It was interesting to hear Jerry Manuel evaluate his performance a couple of nights ago on SNY, admitting he pushed the envelope in bringing back Jose Reyes and Carlos Beltran, and the experiment with Reyes at third.
Much of the self-evaluation had been written by posters at the time, but it must be remembered Manuel is working off different information and conditions that we were.
Quite simply, Manuel knew there was pressure on him to win this year, and that only made it easier to be tempted, especially when the player says he’s ready.
Manuel didn’t get into it, but there was inconsistency in how he made out his lineup, set up his bullpen and bench. Lest we not forget, it was Manuel’s insistence to stay with Jenrry Mejia, who has been shut down with a shoulder injury.
I also didn’t like how Manuel handled Jeff Francoeur and John Maine, but there will always be dust ups in the player-manager relationship.
Tuesday night Manuel was candid, forthright and honest. There was very little excuse making, other than to say the collapse of the offense played a major factor into the season’s outcome. And. I don’t look at that as an excuse as much as a statement of fact.
If this had been Manuel’s first season with the Mets, you could make an argument for another chance, but he presided over the September collapse in 2008 and last year’s disaster. There were extenuating circumstances after both that warranted a second chance, the bottom line is that through a myriad of reasons, the Mets have taken a step back since 2006, and in this market, with this stadium and the expectations, somebody will have to pay the price for failure.
Keeping Manuel with roughly the same payroll as this season is to tell the fanbase “our hope is that we stay healthy and improve,’’ which is something they’ve been saying since Carlos Beltran took that third strike from Adam Wainwright.
Keeping Manuel would be saying this year was acceptable.
John Delcos has covered Major League Baseball for over 20, including the last dozen in New York. You can read his blog, http://www.newyorkmetsreport.com