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Wagner: Oops, I Did It Again

Mike SteffanosFriday, June 13, 2008
By Mike Steffanos

Game 65: Diamondbacks 5 - Mets 4 (10)

I'm not looking to kick a guy when he's down, but it's getting hard to defend Billy Wagner against the charge that he wilts in big spots. He did it in the 2006 NLCS against St. Louis, he struggled last season when things fell apart for the Mets, and he's doing it again. His failure to save any of his last 3 attempts have most likely cost Willie Randolph his job, and probably Howard Johnson and Rick Peterson, too.

Think about it. If Wagner had saved last Sunday's game in San Diego and the two he blew against Arizona, the Mets would be 33-32 and coming off a nice series win. I've never booed a guy for performance in my entire run of being a fan, and usually it gets under my skin when I hear it. When Wagner was booed walking off the field after this one, however, it didn't bother me at all. I still wouldn't have done it, but I can't blame anyone who did one bit.

Plus this was the second straight great start from Santana that the team didn't win.

One non-game related item:

Lynn Cohen of GaryKeithandRon.com let us know that a new Keith shirt has been added to the lineup. It's pretty sharp -- just like number 17 himself. Don't forget, from now through Sunday use coupon code yodaddy to save 15% on GKandR merchandise. And remember, your money goes to support three good causes.

Happy Friday the Thirteenth, everyone -- and doesn't that seem somehow appropriate?

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About Mike: I was the original writer on this web site, actually its only writer for the first 15 months of existence. Although I am grateful for the excellent contributions of my fellow writers here, I have no plans of stepping back into strictly an editorial role. I started this thing in the first place because I love to write and I love the Mets, and blogging here keeps me somewhat sane. If you haven't had enough already, more bio info can be found here.

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Comments (8)

This is just absurdist...Willie is not the cause of this effect...Baseball is a game of cherency..the parts must mesh into the whole with efficiency and precision...a manager can influence the game in limited ways....the lineup depends on the players that he is given and their respective injuries, the selectivity of the use of the bullpen and the timing of their placement in the game, some baserunning strategem and the occasional motivational speech...but other than this a manager can only lead by example..if he stays level headed and unemotional than it stands to reason that the players will exemplify those same behaviors. Willie was an infielder so it would appear that he could positively demonstrate technique to the players even during the season, but most of this is the domain of the coaching staff...Im sure that Willie suffers greatly each loss and miscue in a mannner that we cant even relate to...imagine how he feels at night after a loss lying in bed reviewing each moment..Give me a break...Baseball is capricious as a sport and unrelenting in its "fishbowl" view of the fans and especially media...It is a game....men are dying in Iraq and Afghanistan..lets get some perspective..if we had lives devoted to bringing G-dliness into the world thru acts of kindness and goodness, then we would recognize that its a void in peoples lives that make them attach such significance to a diversion...do something for your neighbor today and see if it doesnt have a more lasting effect than a no-hitter!

Wow. Heavy stuff from Anonymous above. True, but very heavy.

I feel for Willie Randolph the man, but Willie Randolph the Mets manager has evidently done little to inspire the 25 men he's charged to inspire. Sure, he's taking some undeserved heat, but much of the praise a manager of a winning team gets is just as undeserved. Just as no president has much of anything to do with the price of gasoline or the ups and downs of an economy, the manager is sometimes blameless when he's blamed. In this case, I don't think even the most ardent Willie supporter can believe he has no role in his team's current woes.

It's a blessing that a Met starter finally has a good start AND gets the win. What's it been, three weeks since one of those. Problem is, the Phillies are cruising to a big win Friday night as well, so we tread water. Three more months of treading water, and we'll be 7 and a half games out of first.

PS - What is "cherency"?

hey anonymous, no offense, but met fans read this blog and post our baseball thoughts to get away from the everyday b.s. of life.it's called being a "fan".next time u want to give a sermon about "cherency" try dear abby..

n8 - only you could have written that one. One thing I'll say is that, although I have supported Willie in the past, a fresh voice may be called for here. Either way, it would be better if management makes up their mind.
Nostra - Not much margin of error left for the Mets, is there?
Gary - If giving a sermon on cherency helps someone to cope with how bad this club has been for a year, why not? I'm thinking of offering coping tips rather than baseball analysis here if this keeps up. Get those dartboards ready -- it could make you rich.

mike, or should i call u doctor mike, baseball therapist to the disgruntled met fan..lol.wait till the met fans see what the prices at citifield for tickets will cost next year..u will be booked for therapy sessions around the clock...

"Hi, I'm Dennis, and I'm a Mets fan."


hey nostradennis, ha ha ..that's funny..maybe that's what we all need..met fan group therapy..on the way out i can sell my willie randolph pictures and u can sell the darts.. lol!!!

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