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Sunday, February 27, 2005

N.Y. Daily News: Minaya fires back at ‘racist’ perception of Mets

Some of my best friends…are Met fans!

Omar Minaya, on the team being called “Los Mets”.....People who make those comments have a racial bent to their thinking. When you hear that, you ask yourself, ‘Do they make those comments when the staffs are all another race?’ But look, when you are doing something that has never been done before, people are going to make comments. A lot of times it’s part of being a minority.

Repoz Posted: February 27, 2005 at 02:42 PM | 35 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   1. fra paolo Posted: February 27, 2005 at 04:40 PM (#1168478)
Me gusta las oportunidades a hablar otros lenguas. Escucha amigos - no hay una lengua oficial en los Estados Unidos.
   2. fra paolo Posted: February 27, 2005 at 04:41 PM (#1168477)
Me gusta las oportunidades a hablar otros lenguas. Escuchan amigos - no hay una lengua oficial en los Estados Unidos.
   3. fra paolo Posted: February 27, 2005 at 04:44 PM (#1168480)
Caramba - un doble! (Y en los teclados de PCs, como se pone acentes? Donde esta mi iBook?)
   4. Шĥy Posted: February 27, 2005 at 04:49 PM (#1168482)
Anyone see this article in the Daily News?

"We thought that without Carlos the Mets were a fourth-place club and we thought that with Carlos they were still a fourth-place club," Sloane said.

All I have to say is that Leiter, Delgado, and Sloane can all have fun rotting on their 78 win team.
   5. thedad01 Posted: February 27, 2005 at 04:55 PM (#1168483)
Mon dieu! This kind of reporting is so tiresome.

I will be "mucho" happier when the games begin and I can read of how many runs a team scored rather than the ethnic background of the player that scored them.

Do reporters actually know anything about the sport they cover? All they ever seem to report is the office gossip.
   6. Cowboy Popup Posted: February 27, 2005 at 04:56 PM (#1168484)
"Omar Minaya had dramatically altered the face of the Mets in one winter, from Al Leiter and John Franco to Pedro Martinez and Carlos Beltran"

That's a pretty sweet change, leave it to someone to complain about it.
   7. Too Much Coffee Man Posted: February 27, 2005 at 05:20 PM (#1168494)
JIF,
I'm not sure who you are suggesting is complaining. Perhaps those who whisper on the message board?

I did not see any objections raised by the writer, in fact, he concludes that it's a "reasonable assumption" that the Mets would have gone after Martinez and Beltran simply because they were the most attractive free agents on the market.

For the most part, the article was more factual or descriptive than anything else. What was interesting to me was not that the Mets have added a few more Latino players, but that they have diversified their front office and baseball staff as much as they have. I'm guess that distinguishes them more from other teams then 3 key Latino contributors on their squad.
   8. SG Posted: February 27, 2005 at 05:27 PM (#1168497)
People who make those comments have a racial bent to their thinking.

This is a very perceptive statement by Minaya IMO. The people who are talking about Minaya's moves as possible indications of bias are most likely biased themselves to a certain extent.
   9. Cowboy Popup Posted: February 27, 2005 at 05:32 PM (#1168498)
"I'm not sure who you are suggesting is complaining. Perhaps those who whisper on the message board?"

Well isn't the article about people complaining that the team is becoming too hispanic? Maybe complaining isn't the right word, but there are some in NY who are apparently dissatisfied with the new players on the Mets. I wasn't thinking of anyone on this message board, or anyone in particular, I was just responding to the first few paragraphs, about people being worried the Mets aren't going to be white enough.
   10. I Love LA (OFF) Posted: February 27, 2005 at 05:36 PM (#1168500)
Man, Alois sounds bitter, huh? IMHO, telling Leiter to **** off was one of Minaya's best moves. So far, I haven't heard of any Met fan who's been dissapointed by that move.

As for the changes in the front office and baseball staff, I'm not sure why teams haven't done this before. I mean, if you were running a company and forty percent [including some of your very best] of your employees were Hispanic, wouldn't you make sure to have some Spanish-speaking personnel in place to make them feel comfortable and presumably perform better? But forget about feeling comfortable, how about just protecting your investment? Over the last couple of years, the Mets have had a lot of trouble with Hispanic players not being able to communicate with the head trainer. That, in part, was the reason why Jose Reyes and Vic. Zambrano got injured last year.
   11. Oggman Posted: February 27, 2005 at 05:52 PM (#1168507)
When you hear that, you ask yourself, ‘Do they make those comments when the staffs are all another race?’

