Bock’s Score: HR Does Not Always Mean Home Runs With the Mets

Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire

Forget about pitching and hitting –which they did long ago – the New York Mets should concentrate on improving their human resources department.

The “As The Mets World Turns’’ soap opera continues to spin out of control with the news that acting general manager Zack Scott was busted for DUI at 4 o’clock in the morning, a time he should have been tucked in his bed, dreaming of how to improve this woebegone franchise.

Scott had this job because management was forced to fire the previous GM, Jared Porter, for some inappropriate behavior in his background involving sexual harassment. Porter was dismissed after less than a month on the job which put into question the HR department’s vetting procedures.

Before Steve Cohen peeled off a couple of billion bucks from his bulging wallet to purchase his favorite team, the Mets made some other questionable personnel decisions.

When they went searching for a previous general manager, they came up with Brodie Van Wagenen, a player agent, whose plan was to import former clients to play for the team. This is how Jed Lowrie wound up with a $20 million contract to spend two seasons trying to play the infield on one leg. This is also how he traded for Robinson Cano, now sitting out a one-year drug suspension and Edwin Diaz, who had an annoying tendency to give up game-turning home runs.

Then there was Mickey Callaway, now under suspension from baseball for Porter-like sexual shenanigans with a female reporter. It was under Calloway’s direction that the Mets once betted out of order, a Little League mistake.

When it was time for Callaway to depart, management hired former Met hero Carlos Beltran as manager. His tenure ended abruptly when he was identified as one of the leaders of the Houston Astros’ electronic sign stealing adventure.

Desperate for a manager with spring training closing in, the Mets promoted Luis Rojas, who had a clean resume and was an organization guy. Sadly, he is almost certain to take the blame for the deep dive this team has experienced this summer.

One of the lowlights of the saga was the “Affair Of The Thumbs’’ when Francisco Lindor and Javier Baez led a protest against fans who booed their sorry performances by gesturing thumbs down at the customers. This did not sit well with management and the infielders apologized. Then Baez became a temporary hero when he circled the bases on a single to score the winning run against Miami the other day. In the ensuing celebration, he lost an earring, leaving groundskeepers and even club president Sandy Alderson searching frantically for the jewelry.

The team’s next search will be for a reconstructed front office that produces less drama. But then, what’s a soap opera without drama?

About the Author

Hal Bock

Hal Bock covered sports for 40 years at The Associated Press including 30 World Series, 30 Super Bowls and 11 Olympics. He is the author of 14 books including most recently The Last Chicago Cubs Dynasty and Banned Baseball's Blacklist of All-Stars and Also-Rans. He has written scores of magazine articles and served as Journalist In Residence at Long Island University's Brooklyn campus where he also served on the selection committee for the George Polk Awards.

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