In his new book, The Yankee Way: Playing, Coaching, and My Life in Baseball, Willie Randolph says his 2007 Mets team didn’t know how to win >> Read more about Randolph’s book.
“I don’t think they had the chemistry of the championship teams I played on in the late ’70s or the chemistry of the Core Four,” he wrote (ESPN, May 9). “Guys got along and had fun for the most part, but I don’t think they all knew how to win. I know for a fact that as the season played out it became clear that we had some areas of weakness, particularly in the pitching staff, that proved too tough to overcome.”
The Mets were 302-253 (.544) under Randolph, who led the team to their only NL East title in 25 years. They have a .474 winning percentage since he was fired.
“I wasn’t happy about the decision and felt then, much as I do today, that if given the opportunity, my staff and I could have contributed to the kind of sustained excellence that the Braves and Yankees had enjoyed,” Randolph wrote about being let go by Omar Minaya.
In April, 77 percent of 7,000 voters on MetsBlog said they currently have a favorable view of Randolph, who was fired during the 2009 season.
Matthew Cerrone, Lead Writer
I still think he’d be a good manager some place. He was so smart and passionate. He loves the game. New York just wasn’t the right place for him, not Queens, not the Bronx. He’s too connected here, he knows too much, he knows the experience, pressure, media expectations, etc., and he always struck me as way too paranoid and self-aware to succeed in this specific spotlight. As a player, he was never the main guy. As manager, he was…
The thing is, he just wanted to coach his team, throw batting practice and win games. Interviews, multiple pre-game press conferences, deflecting attention from players to himself, a dozen reporters with a dozen agendas, etc., it clearly was just a gigantic nuisance for him. I’m sure it is for most managers. This is why people say Clint Hurdle took the job in Pittsburgh and didn’t entertain the Mets. Willie didn’t seem to handle it well when the team started losing. It’s a shame. I’d love to see him get another shot some place, hopefully in a quieter market.