Matthew Cerrone: The Mets just dropped two of three to the NL East-leading Nationals, they’re 9-11 since the All Star break, seven games under .500 and eight games back in the loss column for a playoff spot. They have 47 games left in the season.
They’ll need to 34-13 to make it to October.
However, the more likely scenario is more of the same and finishing around 78 wins. This would be a few more wins than last year, but roughly the number as when Sandy Alderson and Terry Collins took over.
Nevertheless, the Mets appear on the verge of announcing a contract extension for Alderson beyond his 2015 option (Newsday, Aug. 7). And Collins, who signed an extension a year ago, is under contract through next season for roughly $1 million (MLB.com, Aug. 8), with a team option for 2016.
“At this point, Collins deserves the rest of the season,” says columnist Mike Vacarro (NY Post, Aug. 8), though he feels Terry may be better served next season in a player development role like he had with the Mets before becoming their manager.
I’m beginning to tilt toward Vaccaro’s thinking, even though I don’t necessarily think the losing is Terry’s fault. At the very least, I’d like to learn more about Wally Backman, as well as other possible managerial replacements that could be available this winter.
Look, I like Terry’s energy. He seems to be a smart baseball guy who knows the game and is supposedly great with motivating young kids. However, if the Mets are going to continue to win games on the margins (given the type of team Alderson is building) they’re going to need a much better tactician at the helm, not just a motivator. And speaking of his “motivational skills,” I’m concerned with the amount of lackadaisical play of a late. The team looks hurried, often unfocused, like they’re pressing and down.
Yes, I’m strictly using the eye-test. And I don’t know exactly what is going on inside their heads. I suppose I could also be projecting on to the team my own internal fight with apathy. In years past, I was far more trusting of how the players and roster were being managed. However, after a possible sixth-straight losing season, with a playoff run seemingly impossible, and with a roster and pitching on the verge of being very good, it’s time to start paying more attention to the people in charge.