Recently ousted Mets hitting coach Dave Hudgens was a guest of Michael Kay on ESPN Radio where he said:
“If they want a winner in that town, I would let the purse strings loose and let Sandy do whatever he wants.”
This basically goes to what most of us have been saying all day here; spend some money and bring in better players.
May 26 – Mets Fire Dave Hudgens
Following a gut-wrenching 5-3 loss to the Pittsburgh Pirates on Monday at Citi Field, Sandy Alderson announced that he had fired hitting coach Dave Hudgens and replaced him with longtime Mets minor league hitting coordinator Lamar Johnson.
“We’ve had issues home and road over the last several years, not just this season,” Alderson said. “Our situational hitting is not where we want it to be.”
Hudgens spoke to MLB.com after he learned of his dismissal and blamed the fans booing for the Mets’ hitting woes at home not the dimensions.
“I really just think guys tried to hard at home. I think the fans are really tough on the guys at home. How can you boo Curtis Granderson? They have no idea how hard this guy works and how he goes about doing his business, doing his job. He gets off to a slow start and they’re booing him? Come on. It’s tougher at home to play than it is on the road, there’s no doubt about it.”
Hudgens wasn’t that surprised by the firing or broken up by what happened, however he did take one other parting shot on his way out. He told Marc Carig of Newsday:
“I’m glad I don’t have to listen to those guys anymore. I just shake my head at the old-school guys that have it all figured out. Go up there and swing the bat. Well what do you want to swing at? It just confounds me. It’s just hilarious, really.”
Former batting champion and MVP Keith Hernandez has been the most critical of the Mets’ hitting philosophy.
Hudgens had to go. He can mock his critics all he wants, but this is a results oriented business and in four years the Mets’ offense continues to be among the worst in the game.
The Mets are hitting just .237 with a .352 slugging percentage on the year and things look to be getting worse instead of better.
But lets save some blame here for Sandy Alderson who engineered this roster and keeps below average players in key positions while singing their praises, like Lucas Duda whose OPS ranks 28th among all first basemen and Ruben Tejada who until 5 days ago was the worst performing everyday player in the majors.
The other issue is something Alderson said when he announced the firing, “Our approach will not change.” So keep that in mind when Lamar Johnson takes over and remember that like Hudgens, they have the same exact playbook.
As I’ve expressed repeatedly over the months, the real problem is the fact we have too many poor players and not enough good ones.
Blame the Wilpons for that, but also the one who’s responsible for buying the groceries. Alderson made the decision to add not one, but two notorious 180+ strikeout guys to a lineup that that whiffed at a historic and record rate in 2013, and then tried passing it off as a vastly improved offense.
Alderson is in the final year of a four year contract, but the Mets have not picked up his fifth option year which many thought would happen last Winter.
This saga is far from over.