Well, it’s been one year since Jerry Manuel took over the reins of the Mets as its manager. The team has won 88 games and lost 67 for a .567 percent winning percentage under his tenure. That’s not bad for a first-year manager. I’m sure Joe Girardi would’ve loved to have had that record in his first year, though his wasn’t much worse at .549.
Manuel was hot out of the starting gate in his first 93 games, where he was 55-38 (.591 percentage). Those were the number of games he managed in 2008, but the Mets fell short once again at the end of the season and didn’t make the playoffs for the second straight year. That was on his watch. In 2009, the Mets are 33-29 for a .532 percentage and right now trailing three games behind the Phillies, which is exactly where the Mets were at the end of last season.
Granted, this year Manuel has had to deal with a lot more injuries. When you lose two members of your core offense and two starting pitchers, along with a myriad of injuries to other backup players, it’s hard to maintain a consistency of winning games. Manuel’s done a pretty good job of piecing the team together around those ailments, and the team is still playing winning baseball, for the most part.
That’s not to say Manuel won’t have you scratching your head or throwing your arms up in the air in exasperation over some of the calls he makes. Sometimes his gut decisions overrule his common sense. He still seems to have the respect of the Mets clubhouse, unlike Willie Randolph at this time last year, and his post-game reactions to the media haven’t gotten tiresome—yet.
So, I’m still willing to back him as manager. Happy Anniversary, Jerry. Here’s hoping you take the Mets to the playoffs and keep your job.
What do you think? Has he done a good job or would you rather see someone else, like Bobby Valentine or Steve Phillips, manage the team?