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Friday, May 16, 2008

Billy Wagner rips Mets teammates for ducking media

In the old days…at least they used to play cards.

That undercurrent of discontent over some Mets ducking the media boiled over after Thursday’s game.

As reporters spoke with Billy Wagner after the Mets lineup failed to capitalize on Mike Pelfrey’s gem in a 1-0 loss to the Nationals at Shea Stadium, first about the upcoming Subway Series, then about Thursday’s game, Wagner wondered aloud why the closer was drawing attention.

Then he went Paul Lo Duca-esque, minus the racial component.

Wagner looked over toward the area of first baseman Carlos Delgado’s locker and blurted: “Someone tell me why the (expletive) you’re talking to the closer. I didn’t even play. They’re over there, not being interviewed. ... I got it. They’re gone. (Expletive) shocker.”

Repoz Posted: May 16, 2008 at 12:22 AM | 77 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: mets

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   1. Tony H. Posted: May 16, 2008 at 12:42 AM (#2782698)
Yeah, it's been a week or two since Billy Wagner last ripped a teammate, so it's about time for it to happen again...
   2. NTNgod Posted: May 16, 2008 at 12:42 AM (#2782699)
Newsday:
But Delgado did not make himself available to the media to talk about yet another 0-for-4 game, a few feeble whiffs and his .222 average. So Wagner took a swing. Later, during his regular appearance with Michael Kay on ESPN radio, Wagner said, "there needs to be other guys that are accountable," adding that air will get cleaned in the Bronx Friday: "I think that those guys will be talked to about how you need to stand there in the bad times rather than just stand there in the good times."
   3. Darren Posted: May 16, 2008 at 01:10 AM (#2782714)
Maybe the other players just got used to Wagner talking #### to the press and figured he enjoyed it.

Oh, and Randolph's a goner.
   4. NTNgod Posted: May 16, 2008 at 01:20 AM (#2782721)
Newsday blog: Wagner calls out teammates (again) on ESPN 1050
And for good reason. Billy Wagner, easily the most accessible player on the Mets, was not happy to be fielding most of the questions after today's 1-0 loss to the Nationals. The main reason? He didn't play in the game.

Luckily for The Michael Kay Show on ESPN 1050, the incident just happened to coincide with Wagner's regular Thursday appearance. Here's a transcript of the first five minutes of that interview, during which Wagner suggests there is a lack of "accountability" among some Mets.
...
KAY: Obviously I have to ask you what happened after the game. We’ve been told that you did not like the fact that everybody came to you to ask you questions and you kind of said where is everybody? People weren’t there. Tell us what happened there Billy?

WAGNER: Well, I mean, it gets to a point where, I didn’t even play today. I was not a participant in the game, and the guys that had participated were gone. I mean, we’re all upset, we’re unhappy with things that are going on, and how we’re playing, and I just felt like I hadn’t even played. I had no role in the game. David Wright’s always there, and the same guys are always there. But there needs to be other guys that are accountable. It gets a little old when the same people keep getting interviewed even when they don’t participate.
...
KAY: Last year there were similar complaints by Paul Lo Duca. Do you think it has anything to do with Latin players or anything like that?

WAGNER: I think it’s just certain guys. I don’t think it’s Latin or white or black. I don’t think it’s a color thing. I think it’s just as a whole there’s guys that need to stand there and take the bad with the good.
   5. TVerik - Dr. Velocity Posted: May 16, 2008 at 01:20 AM (#2782722)
Was Delgado ever a media gadfly?
   6. BTF's left-wing cheering section (formerly_dp) Posted: May 16, 2008 at 01:23 AM (#2782724)
Was Delgado ever a media gadfly?

IIRC, the media in Toronto liked him, but he took some hits for not being vocal enough on the field. That may have carried over into the post-game interviews, I don't know.

The Mets need to remember how to hit. This is getting embarrassing...
   7. Win one for Agrippa (haplo53) Posted: May 16, 2008 at 01:35 AM (#2782735)
I love it. It's the most entertaining thing that's happened this whole Mets season.
   8. RJ in TO Posted: May 16, 2008 at 01:35 AM (#2782736)
Was Delgado ever a media gadfly?


