Hey everyone this is Josh Thomson filling in for JD. Here are tonight’s lineups:
- Ramirez, SS
- Hermida, RF
- Cantu, 3B
- Jacobs, !B
- Uggla, 2B
- Gonzalez, LF
- Treanor, C
- Jones, CF
- Nolasco, P (3-3, 4.62; 1-3, 10.80 in career vs. Mets)
- Reyes, SS
- Castillo, 2B
- Wright, 3B
- Beltran, CF
- Delgado, 1B
- Schneider, C
- Evans, LF
- Chavez, RF
- Pelfrey, P (2-5, 5.00; 1-1, 4.67 in career vs. Marlins)
The players were largely supportive of Willie, although no one we spoke to except for Beltran said specifically that he should remain the manager.
Beltran told us someone (ownership, Minaya) should speak to the team about Willie’s status. He’d like them to tell the players their manager will remain through the end of the season.
“I think they should say that,” Beltran said. “It is a distraction. The reality is people say it doesn’t effect the ballclub but it does. You come to the ballpark wondering what’s going to happen.”
Beltran likened the situation to his own back in Kansas City. He was traded from KC to Houston in 2004 and said he came to work everyday wondering if it was going to be his last in a Royals uniform. He said it was a distraction at the time.
The players seemed a bit miffed having to answer questions about Randolph’s situation. They all agreed that they have to play better.
Delgado grew testy with a reporter when asked point-blank whether he thought (key word there) Randolph should retain his job. “I think we need to play better,” he said emphatically. “This isn’t about the manager. I’m not in position to think or not think. They don’t pay me to think here. They pay me to play baseball.”
For what it’s worth, it appeared Randolph did speak to the club. Around 6 p.m., right before we were booted from the clubhouse at the customary time, Randolph rounded up players for a meeting. Another person I was working alongside suggested maybe it was a normally pre-series meeting, but we saw Randolph grab a couple players headed to other meetings. That confirmed my belief that he addressed his team.
I’ll talk to you during the game.