FIRE JOE MORGAN: Oh, Murray Chass, You Old Devil!


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Friday, May 06, 2005


Oh, Murray Chass, You Old Devil!

I knew you'd write something stupid, you old fart of a washed-up, retarded NY Times baseball reporter!

And here it is:

The explanation is so obvious, it's difficult to understand why no one has thought of it. The Yankees are enduring their worst start to a season in the 10-year Joe Torre era, and one person who had been with the Yankees for that entire era is missing this year. Instead of helping Torre catapult the Yankees into another dominant lead in the division, Willie Randolph is managing the Mets - and doing a first-rate job at it.

...[Yesterday's] 7-5 victory over Philadelphia improved the Mets record to 15-14, including 12-11 in their division. The Yankees, after losing to Tampa Bay by 6-2 last night, had an 11-18 record, including 9-14 in their division.

Okay. The reason the Yankees are struggling, the reason they're 11-18, is because of the absence of WILLIE RANDOLPH?

The former bench coach?

Not an aging line-up. Not Bernie Williams, Jorge Posada, Tino Martinez, Ruben Sierra, and Tony Womack being terrible hitters. Not Randy Johnson being injured after a sub-par start. Not Jaret Wright being a $21 million mistake, and also being injured. Not Carl Pavano and Mike Mussina being mediocre. Not Tom Gordon and Paul Quantrill being terrible, or Tanyon Sturtze being terrible and also injured. Not any of these things.

The reason they are struggling is because they didn't retain Willie Randolph.

Their bench coach.

Who, for the record, is a shitty manager. 15-14 is no great shakes. It's about right for that team. A team that added Carlos Beltran and Pedro Martinez in the off season.

Now read this, from the same article (it's long, but worth reading):

"Consider what Randolph did yesterday. In a move calculated to test his other players and learn something about his team, he took his hottest hitter out of the lineup and won without him. Cliff Floyd, with a 20-game hitting streak, longest in the major leagues this season, had been carrying the Mets, leading the team with a .391 batting average, 8 home runs, 25 runs batted in, a .701 slugging percentage and a .443 on-base percentage.

Take that bat out of the lineup when the Mets are trying to snatch every victory they can get? What kind of a rookie move is that?

Randolph, however, knows that the Mets can't rely on Floyd to produce that kind of offense all season. Even if Floyd were to remain hot for the next five months, which we know he will not, the Mets would need other hitters - Mike Piazza, Mike Cameron, David Wright - to contribute for them to win consistently. So Randolph quietly put the challenge before Floyd's teammates, and they responded.

Piazza, batting .198 when the game began, slugged four hits, including a three-run home run that turned out to be the decisive blow. Wright socked a tie-breaking two-run double. Cameron, who had missed the first 28 games with a wrist injury, began his season by drilling a pair of doubles.

Floyd watched it all from the bench. So did Randolph.

"I'm looking at the long haul," Randolph said afterward. "The guy's in a nice little groove, but I think it's more important to look at the big picture. One guy isn't going to carry us and do everything for us. I came in feeling this way and thinking this way, and I'm not going to change."

He did not want to "try to milk him for every little thing because he's in a streak," Randolph said of Floyd, adding, "It's more important what he's going to do the next few weeks and month."

Randolph didn't say that by resting Floyd he was seeking to learn something about his other players, but that was what he had in mind. It was a bold move for a rookie manager, one that could have backfired if the other hitters had not met the unspoken challenge. But they did, and that was the point.

Oh my God. This is a good managerial move? Sitting your hottest player? Maybe if he just wanted him to get a day of rest, fine, whatever. But Chass states authoritatively that this is not the reason Randolph did it. It was to test the mettle of the other gus on the team? Whaaaat?

And then Randolph says: "The guy's in a nice little groove, but I think it's more important to look at the big picture. One guy isn't going to carry us and do everything for us. I came in feeling this way and thinking this way, and I'm not going to change."


What does that mean? What is the "big picture?" Why not keep him in the line-up to help the other guys feel less pressure? And does anyone really think that Mike Piazza had four hits yesterday because Cliff Floyd wasn't in the line-up? (They were playing the Phillies. A bad team with a bad pitching staff.) What kind of insane sense does that make?

Murray Chass and Willie Randolph. A match made in heaven.


posted by Unknown  # 6:34 PM
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