Not really. As dp notes, the media liked him, but he was never the go to guy for a big quote. He was polite enough to answer questions, and the press was largely polite enough to leave him alone. This desire to leave him alone unless he wanted to talk was also helped along when Richard Griffin ripped him in the Star for not running out a grounder, followed by Delgado going on the DL the next day with a knee injury which no one had asked him about.
   9. Neil Kinnock...Lord Palmerston! (Orinoco) Posted: May 16, 2008 at 03:35 AM (#2782823)
Oh, and Randolph's a goner.


ditto. The smoke and mirrors act has gone on long enough.
   10. Darren Posted: May 16, 2008 at 03:58 AM (#2782843)
I dunno whether he's smoke and mirrors or not, but this kind of stuff between players reflects really poorly on him. Looks like he's lost control of the club.

Here's a hint to Wagner on what he should say when he thinks he shouldn't be talking: "No comment."
   11. Old Matt Posted: May 16, 2008 at 04:35 AM (#2782864)
I'm fine with this. Just makes Willie look worse. And that's great.
   12. NTNgod Posted: May 16, 2008 at 04:39 AM (#2782866)
Unleash the NY columnists!

Newsday: Baumbach - Starting today, Mets' Randolph in line of fire
Today, for the first time, you can say it for real. Randolph's job has to be in jeopardy.

All that has gone wrong with this Mets season was on full display Thursday -- on the field, in the stands and in the clubhouse. It was a perfect crescendo of the sort of events that have led to their disappointing, underachieving start.

They suffered their third loss in four games to a team they should beat. Their offense was muted by a pitcher, Jason Bergmann, who entered the game with an 11.68 ERA. They made two critical baserunning mistakes in the final two innings, each of which resulted in a double play.

And the fans directed their daily venom at the manager, booing him as he walked back to the dugout after removing Mike Pelfrey in the eighth.
...
Then, when the Mets' awful day was almost complete, Billy Wagner colorfully admitted in his own way that this clubhouse isn't exactly full of campfires and singalongs.
   13. Robert in Manhattan Beach Posted: May 16, 2008 at 05:19 AM (#2782885)
Well, that was quite a loss today. Turning Bergman into Greg Maddux for seven, brainfarting their way out of the eighth, and horrible rotten bad luck in the ninth. Quite a page turner.
   14. 1k5v3L Posted: May 16, 2008 at 05:33 AM (#2782892)
Castillo trotting on the Wright pop up (and Wright moaning and ######## down the line); Reyes meandering on his way to 3b and getting tagged off by (his upside) Guzman; Beltran already ducking the media by the time Boone threw him out... it was a veritable thriller at Sheavilla tonight...
   15. Justin T's pasta pass was not revoked Posted: May 16, 2008 at 05:39 AM (#2782895)
The catch in the ninth by Willie Harris eclipses Reed Johnson's a couple weeks ago, IMO.

Best catch ever?
   16. Howie Menckel Posted: May 16, 2008 at 05:43 AM (#2782898)
Endy Chavez says hi
   17. schuey Posted: May 16, 2008 at 05:53 AM (#2782905)
Ron Swoboda says what about me.

Billy Wagner must be as giddy as Suzyn Waldman about getting paid to speak. Maybe someday I'll listen to Danny Aiello's nephew to hear him (A listener to TMKS on 1050! As rare as whales in the sahara!). Does he have a song to introduce him..like "Enter Sandman"?
   18. NTNgod Posted: May 16, 2008 at 06:00 AM (#2782906)
NY Daily News: Lupica - Basement Bombers vs. bickering Mets
This isn't all the manager's fault, because it never is in baseball. The Mets are still a game over .500. But they are also one game under .500 over their last 151 games. They begin to look like the kind of underachieving team that gets managers and coaches fired in sports all the time. And you know something else? It is the kind of underachieving team that doesn't allow Omar Minaya to think he's got a job for life, either.

Only a quarter of the baseball season has been played. Maybe the Marlins will run away with the National League East. They probably won't. The Phillies are pretty much where the Mets are and the Braves are where the Mets are. The Yankees aren't even as good as the Mets. But as Scott Schoeneweis, who used to go up against the Yankees in the American League, said Thursday, "Don't the Yankees always start this way and still make the playoffs?"
...
Willie Randolph better take a look at what Wagner said after Thursday's game, find out right now how much of a divide there might be in his clubhouse and on his team, and do something about it. He better get the attention of his shortstop - it suddenly seems laughable that one year ago we thought this kid was the most exciting player around - and his team better get on a real good rip, real soon.
   19. Russlan thinks deGrom is da bomb Posted: May 16, 2008 at 12:25 PM (#2782946)
There are better players on the Mets but it really does feel to me that this team's performance is most directly correlated to Reyes' performance.
   20. Freeballin' (Tales of Met Power) Posted: May 16, 2008 at 12:38 PM (#2782954)
Evan Roberts inadvertantly said something kind of spooky on the FAN yesterday. He said that if the Mets were to lose today [i.e., yesterday in the final game of the Nats series] and then get swept by the Yanks, Randolph might well be canned.

