The topic of concern for the Metropolitans organization and its fans is whether or not the franchise can "cut the mustard" and get to the playoffs this year. As the sports media and fans wonder, the slow decay of the Metropolitans 2009 season begins.
The majority of the media and fans believe, given precedent, the Metropolitans do not have the pieces to complete the puzzle this year. I feel all the pieces exist but the mind behind the play is in question. Especially, after a three game road loss to the Pittsburgh Pirates (25-28), one of the worst teams in the major leagues. In addition, the Metropolitans have thus far displayed a 28-24 record, nearly the same place they have been for the past three years hovering between 530-550%.
But where do I begin? Lets start with the lazy attitude and odd behavior of the New York Metropolitans management.
The behavior of the Metropolitan management from owners Fred and Jeff Wilpon to the general manager Omar Minaya needs to be questioned. Why? Because of the a lazy attitude and lack of decisive action. Whether it is an internal player injury, making a roster move, the aesthetics of Citi Field or player acquisitions, the Metropolitans never corner the king.
Why does the Metropolitans management fail to take decisive action on some of the most important organizational issues? Do they seem lazy, incompetent? Are they afraid of making the wrong decision? The genesis of the problem is unknown, yet it exists.
At this point in the season, half the starting roster has fallen ill or has sustained an on-field injury. Yet, the Metropolitans management fail to make firm decisions on how to handle these players. DL, no DL, injured , not injured....it goes on and on. The result is a diminished offensive line-up which in turn impacts run production and, ultimately, wins (I know the pitching has compensated, but for how long?).
For example, Jose Reyes has been mired on the DL for 15 days and the Metropolitans management still have not announced a firm diagnosis on when he will be returning. A muscle tear? A cleared MRI?
In this age of medical wonders, why Joese Reyes is not playing baseball baffles even the most naive observer. The same behavior was manifested in the Carlos Delgado injury; fans know the outcome there. (Note, Jose Reyes has finally been diagnosed with a "small" tear in his right hamstring)
This lazy attitude and indecisive behavior which in turn produces poor decision making has not only been exhibited by the Metropolitan's management. The same behavior has permeated the talent and performance of its players.
I guess the old saying goes "you are what you eat". The Metropolitans players are just that, lazy and indecisive.
The Metropolitan players have become very accepting of the managements' lazy attitude and indecisive behavior which is very common in human behavior. I even tend to exhibit the behavior of another person if I am around a them for an extended period of time. However, it is not only the acceptance that angers me, it's how this attitude and behavior affects on-field performance.
Not running out fly balls (I cannot list all the names)
Not taking yourself out of a game when you are injured (JJ)
Not defending players (Jerry)
Being swing happy (David)
Base running errors (Jose)
Defensive errors (Luis)
The list goes on and on. Not to mention, players are not holding other players accountable.
Now, what's the solution? It is simple yet complex. There needs to be a change in attitude and behavior at the top and bottom of the organization. Diagnosing the problem, in this case, is the simple part; changing the behavior of the leaders is complex. In the political realm this can be accomplished by overthrowing the leader or voting him out. In capitalism this does not hold the same weight. (huh?)
Anyway, I have come to the conclusion: if the attitude and behavior of the Metropolitans, both management and players, does not change, failure is inevitable. The lazy attitude and indecisive behavior of the Metropolitans is rooted in its management and blooms in its players. Ultimately, the sports media and the fans should not blame any one individual for the decay of the Metropolitans but the sum of its parts.
Or is this just another part of the carnival?