With Omar Minaya rumored to be in the running for the Angels job, we present for the first time at BP.com, our review of his tenure from Baseball Prospectus 2011.
If you had to script an end to the Omar Minaya era in Queens, you couldn't have outdone reality: Oliver Perez, the $12 million-a-year albatross in the Mets' rotation, pitching for the first time in a month on the last day of the season, promptly walked three straight batters to send the Mets home losers in extra innings. A sarcastic chant of “M-V-P” followed the first out that Perez recorded during the debacle, and illustrated how fed up the fanbase was—not just with Perez, but with everything the pitcher and his contract represented.
Perez embodies so much that was wrong with the mindset of the Mets’ previous administration under general manager Minaya. The Mets gave Minaya his first genuine GM job, since his mandate as the league-appointed guardian of the dying Montreal Expos had included overseeing a form of organizational euthanasia, as opposed to the involuntary manslaughter he could be convicted of for bringing the Mets' roster to its knees. While he had his successes in New York, there were far more misses, and they all came back to one fundamental and repeated problem.
New general manager Sandy Alderson is the right person to fix the dysfunctional Mets.
Last week, the Mets took a bold step away from four years of ever-increasing disappointment and organizational chaos by hiring Sandy Alderson to succeed Omar Minaya as their general manager. The soon-to-be-63-year-old Alderson, who spent 15 years as the GM of the Oakland Athletics, was by far the most experienced candidate in a field which also included former Diamondbacks GM Josh Byrnes, former Royals GM Allard Baird, White Sox assistant GM Rick Hahn, Dodgers assistant GM Logan White, and Blue Jays special assistant Dana Brown. Perhaps just as importantly, Alderson is the first Mets GM to ascend to the post from outside the organization since Frank Cashen in 1980. He is a fresh start for an organization in desperate need of one.
The deep Twins are rolling and are right on the White Sox' heels in the AL Central, along with other news and notes from the majors.
Keeping October 4 open is probably a good idea for the Twins and the White Sox. That is the day after the regular season ends, the date usually reserved, unless that pesky NFL and its Monday Night Football gets in the way, for one-game playoffs if they are necessary to break ties for division titles and wild-card playoff berths.
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SOMEHOW THIS PART OF THE YANKEE VICTORY PARADE HAS FADED FROM MY MEMORIES
"I knew I wasn't taking Tic Tacs. I knew it was something that could perhaps be wrong."
-Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez, during his press conference in spring training to address steroid allegations.
Plus Omargate, inductions into the Hall of Fame, and assorted news and views from around the game.
At the All-Star break, we looked at the limited number of teams who could clearly be defined as sellers and what they might be offering in the days leading up to the non-waiver trading deadline. The deadline is now just two days away, and the numbers of buyers still outweigh the sellers. That's because 18 of the 30 major league clubs are within five games of a playoff berth, which would seemingly mean they are buyers.
The controversy over who's been saying what to whom in New York doesn't obscure a problem with accepting responsibility.
If you're a student of Cold War politics, or perhaps just a fan of early R.E.M., Monday's Omar Minaya press conference announcing the termination of Mets Vice President of Player Development Tony Bernazard might have had a familiar ring to it. The moment came when Minaya deviated from his "I'm not going to get into the details" stance to accuse New York Daily News beat writer Adam Rubin of writing reports on Bernazard's inappropriate behavior because, "Adam, for the past couple of years, has lobbied for a player development position."
A workhorse named CC, Cashman takes responsibility for his own narrative, and off-season calculations from around the major leagues.
Dale Sveum understands the value in the pitching arm of ace CC Sabathia, and how the big left-hander is going to cash in on it this upcoming winter when he becomes eligible for free agency. "He's going to make more money than any pitcher in the history of the game," said the Brewers' interim manager. "It couldn't happen to a better person, either. He's as nice of a guy, for a superstar, that I've ever met in my 27 years in professional baseball. He's a very special person."
What's on Manny Acta's shelf, plus talking smack and giving praise in the Windy City.
The Washington Nationals' performance and luck this season would be enough to make a grown man curse, kick, or cry. Manny Acta, the Nationals' manager, admits that at one time he would have done all three with his team having a 30-50 record, (worst in the National League), and with the 3-4-5 hitters in the batting order all on the disabled list.
"I'm sure when I was younger I would have dropped a couple of f-bombs and got thrown out of a few games by now," Acta said. "I've come to realize, though, that getting kicked out of a game or tearing up the clubhouse isn't going to make your team better. It has nothing at all to do with performance on the field."
Willie Randolph wasn't the only manager fired this week, but the manner of his dismissal caused an uproar.
Nearly a week has passed since the Mets fired manager Willie Randolph, and egg is still being wiped off the organization's collective face. The Mets have been castigated inside and outside the industry for the way they handled the move, having Randolph take a cross-country flight from New York to Los Angeles after last Sunday's doubleheader with the Rangers at Shea Stadium, then dropping the ax on him after a win over the Angels.
Chien-Ming Wang's injury has ramped up rumors of a C.C. Sabathia move to the Bronx, plus other news and notes from around the game.
In the minds of some, the Indians are already sellers in the trade market. Reports are rife that the Yankees are going to make a big play to pry left-hander C.C. Sabathia--who is eligible for free agency at the end of the season--away from Cleveland to replace the injured Chien-Ming Wang at the top of their rotation.
However, the Indians aren't ready to write off 2008, at least not yet. That's despite the fact that Cleveland is 33-38 and 6½ games behind the first-place White Sox in the AL Central, and has a slew of key players on the disabled list, including right-handers Fausto Carmona and Jake Westbrook, designated hitter Travis Hafner, catcher Victor Martinez, and second baseman Josh Barfield, who was injured two days after being called up from Triple-A Buffalo to replace the struggling Asdrubal Cabrera.