The Mets' record if that were to happen? 20-22.

Anybody see where this is going?

May 29, 1990 - 2 years removed from a disappointing NLCS Game 7 loss, the axe falls on Davey Johnson.

Only difference being that Davey was an excellent manager and Willie sucks donkey dick.
   21. Edmundo got dem ol' Kozma blues again mama Posted: May 16, 2008 at 12:44 PM (#2782958)
Reyes meandering on his way to 3b and getting tagged off by (his upside) Guzman

One of your good ones, levski. You are kind of a Dave Kingman when it comes to snarky Mets comments, lots of swings, lots of misses but an occasional OMG blasts out of the park.
   22. and Posted: May 16, 2008 at 01:06 PM (#2782967)
I can maybe see an argument for Beltran and Delgado, though from everything I've ever read about them, they really aren't the rah-rah leader type. But Reyes? Why should such a young player who just a couple of years ago was chastised for being immature be a leader? If he is, Wright certainly should be.

But, at the end of the day, Willie needs to have a bit more control.
   23. RB in NYC (Now Semi-Retired from BBTF) Posted: May 16, 2008 at 01:09 PM (#2782970)
Also, the media has decided--maybe rightly, maybe not--that the manner in which Reyes seems to interact with his teammates (Head Cheerleader, basically) is unacceptable. So he's kind of in a damned if you do, damned if you don't situation.
   24. Excel Hearts Choi Posted: May 16, 2008 at 01:12 PM (#2782975)
Beltran, Reyes and Delgado

Regardless of their race, these guys are heralded as impact, game changing players. So far, they have not lived up to this. I don't think leadership is always the "rah-rah" stuff. Accountability, however, is always a part of leadership. Even the younger players and quiet guys can step up and take their fair share of the blame. If this happens in front of reporters or behind closed doors does not matter.
   25. and Posted: May 16, 2008 at 01:14 PM (#2782977)
If this happens in front of reporters or behind closed doors does not matter.

It appears to matter to reporters.
   26. Harris Posted: May 16, 2008 at 01:14 PM (#2782978)
I'm quite certain that Pat Burrell is ecstatic that Billy's on another team.
   27. Excel Hearts Choi Posted: May 16, 2008 at 01:18 PM (#2782984)
It appears to matter to reporters.

Of course. They are too dependent upon the players/coaches/front office for quotes to meet the word limit for their stories.
   28. depletion Posted: May 16, 2008 at 01:26 PM (#2782989)
kevin: team chemistry is winning a bunch of games. Chemistry has to do with valence electrons, not locker rooms.

It seems that the Met hitters are not sufficiently prepared for each day's opposing pitcher. Either that or they just aren't as good as some of us figured.
   29. Slinger Francisco Barrios (Dr. Memory) Posted: May 16, 2008 at 01:32 PM (#2783000)
If Delgado was wondering what he was doing under that bus, he can just read this to know who threw him there.
   30. God can’t be all that impressed with Charles S. Posted: May 16, 2008 at 01:50 PM (#2783018)
The catch in the ninth by Willie Harris eclipses Reed Johnson's a couple weeks ago, IMO.

They're damn close, but I like the Johnson catch better because he was moving to the side and away from home plate. Harris was just moving to the side. Hard to argue with either one, though.
   31. Win one for Agrippa (haplo53) Posted: May 16, 2008 at 02:01 PM (#2783040)
Klaptrap:

Of course, it was easy handling the Mets in 2006, when they were crushing the National League. Back then, Willie's stoicism was cool, hip: all he had to do was write out the lineup card. But nothing has been the same since Game 7 of the NL Championship Series, and now Randolph doesn't have the motivational weapons to pull the '08 Mets out of this cesspool. Willie may think he's tough and understated like his idols, Frank Robinson and Billy Martin, but to the under-achieving Mets, the manager just seems out of touch.