Maybe he never read the "White Jays" article by Geoff Baker (and subsequent defense articles by Richard Griffin).
   12. Most Favored Haitian Status Posted: February 27, 2005 at 06:00 PM (#1168509)
That, in part, was the reason why Jose Reyes and Vic. Zambrano got injured last year.

Didn't Vic. Zambrano get injured because we traded Phenom for him a week after he had felt a twinge in his elbow in TB? I mean, wasn't he already injured?
   13. I Love LA (OFF) Posted: February 27, 2005 at 06:07 PM (#1168516)
Well, IIRC, there have been a lot of people who thought Minaya was targeting players according to their race/heritage and not their talent. Obviously, this was more evident in Met message boards, but I think it happened everywhere, even here. I know I did it early in the offseason [especially when Minaya traded Stanton for Heredia] and I know some people kept criticizing Omar for doing just that even after the Pedro and Beltran signings.
   14. I Love LA (OFF) Posted: February 27, 2005 at 06:14 PM (#1168521)
Man, reading back on old threads is fun! Here are some of the comments I made on Dec. 3 last year:

I'm sorry guys, but Minaya so far looks like a terrible GM. Frankly I can't think of a single reason why I shouldn't classify him as incompetent. Oh yeah, did I mention? Rumours in the Dominican are that the Mets already offered a contract to Moises Alou. ####, this is going to be a terrible offseason.

Oh Omar, forgive me for doubting you.

In other news, the team announced its decision to replace their generic "Catch the Energy" slogan with the more "culturally sensitive" and ethnic "Sucky Domicans R' Us." The move which comes on the heels of the naming of the first Hispanic GM in team history, is designed to attract NY's large Dominican population.

I thought that was pretty hilarious. Nobody else thought so though.
   15. Most Favored Haitian Status Posted: February 27, 2005 at 06:21 PM (#1168523)
In other news, the team announced its decision to replace their generic "Catch the Energy" slogan with the more "culturally sensitive" and ethnic "Sucky Domicans R' Us." The move which comes on the heels of the naming of the first Hispanic GM in team history, is designed to attract NY's large Dominican population.

I think saying "replace generic "Catch the Energy" with "Catch the Henergy" would be pretty funny too.
   16. fables of the deconstruction Posted: February 27, 2005 at 07:04 PM (#1168541)
Oh Omar, forgive me for doubting you.

Off,

I don't think you were necessarily alone on your feelings regarding Minaya. Quite a few of the Mets fans here were, shall we say, upset that they were going to see a repeat of "Omar la Montréal." I stated a couple times that the situations and resources were diametrically opposed. Minaya is intelliegent enough to realize that and the Mets opportunity gives him a chance to prove it. (As long as Freddie and Son don't interfere) That he has already done an excellent job of changing the 'face' of the Mets this offseason should be considerable proof. You fans have done a 180° turnaround since the despair at last season's trading deadline. I'm not as sanguine as you all as a group regarding the Mets ability to 'contend' this season but they will compete and they will be improved. My Mets Hex could be in jeopardy...! ;-) ...

-----------
trevise :-) ...
   17. CrosbyBird Posted: February 27, 2005 at 08:01 PM (#1168619)
Part of the problem is also one of a too-broad category. Minaya signed a whole bunch of Latino players, true, but he signed Martinez from the DR, Beltran from PR, Cairo and Galarraga from Venezuela, etc.

You can look at the roster and see a lot of Dominicans, but Reyes, Diaz, and Fortunado were all here before Minaya's reign began. Zambrano had been acquired before Minaya as well.

If you view the Met players by country of origin instead of the categories of "Latin player," "Asian player," "American player," they just look like a nice diverse team. Korean, Japanese, Dominican, Puerto Rican, Venezuelan, and American.

If a slogan is really necessary (I hate them), something that plays off the diversity of the team and the diversity of NY wouldn't be a bad place to start.
   18. Guy LeDouche Posted: February 27, 2005 at 08:22 PM (#1168654)
"If you view the Met players by country of origin instead of the categories of "Latin player," "Asian player," "American player," they just look like a nice diverse team. Korean, Japanese, Dominican, Puerto Rican, Venezuelan, and American."


White people get lumped together all the time, but if you want to put a happy face on it, go nuts!
Go ahead and break it down by dialect!
   19. Benji Posted: February 27, 2005 at 09:53 PM (#1168744)
I don't know exactly where the Mets will finish this year. but they will beat out the Marlins. I heard McKeon on the radio bragging about the big help hguys like Todd "BP" Jones were going to be. Jack, feel free to put him in whenever you face the Mets! Then he said how Beckett and Burnett are so lucky to have Al Leiter around. Yeah, like Kazmir and Melvin Mora were. And baseball expertise from a dick like Sloane, well, consider me illuminated by him. When someone is dumb enough to hire Steve Phillips again (and we all know somebody will, because he's so brillianty on ESPN) he can bring Sloane with him.
   20. CrosbyBird Posted: February 27, 2005 at 10:16 PM (#1168758)
White people get lumped together all the time, but if you want to put a happy face on it, go nuts!

