Every sports fan with a blog today will likely turn their lazy eye and foaming mouthpieces to the asinine firing of Mets manager Willie Randolph.
Hyperbole aside, this may go down as the biggest front-office mismanagement in the history of managerial dismissals. New Yorkers thought the Yankums' firing of Joe Torre was off-putting? Poor Ol' Willie's sacking is about as classless as it gets, more poorly handled than an eight-month-old infant in the care of a British au pair. The term "exit strategy" has made a huge comeback since the start of the Iraq war -- it's clear the Mets possessed not clue one about how to get out of this situation.
Nearly everyone will agree to the facts: the Mets knew they would eventually fire Willie but left him on the line at least a month too long, a true lame duck; they let him take the team 3,000 miles away on a road trip, watched him win three of four, had him hold the typical post-game press conference, and then they canned him in the dead of night. The result? A press release at 3:15 am. And if there's anything the print press loves, it's going to bed in all its morning editions with information that's totally untrue by morning. I'm sure they'll be totally sympathetic to the Mets all year long after this slight.
Okay, we're all on board with these things. But here's my favorite part of the firing, perhaps the biggest insult to Willie: "It was a frustrating end for the 53-year-old Randolph, who was set to be an NL coach at the All-Star game at Yankee Stadium next month."
So Willie, who spent 13 seasons in pinstripes as a beloved player and another 10+ as an assistant general manager, third base coach and bench coach with the Yankees, will no longer be participating on the field at Yankee Stadium in its final season. It'll be a magical All Star Game, a swan song for the ages, with old Hall of Famers and baseball nostalgia out the arse, and Willie missed his chance to be a big part of it by three weeks. Omar Minaya just Omar Little'd Willie's shot.
If Big Stein were still with it, I bet he'd bring Willie back on the field in a Yanks uniform. Just to show those rat bastards in Queens how things are done. Things can be done.