Of course, all this could change, starting with a sweep of the equally-mediocre Yankees. But 39 games into the season, this is more than a slump or a run of bad luck. This is who the Mets are: soft and aloof and now divided. Randolph and Minaya are both running out of time.
   32. Chris Dial Posted: May 16, 2008 at 02:05 PM (#2783045)
For Mets fans, is this for real? Or is it just the hastily concocted conventional wisdom to explain their perceived underperformance?


The second thing.
   33. Stevis Posted: May 16, 2008 at 02:06 PM (#2783047)
Know your place, vet.
   34. Mr. Hotfoot Jackson (gef, talking mongoose) Posted: May 16, 2008 at 02:08 PM (#2783048)
Willie may think he's tough and understated like his idols, Frank Robinson and Billy Martin,


Quite possibly I'm missing something, but when I think of Billy Martin, the word "understated" never, ever comes to mind.
   35. Win one for Agrippa (haplo53) Posted: May 16, 2008 at 02:25 PM (#2783062)
http://www.amazinavenue.com/2008/5/16/518884/some-guys-have-all-the-luc

Eric Simon with some interesting stuff about the Mets' luck at the plate.
   36. bfan Posted: May 16, 2008 at 02:30 PM (#2783068)
well, this is 2 independant guys saying this, about a year apart, so maybe instead of blaming the messenger, maybe we should see if there is merit to guys ducking the media. It does seem odd to me that the guy who didn't even get in the game, through no fault of his own, has the press around his locker...
   37. Bad Doctor Posted: May 16, 2008 at 02:37 PM (#2783078)
Someone tell me why the (expletive) you’re talking to the closer.

I think he answered his own question quite emphatically here.
   38. Charter Member of the Jesus Melendez Fanclub Posted: May 16, 2008 at 02:41 PM (#2783080)
It does seem odd to me that the guy who didn't even get in the game, through no fault of his own, has the press around his locker...

How is that odd? The guy likes to run his yap and say stupid ####, so of course they gather around to listen.

I fully support any players who realize talking to the media is a big waste of time.
   39. rfloh Posted: May 16, 2008 at 02:55 PM (#2783085)
And, if it is legit, is Minaya guilty of signing every latino player out there, without respect to team chemistry?


Putting aside the chemistry issues for the moment, why are people still repeating this tired, lazy and false canard?

The farking idiot running his mouth in this article is not a latino. LoDuca is not latino. Omar passed on Ramon Hernandez, latino, to get Loduca. Schoeneweiss is not latino. Green, is not latino. Glavine is not latino. Maine is not latino. Minaya has acquired a bunch of non latino players, via trade or FA.
   40. Charter Member of the Jesus Melendez Fanclub Posted: May 16, 2008 at 02:56 PM (#2783086)
But they were all above-average salsa dancers.
   41. bfan Posted: May 16, 2008 at 03:06 PM (#2783099)
1. we are assuming facts not in evidence, which is that Wagner somehow attracted the media over there.

2. the media and stories is the biggest source of advertising for the product in the world and this media happens to be free, so while you might support the players who do not want to talk to the media, if you accept the notion that salaries have to be based on revenues, then a part of a player's job is to drive revenues. To take it to its logical conclusion, carlos Delgado puts money in his pocket because Billy Wagner talks to the media.
   42. RB in NYC (Now Semi-Retired from BBTF) Posted: May 16, 2008 at 03:12 PM (#2783105)
Minaya has, obviously, targeted talented latino players to constitute a significant portion of the top-end talent on the team. He paid big bucks for Delgado, Pedro and Beltran.

But, did he not consider leadership qualities in these players when he signed them? I remember Dan Duquette doing something similar when he assembled a team that had a very high level of top talent:
Given the "talent" on the team Minaya was taking over, it's hard to blame him for signing the best talent out there and sorting out the chemistry part later. If he waited to find players who were both great players and solid leaders then someone else might be sitting in his office by now.
   43. Mr. Hotfoot Jackson (gef, talking mongoose) Posted: May 16, 2008 at 03:26 PM (#2783119)
If he waited to find players who were both great players and solid leaders then someone else might be sitting in his office by now.


As opposed to (it's looking like) a few weeks from now?

OK, maybe the end of the season instead ...
   44. The usual palaver and twaddle (Met Fan Charlie) Posted: May 16, 2008 at 03:45 PM (#2783142)
Communal activities all function better when the group members aren't discordant and all are pulling in the same direction.


