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Mets Grab Their Willie While Phils Need Manuel
2004-11-04 00:47
by Mike Carminati

The New York Mets tonight tabbed Willie Randolph as their new manager. I'll I can say is thank goodness. Randolph's name has been thrown out for managerial jobs more often than Ben Affleck changes girlfriends. Randolph has been interviewed more often than Ashley Simpson post-SNLó"He said last month he had interviewed unsuccessfully in the past for 11 or 12 managerial openings."

Randolph had basically been used as a means to fulfill MLB's very low minority hiring requirements, that is that at least one minority candidate is interviewed. I always thought that they wouldn't lead to a minority manager being hired. I even thought the Mets were just fulfilling their obligations by interviewing Randolph. But if the minority requirements had anything to do with Randolph being hired, then I have to admit it served a purpose. Also, I have often criticized Omar Minaya as a GM, but if he made the right decision her.

Contrast the Mets move after looking to interview former Met manager Bobby Valentine, with the Phils' apparent decision today to hire Charlie Manuel after inexplicably interviewing former Phillie manager Jim Fregosi. Manuel was the heir apparent for about a year, after he was hired as a special consultant and Larry Bowa understudy.

Manuel was Jim Thome's longtime batting instructor so I guess that's why he got the nod even after surprise candidate Jim Leyland threw his hat in the ring, that and the fact that he is reportedly a good company man. GM Ed Wade was sick and tired of dealing with Larry Bowa's disciplinary issues. So who cares if the Phils get stuck with the second coming of Danny Ozark? Manuel is the man who coined such gems as:

"Thatís whatís good about this game, especially when the season starts, it seems like thereís a lot of other days left."

"There were times we were so loose I thought we were serving beer and pizza in the dugout."

"I donít know. I didnít sleep with him." When he was asked C.C. Sabathia actually injured his back after a poor night's sleep as he claimed.

And the ever popular:

"There's no pressure in baseball. Pressure is when the doctor is getting ready to cut you, take your heart out, and put it on a table."

And they say he's a great communicator. Oh yeah, that's the final reason the Phils hired him to be a counterpoint for the great Bowa whose players would refuse to high-five on their way to the dugout. It's the classic good cop/bad cop approach.

Sure, why look for a good candidate when you can just make a laundry list of your last manager's faults and pick up some previously owner manager who lacks those faults? Who cares if they have no other qualifications? We're the Phils anyway: nobody expects us to win anyway.

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