According to Ken Davidoff of the New York Post, Wally Backman isn’t looking to take Terry Collins’ job as manager of the Mets, but his goal is definitely to manage in the big leagues.
For now, Backman is focused on what he’s being paid for and that is to mange the Triple-A Las Vegas 51′s this season.
As I said before, and you can read below, I thought it was naive for Alderson to think Collins’ lame duck status wouldn’t become an issue. Here is what he said last week:
“I think it will only be an issue if Terry makes it an issue or I make it an issue,” Alderson said. Wrong answer Mr. Alderson, this isn’t something you can sweep under the rug and pretend it goes away.
Backman may have just made it an issue:
“I know that his contract’s coming up, and he knows it. Everybody knows it. It’s a tough spot for him and, really, for me.”
Alderson did little to extinguish what Backman said by telling Davidoff on Saturday, that he believes Backman is capable of managing in the big leagues right now.
Yep… This is going to be a big issue – like it or not.
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Last night, Sandy Alderson revisited the subject of Terry Collins, who is in the final year of his contract and heads into this season as a lame duck.
“I think it will only be an issue if Terry makes it an issue or I make it an issue,” Alderson said. “I hope we don’t let the media make it an issue, although it’s a question that I’m sure will be asked, especially early in spring training.”
“But I’ve talked to Terry. I think he’s comfortable with his situation. And I know that whatever happens this season, there will be a fair evaluation at the end.”
This is not that different from what he said right after ringing in the new year:
“Look, it would be disingenuous to say, no, it won’t be an issue. Sometimes it becomes an issue. I think it’s a function of whether Terry makes it an issue, or the club makes it an issue, or the media makes it an issue. I understand the possibility it could become something. I hope it doesn’t.”
I think Collins is eventually going to be the fall guy for 2013 even though he was dealt a bad hand. The truth is that he’s never gotten the opportunity to manage a team that can contend for a title, and when he was able to get the team to play above themselves, he had the rug pulled out from under him.
If this team really is geared for a championship run beginning in 2014, I doubt very much that Collins will be around to see it. I’m pretty certain that he will be cast aside for a younger and newer model, never having an opportunity to reap the rewards of the confidence he’s instilled in some of the team’s younger players.
As for this becoming an issue or not, I think it’s naive to think it won’t be. This will become an issue and you can bet on that. (USA online sportsbooks)
We’ve had dozens of instances like this in the past with the Mets, Yankees, Jets, Giants, Knicks and Rangers, and it always becomes an issue in this town. This isn’t southern California.