Right. Like the '72-'75 A's and the '76-'81 Yankees. Happy families, all...


PS -- Amazing how many non-Met fans can smell the snark chum.
   45. rfloh Posted: May 16, 2008 at 03:58 PM (#2783162)
You're missing the point.


What's your point? That "if it is legit, is Minaya guilty of signing every latino player out there, without respect to team chemistry?"

Because he's not.

Minaya has, obviously, targeted talented latino players to constitute a significant portion of the top-end talent on the team. He paid big bucks for Delgado, Pedro and Beltran.

But, did he not consider leadership qualities in these players when he signed them? I remember Dan Duquette doing something similar when he assembled a team that had a very high level of top talent: Nomar, Pedro, Manny. But none of those guys were real good at being team leaders and I thought the team underperformed. A scout in a pre-season annual noted, in the context of evaluating a teams chances for success (and I'm paraphrasing) "The Red Sox? I like their talent. But that's a strange group they have over there. I wonder if they'll really be able to pull it all together." It took guys like Schilling and Papi to take the burden off them. so I'm wondering if Minaya made the same mistake in being a bit too parochial in one area and neglecting another that may be just as important.


He also paid big bucks for the farking idiot running his mouth in this article, who's not a Latino. He also paid relatively big bucks for Schoeneweiss, $10.8M /3 for a LOOGY. He also specifically targeted LoDuca, not a Latino.

Also, he's stuck to the non Latino manager, when a Latino manager, namely Manny Acta would have been a much better choice.

Which non Latino player should Omar have targeted instead of Beltran? Which non Latino player should Omar have targeted instead of Pedro? Which Latino players have Minaya chosen over non Latinos?

If you want to say that Minaya did not consider chemistry when building the roster, fine.

If you OTOH, want to say that Minaya "is Minaya guilty of signing every latino player out there, without respect to team chemistry", please show some evidence that Minaya is targeting Latinos over non Latinos and that he is choosing Latinos over non Latinos.
   46. Eric J. Seidman Posted: May 16, 2008 at 04:04 PM (#2783170)
http://www.redlasso.com/ClipPlayer.aspx?id=3968eb80-4c20-4bee-ab4a-8d577064a6a8

That's a video of it for anyone interested.
   47. The usual palaver and twaddle (Met Fan Charlie) Posted: May 16, 2008 at 04:09 PM (#2783179)
And you're missing the point as well. There's a difference between disfunctionality and creative tension.


You're off your bird. Those squads had actual fistfights in the clubhouse. I'd say that swings more to dysfunction than "creative" tension.
   48. RB in NYC (Now Semi-Retired from BBTF) Posted: May 16, 2008 at 04:18 PM (#2783196)
I've been on teams before where teammates got in fistfights.
Was this during your time in the Army?
   49. The Essex Snead Posted: May 16, 2008 at 04:34 PM (#2783218)
I remember Dan Duquette doing something similar when he assembled a team that had a very high level of top talent: Nomar, Pedro, Manny. But none of those guys were real good at being team leaders and I thought the team underperformed. A scout in a pre-season annual noted, in the context of evaluating a teams chances for success (and I'm paraphrasing) "The Red Sox? I like their talent. But that's a strange group they have over there. I wonder if they'll really be able to pull it all together." It took guys like Schilling and Papi to take the burden off them.

Wait -- you're saying that the acquisition of 2nd star-quality pitcher and a 30-40 HR hitter pulled the Red Sox "all together" and fixed their CHEMISTRY ISSUES? Gee, and I thought the Duquette teams underperformed because they were top-heavy, gave regular PT to stiffs like Jose Offerman & Mike Lansing & Rey Sanchez & Dante Bichette, had no pitching depth (Paxton Crawford & Pete Schourek notwithstanding), and were continually undercut by the collective managerial greatness of Jimy Williams & Grady Little. Thanks for setting me straight!

Anyway, we should get back to the crux of this thread, which is:

1) Billy Wagner is an obnoxious dimwit.
2) the MSM loves Billy Wagner because he's an obnoxious dimwit.
3) Willie Randolph should be canned ASAP.
   50. The Essex Snead Posted: May 16, 2008 at 04:38 PM (#2783225)
And if the issue w/ the Mets is actually chemistry (& not Willie's roster management / spotty pitching / lack of production from Delgado & Beltran), then cutting lose that alabaster bastard Wags and his know-nothing clownass (or maybe having the manager do his damn job & set Wags' clownass straight) would fix that up real quick.
   51. Golfing Great Mitch Cumstein Posted: May 16, 2008 at 05:03 PM (#2783252)
1) Billy Wagner is an obnoxious dimwit.

