Our long national nightmare is over! The Mets have fired manager Mickey Callaway after two seasons as manager. Callaway was 163-161 with the Mets and was known for his positivity which masked his questionable in game decisions. The last two seasons were marked in disappointment and ignorance which led to the much needed change.
Mickey Callaway has been relieved of his duties. #Mets
— New York Mets (@Mets) October 3, 2019
The Mets fired Callaway along with bench coach Jim Riggleman. Callaway still had one year to go on his deal, but it seemed like the walls were caving in on him all season. The first half of the season was a disaster and there were calls for him to be fired in mid-May. The Mets suffered some of the most grueling losses of the season and limped to a 40-50 record at the All-Star break.
Locker Room Commotion
On camera, Callaway was known for his unwavering confidence. After a brutal loss against the Cubs, Callaway uncharacteristically got in the face of reporter Tim Healey after Healey said “see you tomorrow, Mickey.” He told Healey not to be a “smart ass” and then it escalated to a point where Jason Vargas threatened to fight Healey.
In a second media session, Mickey Callaway has clarified that he apologized to Tim Healey pic.twitter.com/F3Q23TKF0w
— SNY (@SNYtv) June 24, 2019
That day signified how bad of a tailspin the Mets were in. Callaway seemed lost on handling his bullpen and there were reports of him being controlled like a puppet by Van Wagenen. Despite all of that, his players still fought for him and tried to dig the team out of the deep hole they were in.
Second Half Resurgence
The Mets never felt they were dead and buried. They were 46-26 during the second half and got as close as one game away from a playoff spot. It was too big of a deficit for the Mets to climb out of and they ended up just missing out on the postseason. The renewed confidence had somehow given a new life to the idea of Callaway returning for the 2020 season.
In the end, it seemed like a no brainer to move away from Callaway. He made multiple rookie mistakes over his two seasons at the helm. At times he was over matched and out managed. The best move is to wipe the slate clean, because there is plenty of talent on the roster going into 2020.
It is sad when anyone loses their job. Mickey Callaway deserves credit for keeping this team together when the season appeared dead and led them to a great and exciting 2nd half and 86 wins.
It just was apparent at too many times he didn’t have the ability to manage in-game
— Joe DeMayo (@PSLToFlushing) October 3, 2019
What is the next step now? New York is a huge market and the Mets will have high expectations going into 2020. Joe Girardi seems like the easy move, but the Mets are not willing to overpay for a manager. Carlos Beltran and Joe Espada have also emerged on what will likely be a long list of managerial candidates.
Callaway was a hold over from the Sandy Alderson regime. If Van Wagenen picks the wrong guy, it could be the only opportunity he has to hire a manager. For the sake of his future, Brodie should go with the safe option instead of aiming for a home run.