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Much Ado About Nothing

Mike SteffanosThursday, July 24, 2008
By Mike Steffanos

I owe you all a post on the last two games of this series, but I have to run out of here in a few minutes for a much-needed night out. Before I go, I just wanted to weigh in on a couple of things.

I have a missing person's report out for the Phillies fans that emailed or left obscene comments (removed) after Tuesday night's loss. Seriously, where are you guys? Let's talk now.

All kidding aside, I know Mets fans do this sometimes with Phillies blogs -- probably right now. Mets fan or Philly fan, if you're not going to face the music when it doesn't go right for your team, get lost. We had a word for folks that like to dish it out but not take it when I was growing up -- punks.

To the Times' William Rhoden: where are you now? It's easy to jump on a team when they have a tough loss and throw out all kinds of ridiculous accusations when a team is down. I know you're a Yankee's fan, but you're supposed to have some objectivity. Instead, you just seemed determined to endlessly defend Willie Randolph and blame everyone else involved with the Mets for Willie's firing. Maybe the Times' sports editor should show some leadership and stop allowing you to indulge your biased obsession in this matter.

The Mets learned the hard way in 2007 that what you were able to accomplish the season before doesn't carry over unless you bring it. Some of the folks who thought the Phillies could just walk on the field and the Mets would fall over for them are learning the same thing.

Two straight series against the Phillies. Both times the Mets lose a heartbreaker in the opener despite a strong performance from Santana. Something like that would have buried them deep last season. This season their record in the other five games of both series is 5-0. Seems like some leadership is coming from somewhere, doesn't it?

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 (4)

William Rhoden; I remember, back when Barry Bonds was closing in on the career home run record, listening to a round table discussion held on the PBS radio station concerning Bonds and the reaction of the fans to his achievement. Rhoden wasted not a sentence going for the racial angle, which struck me as particularly knee-jerk since the man he would be passing on the list was Henry Aaron. A reporter who displays so little objectivity is hard to trust on much of anything.

On the other hand, it's hard to fault an ordinary men feeling protective toward his own. I was at the game Wednesday in company of a friend who is black, and HE wanted to discuss whether the Randolph firing was really necessary, and if I thought Willie would get another chance somewhere. My friend is a smart cookie, too, and no bigot; he can read a standings sheet as well as the rest of us.

My thought then and now was: sometimes management simply has to change; and the cause has more to do with the nature of employees than of any manager in particular. It is a pretty generally recognized concept in business, and baseball, played as it is by human beings, is not exempt.

I also thought it was time for a change. Again I liked Randolph, he has a good baseball background and is a solid and respected guy in the business. Problem was he could not get the team to buy into his style of management. I'm not saying Jerry Manuel is the second coming, but as you say look at the standings and it was obvious that a change was necessary, it happens in all aspects of business everyday. Unfortunately, Randolph could not get the team to respond and Manuel for the most part has. Now they just need to build on the lead....Lets go Mets!

I liked Willie. However, I wasn't opposed to the idea that sometimes you just need to change it up. What I have a problem with is that they went with Manuel, who was just as much a part of the collapse. His isn't a new voice, it's the same voice with more authority. I haven't much cared for what he's done so far, and I think the standings reflect more the relaxed nature of not having to deal with the situation, with the lack of any more west coast trips, and of course, that the Phillies are mediocre.

dd - I think I understand his motivations for defending Willie, but he needs to move on. I also found this article a pretty cheap shot at the whole team.
LJ - I think Willie caused a lot of his own problems with his paranoia regarding the press. He was a pretty stubborn guy, and that probably reflected in some of the dealings with the team, too.
Ceetar - I don't think there were any real alternatives from the outside that were all that great. I have to disagree with you on Manuel, though, I don't think you could blame much of the collapse on a guy who was only a coach.

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