He cannot be all bad, he is wearing a Patriots hat in the video
   52. The Essex Snead Posted: May 16, 2008 at 05:14 PM (#2783263)
Sorry, let me fix that:

1) Billy Wagner is an obnoxious dimwit and a bandwagon-humping frontrunner.
   53. rfloh Posted: May 16, 2008 at 05:17 PM (#2783267)
But he's contributing to, indeed seemingly exacerbating, the lack of chemistry problems.


Err, I'm not sure what you're saying. You're saying that Wagner is helping, or making the situation worse?
   54. Brian Posted: May 16, 2008 at 05:31 PM (#2783279)
I remember Dan Duquette doing something similar when he assembled a team that had a very high level of top talent: Nomar, Pedro, Manny. But none of those guys were real good at being team leaders and I thought the team underperformed. A scout in a pre-season annual noted, in the context of evaluating a teams chances for success (and I'm paraphrasing) "The Red Sox? I like their talent. But that's a strange group they have over there. I wonder if they'll really be able to pull it all together." It took guys like Schilling and Papi to take the burden off them.

Excellent point. I think the Mets should acquire Lance Berkman and Brandon Webb to help the clubhouse chemistry.
   55. David Wrightwing obstructionist Posted: May 16, 2008 at 05:40 PM (#2783289)
I must be one of the few Metfans that has no problem with this. So Billy Wagner is full of hot air, I don't see what is so bad about this one. Routinely getting grilled about the team's troubles when your performing well must get old. I hate to state the obvious but offensively the Latino players are the ones struggling. Reyes, Beltran and Delgado are the ones stinking up the joint. Hard to argue with the performance of Church or Schneider. Wright hasn't been his normal self but he hasn't been his April 07 self either.

Willie strikes me as a guy who routinely rips or gives no credit to his younger players(proven) and who walks on egg shells with his vets.
   56. Conor Posted: May 16, 2008 at 06:01 PM (#2783313)
Beltran has an OPS+ of 111 this year. He isn't stinking up the joint. Reyes is at 96; he's not stinking up the joint but not doing great. Delgado, on the other hand...
   57. The Essex Snead Posted: May 16, 2008 at 06:18 PM (#2783331)
Beltran has an OPS+ of 111 this year.

Reason #282 why the "plus" stats aren't the be-all and end-all in making a case: Beltran has only 3 HRs and a .426 slugging. Sure, he's walking a lot this year (27 so far), and that has value. But guess who's batted behind CB for half the season?
   58. bfan Posted: May 16, 2008 at 06:32 PM (#2783349)
"Accountability, however, is always a part of leadership."

Bingo and 10 bonus points for getting it right. In this case, no one is telling the offending players to be rah-rah types, but heck, how about hanging around and answering the tough questions and meeting with the media, which ultimately is somebody's job.
   59. David Wrightwing obstructionist Posted: May 16, 2008 at 06:35 PM (#2783352)
Beltran is barely outslugging Reyes who is carrying that .328 OBP. In 06 when we did dominate our division those 2 had outstanding years. Maybe Willie should move Beltran to 1 or 2 slot, drop Reyes to 2, hit Church 3 and Wright 4.

Or try anything new other than the Delgado/Church/Slappy flip-flop. He comes from the George Bush school of, "well there is no easy/quick fix".
   60. David Wrightwing obstructionist Posted: May 16, 2008 at 07:15 PM (#2783421)
I'm sure Willie just fears the attack of the NY media of he's panicing, but it might be time to panic. The band on the Titanic was brave and all but they also drowned.
   61. The usual palaver and twaddle (Met Fan Charlie) Posted: May 16, 2008 at 07:25 PM (#2783428)
But that's not the issue. The issue is: how does the team deal with the fistfights? or any other internal conflict. Does it just let the animosity fester unresolved until morale falls apart or do certain players step up and act as mediators and put everything in the rear view mirror?


On this, we agree.
   62. Conor Posted: May 16, 2008 at 07:30 PM (#2783433)
Reason #282 why the "plus" stats aren't the be-all and end-all in making a case: Beltran has only 3 HRs and a .426 slugging.


