With the New York Mets looking for a general manager, there is a report from Jon Heyman that Mickey Callaway is no lock to return as manager.
As the New York Mets continue searching for their next general manager, that person might have the opportunity to pick a new manager as well.
“There’s a split on Mickey Callaway within the Mets’ front office, so expect him to have a short leash in 2019. The Mets have consistently said Callaway will return to manage next year even before hiring a GM. However, some within the Mets’ hierarchy see it as a work in progress that may not work out. Callaway gets credit for keeping the team engaged to the end, as it had a fine finish (just like it had a great start; it was in between that was the trouble). Callaway is also well-liked throughout the organization, but some are questioning whether he’s suited for New York.”
Now, this report should come as no surprise because the new general manager is going to want to pick his own manager depending upon how much power he is given. With a vast amount of candidates being considered, it is tough to tell which direction the Mets are leaning in their search.
As Heyman reported, Callaway should get a lot of credit for the way that the Mets played down the stretch. In the second half of the season, the Mets were 38-30 in 68 games and they won 18 of their final 28 games in the month of September.
While that is a good finish to the season, the question still remains as to whether the rough middle of the season, including a 5-21 record in the month of June, should be completely forgotten by whoever becomes in charge of the front office.
Callaway did a good job with the pitching staff as Jacob deGrom had a great year and Zack Wheeler showed dominance in the second half of the season. It is tough to evaluate his year because there were many extremes. At the worst case, the Mets should maybe think about bringing in some managerial experience alongside him.
Heyman pointed out during the ALDS that the only first-time manager that had a bench coach with managerial experience is Alex Cora and the Red Sox are currently in the ALCS against the Houston Astros:
not against hiring an inexperienced manager (Cora has been damn good). one thing I don't get is hiring an inexperienced manager, then giving him a bench coach that also never managed in the majors. like the yankees and mets both did. Cora got ron roenicke. better idea!
— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) October 10, 2018
The fact of the matter is that Callaway deserves every opportunity to put his plan in place past this past season. At the same time, it should not come as a surprise if the new GM wants to put his own plan in place and it doesn’t involve Callaway. That would allow a fresh start and a new vision to come into Flushing.
Callaway did a good job turning an awful first couple of months of the season into a respectable finish. With that being said, that doesn’t mean his job should be guaranteed going into a 2019 campaign where the Mets will have fairly high expectations in what should be a competitive NL East.