How much of the fault lies with the embattled Met manager?
Terry Collins is a lame duck. The Mets’ manager has been repeatedly denied a contract extension as the front office waits to see what he can do with this team. The problem is, they haven’t given him much to work with.
The 2013 New York Mets have more question marks than assets, and seem to have an unlimited number of ways to lose a baseball game. With every loss, Collins’ job becomes less secure. How much of the blame should be put on the manager?
The Case for Collins:
His players are bad. The Mets have some strengths and some promising youngsters, but overall, the team needs more talent. The bullpen is horrible, the outfield is weak, there is no speed, and Terry has gotten nothing so far out of “slugger’ Ike Davis.
His GM and his owners have done very little to help him, asking him to win now while trading away Cy Young Winners for prospects and passing up on Free Agents to preserve draft picks. It is unfair to expect a playoff appearance from a team of such low caliber. Despite a lack of talent, Collins’ squad has kept almost every game close.
The Case against Collins:
He doesn’t win games. He never has. A quick look at his stats shows that he has never surpassed 85 wins in his 8 full seasons as a skipper, and he has only won 76 games a year in his first two years in New York. The weakness of his roster is not an excuse.
The Orioles, Athletics, and Nationals all earned surprising playoff births last year and Collins should be held to the same standard. His players have tuned him out, refusing to make simple adjustment and making the same mistakes over and over again (Ike Davis is a prime example).
The front office does not have his back and the fans clamor for Wally Backman. He makes questionable decisions almost every night, seemingly determining his bullpen usage by picking names out of a hat. The other day, he called for an intentional walk with a 1-2 count. He has had more than 2 years to get things going, and the team has been uncompetitive for nearly all of his tenure.
If the front office wants to judge Terry based on wins and losses alone, they must first acknowledge that they have given him very little to work with. But if Collins has lost the ability to reach his players, he cannot be the manager. Collins is a lame duck who will most likely be targeted as a scapegoat at the season’s end (or sooner).
The Mets should keep Collins if he can lead the Mets to a 500 season. They should look elsewhere if he cannot. Some of the criticism against him may be unjustified. But at the end of the day, a manager who does not win games cannot expect to have any job security.
What are YOUR expectations for Terry? How should the Mets handle the situation? Let us know in the comments!