You mean we don't distinguish between Canadian players like Larry Walker and American players like Mark McGwire? :)

A happy face? I don't put any face on it at all. Pretty much every move Minaya has made this offseason is a positive one. So far, I haven't seen him make any more that could reasonably be considered to favor a Latin player over a more talented white player, except possibly the Stanton deal (which was also a partial salary dump). And Stanton was pretty much done as a Met... there was no way he was staying, and very little that anyone would have been willing to trade for him.

Maybe we can argue that Drew would have been a better fit than Beltran, but that's a hard sell. Drew is awfully fragile.
   21. Benji Posted: February 27, 2005 at 10:29 PM (#1168765)
I'm greedy enough to have wanted Beltran and Drew, but I think the right decision was made.
   22. 6 - 4 - 3 Posted: February 27, 2005 at 10:50 PM (#1168776)
Yep, the Mets definitely shot themselves in the foot by letting their new minority GM load up the team with "his people." New York would have been much better off saving some money by getting Steve Finley and Derek Lowe, while preserving the caucasian homogeny that is synomynous with New York City.
   23. Шĥy Posted: February 27, 2005 at 10:54 PM (#1168781)
I was always upset that Minaya showed no interest in Drew. Beltran had always been a longshot yet Minaya was never in the mix for Drew. The Mets could have signed Drew and then could have dumped Floyd to get Beltran. This could have been afforded considering the money that was offered to Delgado.
   24. 6 - 4 - 3 Posted: February 27, 2005 at 11:03 PM (#1168791)
I can understand a team not wanting to commit to five years, $55M to a player with Drew's injury track record. I don't agree with it, but I can understand the aversion to perceived risk, especially when the same team still owes an injury-prone outfielder $6.5M for each of the next two years.

As for dumping Floyd, did they ever actually have a deal that wouldn't have required them to either pay a significant amount of his salary or take on an equally bad contract?
   25. Indiana Bob Posted: February 28, 2005 at 12:01 AM (#1168852)
I could care less the race of players signed by a GM. I care of on how good a signing it is for the team based on their budget. Minaya has spent a lot of money. I do not think any of the signings made by Minaya were particularly good for the dollars spent except for maybe Cairo. He spent way too much for Beltran (not that great of a hitter) and Pedro (declining fast). I know about needing to sell the cable network, but a winning team is the best sell. I think a signing of Delgado (4 yearss @ $52), Clement (3 years at $25.5), and Odalis Perez (3 years @ $24) would have been much better than the Beltran/Benson/Pedro deals and would have money left over to spend elsewhere.

name/age/years/dollars
Carlos Beltran, CF 27 7 $119,000,000
Kris Benson, SP 30 3 $22,500,000
Miguel Cairo, 2B 30 1 $900,000
Mike DeJean, RP 34 1 $1,150,000
Pedro Martinez, SP 33 4 $53,000,000
   26. Rob Base Posted: February 28, 2005 at 12:10 AM (#1168860)
He spent way too much for Beltran (not that great of a hitter) and Pedro (declining fast).

Certainly a supportable, clear-eyed, and unbiased view. Nice work!
   27. Шĥy Posted: February 28, 2005 at 12:19 AM (#1168871)
He spent way too much for...Pedro (declining fast)

What evidence is there that Pedro is declining fast? One relatively bad year? Pedro's biggest problem last year was facing the Yankees and Orioles, which won't be a problem for him anymore. She Stadium is suited very well for him and he will be playing in front of a great defense. I would be surprised if Pedro posts an ERA above 2.8.

Delgado (4 yearss @ $52)

They offered him more money than that.
   28. Sam M. Posted: February 28, 2005 at 03:10 AM (#1169262)
Leiter Injured, Announces Retirement

AP (Miami) - Florida Marlins' left-hander Al Leiter, in his first season with the club, announced his retirement today from a hospital bed in Miami. Leiter was taken to the emergency room after being hit in the ear by a vicious line drive off the bat of Met third baseman David Wright. Leiter was taken from the field on a stretcher.

In hs statement, Leiter noted, "That was the 418th consecutive cutter I threw that inning. All my career, I've been able to get hitters to foul that pitch off. As soon as Wright hit it on the nose and nearly took my head off, I knew I was washed up, and it was dangerous for me to remain out there, defenseless. I mean, as big an ass as I am, with hitters able to smash my best pitch right back at me, I'd be maimed or dead inside a week. So I'm finshed."