And a 370 OBP. The NL has a park adjusted slugging of 416 this year. He has the 5th best ZR of any CF in baseball this year, and he's in the top 10 in EQA. This is below par for a typical Beltran year, of course, and I fully expect him to get better, but I don't see how he is stinking up the joint.

Delgado, on the other hand, is certainly stinking up the joint.
   63. Mr. Hotfoot Jackson (gef, talking mongoose) Posted: May 16, 2008 at 07:46 PM (#2783443)
Wright hasn't been his normal self but he hasn't been his April 07 self either.


Yes, but he was my first pick for my fantasy team. The media, the fans & the players are all very aware of this, let me assure you.
   64. Sam M. Posted: May 16, 2008 at 08:32 PM (#2783494)
I wish Sam were heere to give his input. He's really pretty good when it comes to dissecting chemsitry issues.

Well, now. Let's see what I've got.

First, I agree to a large degree with Klapisch's take:

Back then, Willie's stoicism was cool, hip: all he had to do was write out the lineup card. But nothing has been the same since Game 7 of the NL Championship Series, and now Randolph doesn't have the motivational weapons to pull the '08 Mets out of this cesspool. Willie may think he's tough and understated like his idols, Frank Robinson and Billy Martin, but to the under-achieving Mets, the manager just seems out of touch.


If that is right -- or even right to a significant portion of the Mets' clubhouse -- then some of them are bound to react by trying to fill the void they perceive in Randolph's leadership/motivation. And who better (from his POV) to do that than Proven Veteran Leader™ . . . Billy Wagner???!!!

So one of two things is happening with Wagner. Either he's legitimately just popping off because, well, that's what Billy Wagner does. Or this is a calculated motivational move to piss off his teammates and (he hopes) in their anger get them to play better. Even a divided clubhouse is better than a lethargic one, could be what he's thinking. Now, if that's it, it shows the guy thinks with all the subtlety of his pitching style. I mean, to bring up an issue (who is talking to the press, and who isn't) that came up last year (when Lo Duca raised it) in a way that singled out the Hispanic players, and thus risk dividing the clubhouse on ethnic grounds (even though Wagner said he wasn't doing that and didn't mean only them) is about as stupid as I can imagine.

And remember this. It was what . . . two weeks ago or so that Randolph called Wagner into his office and told him that if he had something to say about a teammate to keep it within the team -- this after Wagner popped off about Ollie Perez hanging the bullpen out to dry. To once again slam his teammates to the media so soon after Randolph told him to cut it out? Wagner just basically told Randolph to go screw himself. He pretty much forces Randolph to do something or be totally humiliated with the rest of the team. If Randolph doesn't see that, his days are numbered in that clubhouse.
   65. David Wrightwing obstructionist Posted: May 16, 2008 at 08:44 PM (#2783516)
Ok Conor maybe I went a little extreme with Beltran and his defense I am not arguing. But he is stinking up the joint from the leftside of the plate 231/336/385.
   66. David Wrightwing obstructionist Posted: May 16, 2008 at 08:55 PM (#2783543)
Gef, fear not, the surest bet to come out of this malaise is Wright.
   67. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: May 16, 2008 at 09:15 PM (#2783558)
And remember this. It was what . . . two weeks ago or so that Randolph called Wagner into his office and told him that if he had something to say about a teammate to keep it within the team -- this after Wagner popped off about Ollie Perez hanging the bullpen out to dry. To once again slam his teammates to the media so soon after Randolph told him to cut it out? Wagner just basically told Randolph to go screw himself. He pretty much forces Randolph to do something or be totally humiliated with the rest of the team. If Randolph doesn't see that, his days are numbered in that clubhouse.
I forgot about that. This seems like the key point. Wagner is expressly challenging Randolph's authority, both over him and over the entire clubhouse.
   68. Raskolnikov Posted: May 16, 2008 at 09:18 PM (#2783560)
Am I the only one who was encouraged by the last two days? Yes, those were tough losses, but in the long run, if Vargas and Pelfrey can stabilize the back end of the rotation, that solves the flaw that killed us last year.

Willie's job is to figure out a way to put out a lineup that will score sufficient runs and to cobble together a competent bullpen. Getting rid of Sosa goes a long way towards the second part.

(Willie does need to find a way to shut Wagner up.)

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