The Mets have not been asked by any other organization for permission to speak with Wally Backman about a managerial vacancy. So team officials still expect Backman to return as Triple-A Las Vegas manager in 2014, an insider told Adam Rubin of ESPN New York.
The source could not yet guarantee Backman’s return, noting it still would be possible that a newly hired manager elsewhere might want Backman on the major league staff as a coach. But, for now, the Mets fully expect Backman to continue managing the 51s next season.
It looks like Wally will remain with the organization, which of course also means that no other team has called him to interview for any managerial vacancies.
Wally Backman is in the news again after John Erardi of the Cincinnati Enquirer shared some glowing remarks about the former Met and current manager of the Las Vegas 51s and suggested that he could be the right man to manage the Reds going forward.
I have no idea of who, almost a quarter of a century later, is the modern-day ‘‘Sweet Lou,’’ that is, somebody with attitude and confidence (even swagger), most notably with something to prove. he opines before answering his own question by saying he’d consider interviewing a Wally Backman-type, or better yet, Wally Backman himself.
If the Reds are looking for a fiery manager, I think Backman fits that mold. Of course, this is all speculation by Erardi and there’s no rumors out there that the Reds have any interest in interviewing Wally for the job, but maybe the Cincinnati front office should take heed here.
Lord knows, Backman’s got something to prove, he says. “It’s obvious his former team — he was the second baseman for the 1986 World Champion New York Mets, for whom he’s managed and rehabilitated his way through the minors, and is slated to return to Triple-A affiliate Las Vegas next year — isn’t going to elevate him anytime soon.”
I love how he refers to Backman as ‘‘Sweet Lou with baggage’’ in his article. It’s perfect.
“There are worse things one could be called. If I were the Reds, I’d give him a call. Even if Backman isn’t envisioned to be a young Sweet Lou by the Reds’ brass, I’m willing to bet he would have some very interesting things to say about what he would do to light a fire underneath the players.”
I feel bad for Wally, and as I’ve said many times before, the Mets front office would never put their team in his hands. They hardly even view him as a coach on the major league level, let alone manager. Sadly, managing the Mets Triple-A affiliate will be the apex of Backman’s managerial exploits for the Mets organization.
For more on Backman, check out this must-read article by John Strubel.