own. How long did we put up with Murphy in left field when it turned out he could play first base? Last month, Ike Davis wasn’t ready. Today he’s our cleanup hitter. Fmart? Milledge? Can’t miss, right? Young starters of the future who they put in the pen. Trading or releasing serviceable major leaguers (Figueroa, Stokes and going back further Scutaro, Keppinger etc) while holding on to automatic outs like Matthews Jr, Sheffield, etc.) Tying up second base for 4 years with a hobbling singles hitter with decreasing range. You need energy on the team so you send Carter to the minors and keep Catalanotto. Can anyone defend this? I guess that we can hope that if we hit rock bottom, we can start accumulating high draft picks and build like the Rays, but do you have any confidence that they would even draft well?

    I think Jerry is an issue

    Submitted by Jon Springer on Thu, 05/20/2010 – 2:38pm.
    I’m not under any illusion this is a great team, but it ought to be better than it’s performed so far, and Jerry absolutely has to answer for that.

    I just think its gotten to a point where the totality of his strategic interference (that is, sac bunting like crazy and going to the bullpen as early and often as he does) has created an atmosphere where everyone’s frightened and under enormous pressure to get a big hit or throw a perfect inning. It’s obviously not working.

    Omar ought to get whacked too, for the mistakes mentioned above and for hiring what’s turning out to be a lousy manager. But that’s sort of a different issue.

    @9th_string_catcher I agree

    Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on Thu, 05/20/2010 – 5:49pm.
    @9th_string_catcher I agree and somewhat disagree with you. You’re absolutely right about Reyes and his impact on the team, but I don’t think if the Mets ever fire Manuel, I don’t think Hurdle will do any better…but hey, that’s just my opinion man. I mean, I’m only 15 and I don’t know much behind the strategic mindset of baseball and how to work with your players, management/coaching staff and ownership. But what my point is, this team really needs to stop specifically stare at pitches that are thrown RIGHT ABOVE THE PLATE and start having the starters to go deep into innings and to have command on their pitches and work on their location because the Mets are at the top of NL in walks allowed. Last time I checked, we had about 96 walks allowed and we were like 1st in the league and we probably still are. This team needs to rebuild, stop relying too much on Wright, Reyes and those other stars and start looking at some young talent. I personally think Jerry has been a lousy manager, he doesn’t seem to be a manager that cares for his team like a Charlie Manuel or a Tony LaRussa, those managers I admire. Managers that can get their team to make to the playoffs almost every season and strive for a world championship and this team does not have it. We need to start winning ball games, PERIOD.

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