200 Miles From the Citi

October 6, 2009 4:01 AM


It's like making sure to turn off the oven while the house is burning down.

The Mets Monday fired first base coach Luis Alicea, while re-assigning bench coach Sandy Alomar and third base coach Razor Shines.

The good news here is that this creates some possible openings for the likes of, oh, I don't know, Hall of Famer Gary Carter. First base coach, then when Jerry Manuel gets off to a slow start in 2010, pull a Colorado Rockies, fire the manager, and put Gary Carter in to lead the Mets to a playoff berth.

Of course, they won't.

Hitting coach Howard Johnson will keep his job. So will pitching coach Dan Warthen and bullpen coach Randy Niemann.

The HoJo news leads me to the most misleading stat ever - the Mets hit .270 this year and tied the Dodgers for highest batting average in the National League. That got them a whole lot of nothing.

Some of these quotes about the firings are making me mad. I feel like the blame should fall on the manager, not the coaches. While Jeff Wilpon says Omar Minaya and Jerry Manuel are keeping their jobs, they are on notice, I guess, for another year, because the Mets 'demand' and 'expect' better.

Manuel, meanwhile, says, "The traffic that we had on the bases probably to a lot of degree was not properly managed as well as we would've liked to have seen." You know who the blame falls on for that? I blame the manager. Because that's not the stuff a first base coach should be blamed for. I'm not seeing players thrown out at second stretching singles into doubles as much as I'm seeing players making terrible baserunning decisions. Those are the types of things that need to be taught and taught and taught during spring training, not during the regular season (not to mention the fact that ballplayers shouldn't need tremendous coaching at the professional level on the basepaths...should they?).

So I feel like Jerry Manuel is putting the blame that should fall on him onto his coaches.

And I feel like the Mets are just making sure to shut the door right before the building is demolished.

TWINS-TIGERS: I promised a playoff pick for Tuesday, here it is (I'll have the real playoff picks tomorrow) - I think the Twins will smoke the Tigers Tuesday night. I don't even think it will be close. And I wish the Mets had sent off Shea the way the Twins are sending off the Metrodome.

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