This could have been worse.
A lot worse.
Imagine if Brodie Van Wagenen got his way and was able to execute a trade for disgraced Astros manager A.J. Hinch.
There would have been no Carlos Beltran to fall on his sword today. Instead, the Mets would have employed a suspended manager, and would have lost a few prospects and/or big league players in the process.
Instead for his involvement in the Astros cheating scandal as a player, Beltran removes himself as manager of the Mets.
“We met with Carlos last night and again this morning and agreed to mutually part ways. This was not an easy decision,” Mets COO Jeffrey Wilpon said in a statement. “Considering the circumstances, it became clear to all parties that it was not in anyone’s best interest for Carlos to move forward as Manager of the New York Mets. We believe that Carlos was honest and forthcoming with us. We are confident that this will not be the final chapter in his baseball career. We remain excited about the talent on this team and are committed to reaching our goals of winning now and in the future.”
It seems though, Beltran was the one who made this call. Speaking to ESPN’s Marley Rivera, he seemed contrite in his thoughts.
“Over my 20 years in the game, I’ve always taken pride in being a leader and doing things the right way, and in this situation, I failed,” Beltran told Rivera.
“As a veteran player on the team I should’ve recognized the severity of the issue and truly regret the actions that were taken. I am a man of faith and integrity and what took place did not demonstrate those characteristics that are so very important to me and my family.
“I’m very sorry. It’s not who I am as a father, a husband, a teammate and as an educator. The Mets organization and I mutually agreed to part ways, moving forward for the greater good with no further distractions. I hope that at some point in time, I’ll have the opportunity to return to this game that I love so much.”
One day, he may have the chance, and it is unfortunate that the Mets could not find a way to put this behind them. This is not their scandal and no other player on the Astros received any punishment. And frankly, the Mets were put into a situation, because of the actions of Astros owner Jim Crane, who was the beneficiary of the scandal, when he decided to fire both Hinch and general manager Jeff Lohnow.
But remember, Crane has a World Series win to comfort himself, as does the Red Sox John Henry when he parted ways with Alex Cora, seeing a more severe suspension is coming down the pike for his manager.
The Mets don’t have a championship in the past few years to comfort them, instead they are now on the market for a new manager, along with the Astros and Red Sox.
It’s a shame too, because Beltran could have been a very good manager. In my 15 years of covering the Mets, there was no player was more knowledgeable about the game than Beltran, who gave very thoughtful answers when it came to the technical aspects of hitting and fielding.
But unfortunately, he decided the distraction of the scandal would have been too much for the Mets to endure throughout the season.
Managing in New York is different and there will always be some reporter, who would keep bringing up the scandal. It’s not fair to the Mets, because none of this is their doing.
And there is really nothing they can do about it, except move on and hope their next managerial hire is the right call.
Hopefully, for the 2020 season, it will be.