As Wally Backman kicks back and rides out the rest of the Brooklyn Cyclones regular season after clinching the division, Dan Martin of the New York Post catches up with him to discuss his thoughts on the state of the Mets and his readiness to be a Major League manager.
“It would be impossible to say I don’t focus on it. Do I want the Mets to do good? Absolutely, because this is who I came up with. Do I want the organization to be better? Absolutely. Are there things that maybe I could do better? Probably.”
I’m a little surprised that Backman would admittedly respond like that. I mean it’s not like he’s pulled a Gary Carter or something worse, but I felt he was playing his cards right by simply saying zip and continuing to add more wins to the best record in the New York Penn League.
I don’t blame him for being so hungry thought after being so close to fulfilling his dream a few years ago with Arizona and then seeing it all blow up.
“I messed up and made a couple of mistakes. I’m not the only one in this game that’s made mistakes. I’ve learned from them and I’m thankful for getting the opportunity for everyone to evaluate me and that’s what I hope I’ve accomplished this year for myself: I’m prepared to go to a major league team. There’s no question in my mind I’m ready for it.”
In all honesty, Backman probably could do a better job than Jerry Manuel and I think most observers would agree.
Yesterday, Peter Gammons said Bobby Valentine was the frontrunner for the Mets managers job. I spoke to someone who is very close to the team and he told me “no way”. He also told me that Wally Backman is well liked by the organization, but the same could be said about a few other candidates that could be considered. I don’t see the Mets making a hasty decision and it looks like they are going to take their time and conduct an extensive and exhaustive process before naming a successor.
A few days ago I wrote that I hoped that’s what they would do, and for now it appears to be that way. So basically, I’m liking what I’m hearing so far.