Wednesday, April 06, 2005

Willie Randolph, Mgr:

I promise not to blog much about baseball.
The Mets decided that Willie Randolph will be a great manager. So great in fact that he needs no seasoning in the minor leagues, but will learn best beneath the cruel magnifying glass of NYC sports. I hope they are right, for his debut was not impressive.
On opening day he appeared to manage like the American Leaguer he mostly was. Considering that the Mets got most of their runs via the long ball, he may even have been correct. I'm more concerned by a failure if imagination late in the game.
The Mets pitched Dae-Sung Koo in the eighth, one of their many “question mark” relievers. He was sensational, striking out the last two batters on called third strike pitches that looked like balls and moved so much that catcher Piazza dropped them both. Koo may have been having a career moment! I really expected him to start the ninth. With a two-run lead, there was room to bring in the Mets' genuine closer if Koo got into trouble. But no, the unimaginative move – bring in the closer to start the ninth.
It's not that important to me that the Mets' closer lost the game. I'm concerned about the lost opportunity to nurture a new player who might grow into something special.

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