For his part, Wright was quoted as expressing nothing but admiration for the ex-Met. "Al was a big part of this franchise for a long time, and I'm glad he's going to be OK," Wright told t New York Times. "I wish him well in his retirement."

Sources close to the Mets, however, said that the second-year phenom told Mets' skipper Willie Randolph in the dugout, "That one was for Scott." The "Scott" to whom Wright referred was not immediately identified.

Wright's line drive came as the culmination of a 9-run Mets' onslaught against Leiter, who recorded only four outs in the cataclysmic, career-ending effort. The Mets won the ballgame, 13-2, to stay in a tie for first with the Braves. The Marlins fell 17 games back, trailing even the Washington Nationals.
   29. Indiana Bob Posted: March 01, 2005 at 01:52 AM (#1171598)
He spent way too much for Beltran (not that great of a hitter) and Pedro (declining fast).

Certainly a supportable, clear-eyed, and unbiased view. Nice work!

Beltran batting RAR (runs above average per Baseball Prospectus) the last 3 years are 29/12/23. Very good offense for a CF. Defensively RAR the last 3 years 5/1/2. So he is slightly above average defensively. Total RAR for the last 3 years of 72.

For comparison, Andruw Jones, another very good CF had batting RAR for the last 3 years of 28/20/14 and fielding RAR of 16/15/8. Total RAR for the last 3 years of 101.

Would you give Sheffield 7 years at $119 and he seems to be more valuable than Beltran once you level it out for home parks?

Pedro Martinez SO/9 and BB/9 the last 4 years 11.7/10.4/9.6/8.6 and 1.5/1.4/2.1/2.2. Looks like slippage to me and it is probably going to get more slippery over a 4-year contract even if he doesn't have arm trouble.

I am ambivalent to the Mets and hate the Yanks so I don't think I am being bias.
   30. I Love LA (OFF) Posted: March 01, 2005 at 02:22 AM (#1171650)
Sorry to dissapoint you, but Pedro's K/9 last year was 9.41

As for Beltran, well, according to SLWTs, he is one of the 10 best players in baseball so needless to say I'm pretty happy that we got him. Did we overpay? Yeah sure, but who cares?
   31. Шĥy Posted: March 01, 2005 at 02:25 AM (#1171659)
Would you give Sheffield 7 years at $119 and he seems to be more valuable than Beltran once you level it out for home parks?

That is a completely ridiculous statement. Sheffield had a 63.4 VORP last year and Beltran had 74.5 VORP. Beltran is worth around 25 runs more than Sheffield on defense and probably ~5 runs for baserunning. It really is not even close.

Looks like slippage to me and it is probably going to get more slippery over a 4-year contract

Not as ridiculous as your other statement but still fairly stupid. In past seasons, Pedro had some of the best seaons ever. The Mets don't expect him to do that, but he will still be one of the best picthers in the MLB and a Cy Young favorite. Last year, his biggest problems were the Yankees and the Orioles who are now gone. Playing in Shea and without having to face the DH, I definately think his 2005 ZIPS projected ERA of 2.62 is reasonable; I don't see how anyone can complain about that.
   32. Indiana Bob Posted: March 01, 2005 at 04:10 AM (#1171920)
Sorry. Those are Baseball Prospectus's translated pitching K/9 and B/9. The trend remains the same.

That should have read Andruw Jones not Sheffield. The Mets will be better this year. I just don't think you got optimal results for the dollars spent.
   33. NTNgod Posted: March 01, 2005 at 04:14 AM (#1171928)
Last year, his biggest problems were the Yankees and the Orioles who are now gone.

I thought the biggest problem with Pedro was the uncertain state of his arm.

I have no idea what Pedro'll end up doing for the life of the contract, but it's good to know the Yankees & Orioles had some special mixture that caused Pedro arm problems.

It's amazing what 21st century technology can do :)
   34. Шĥy Posted: March 01, 2005 at 04:18 AM (#1171935)
That should have read Andruw Jones not Sheffield. The Mets will be better this year.

Anduw Jones had a 36.6 VORP last year and has been in decline for several years.

I just don't think you got optimal results for the dollars spent.

They signed the best FA pitcherand the best FA position player. It always best to sign stars then to distribute the money around to lesser players as you suggested.
   35. RCheli Posted: March 01, 2005 at 04:59 AM (#1172020)
Weren't there similar "complaints" last off-season about the Angels, that they were signing too many Latin players?

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