June 17, 2008

This Better Be Another Ambien Hallucination

So, sometimes there are advantages to being an insomniac. It's 3:18 AM, and the following press release from the Mets just showed up in my inbox:

METS NAME JERRY MANUEL INTERIM MANAGER

OBERKFELL, WARTHEN, AGUAYO JOIN COACHING STAFF

ANAHEIM, Calif., June 17, 2008 – The New York Mets today named Jerry Manuel interim manager, replacing Willie Randolph. Manuel, in his fourth season with the Mets, had been bench coach since 2006. The Mets also named Ken Oberkfell, Luis Aguayo and Dan Warthen to the coaching staff. Rick Peterson and Tom Nieto have been relieved of their coaching duties.

Mets General Manager Omar Minaya will hold a briefing with the media Tuesday, June 17 at 2:00 P.M. PT (5:00 P.M. ET) in the media room at Angel Stadium. Mets Manager Jerry Manuel will meet with the media immediately thereafter.

Because nothing says "I'm proud of the decision I just made" like announcing it at 3:18 in the morning!

Okay... I have a number of questions here, all of which fall under the broader umbrella of "What the fuck are the Mets doing?"

First of all, why would you send this out literally in the middle of the night? Because everyone sane and normal is asleep, there is no mention of this story on mets.com, espn.com, the NYTimes, MetsBlog, or anyplace else I've seen so far, leading me to wonder if I am perhaps just losing my mind. This may be the first time in my entire life I actually break a news story (well, if you can consider publishing the contents of a press release to be "breaking a news story") not related to funny names, at-bat songs, or facial hair.

But honestly, late hour aside, I find the timing of this completely bewildering. Why would you fire Willie Randolph NOW, after a win, at a time when the Mets have won four of their last six games, and when by most accounts Randolph was handling the intense pressure very well? If Omar Minaya and/or the Wilpons weren't actually waiting to see how the team performed before making a decision, what the hell were they waiting for? Why not fire him weeks ago, or indeed at the end of last season? At the very least, why make Randolph and his coaches fly to California first, if nothing he did there was going to make a difference? Why put him and the team and the fans and the beat writers through weeks and weeks of this if, as now seems clear, they were going to fire him no matter what?

Yeesh. What a mess.

Maybe something happened in the last day or two that I'm not aware of. Otherwise, this has to be one of the most incompetently handled personnel decisions since the days of George Steinbrenner vs. Billy Martin.

...Ah, there we go. The story is up on Mets.com. They managed to get it up before 4 AM, too -- classy!

10 comments:

Emma said...

Note that while it turns out Peter Abraham at LoHud did beat me by a good 20 minutes, I actually had this story before the New York Times. Now there's a sentence I'll almost certainly never be able to write again.

And on that note, if you thought the Mets front office was getting bad press before this, just wait. I can only imagine the beat writers are going to be royally pissed off at the timing of this -- I certainly would be.

Count Chockula said...

nothing wrong being up this late.

I rarely check email at night.

then again, you hear/read about people addicted to email, so much so, they take a Blackberry to the bathr4oom.

count chockula said...

whatz up with your clock?

pete's post says 3:25 AM while your post says 2:18 AM.

And your story is much better than the Post's, which simply has two lines attached to their breaking news banner.

http://www.nypost.com/seven/06162008/sports/mets/willie_randolph_fired_115856.htm

Emma said...

Yeah, I'm not sure what's going on with Blogger's internal clock -- it would have been a neat trick for me to get this up an hour before the press release was even sent out. I actually posted sometime around 3:45.

What I love about that Post story is their use of the classic tabloid phrase "the Post has learned." Yes, you learned it because the team's PR department sent you an email. I've really got to remember to start using that one more often...

Jason said...

what a bunch of wussies.

kapnasty said...

I never thought this could happen but the Wilpons just made the Dolans and Steinbrenners look classy? Damn almost vomited in my mouth just writing that, but it is true.

Emma said...

Now, now -- let's be fair. The Wilpons are still a couple of sexual harassment lawsuits, an intern sex scandal, and an incident of ambiguous attempted blackmail away from the level of the Dolans.

Still, if they work hard and remain determined, I really think they could get there in 2009...

perpetualmemoryloss said...

That is definitely true, but Mike Vaccaro on SNY just basically agreed with me, and said that this was something that James Dolan wouldn't do.

count chockula said...

great cover for wed morning

http://tinyurl.com/4rs4lo

count chockula said...

PS Jon Stewart spent the first five minutes skewering the Mets, Tuesday night.

way to go guys!